Pop Superstar Taylor Swift won her trial against former radio DJ David Mueller, who is accused of ‘groping’ her during a photo opportunity at a 2013 concert in Denver, reports news agency Reuters. The jury found the former DJ guilty of assaulting Taylor Swift by groping her bare bottom.
The pop star broke down in tears during the closing arguments in her civil trial. She was also awarded the symbolic $1 in damages she had sought. “I acknowledge the privilege that I benefit from in life, in society and in my ability to shoulder the enormous cost of defending myself in a trial like this,” Taylor Swift, 27, said in a statement released after the verdicts, reports Reuters.
The six-woman, the two-man jury also rejected David Mueller’s claims that Swift’s mother, Andrea Swift, and radio liaison Frank Bell cost him his $150,000-a-year job at country station KYGO-FM, where he was a morning host. The proceedings were held at the US District Court in Denver.
Mueller, who was seeking up to $3 million, denied Swift’s allegation from the start and maintained his innocence after the verdict.
“I’ve been trying to clear my name for four years,” he said in explaining why he took the singer-songwriter to court.
During an hour of testimony, Swift blasted a low-key characterization by Mueller’s attorney, Gabriel McFarland, of what happened. While Mueller testified he never grabbed Swift, she insisted she was groped.
“He stayed attached to my bare ass-cheek as I lurched away from him,” Swift testified.
“It was a definite grab. A very long grab,” she added.
Mueller emphatically denied reaching under the pop star’s skirt or otherwise touching her inappropriately, insisting he touched only her ribs and may have brushed the outside of her skirt as they awkwardly posed for the picture.
“It means ‘no means no’ and it tells every woman they will decide what will be tolerated with their body,” Douglas Baldridge, Taylor Swift’s attorney said, adding that she has sought for only $1 in compensation as she doesn’t want David Mueller to become bankrupt, but only wanted to send a message.
“My hope is to help those whose voices should also be heard,” Taylor Swift said adding that she would make donations to the organisations helping sexual assault victims.
The incident happened in 2013 when Taylor Swift was 23. The singer’s attorney earlier told AFP that they did not file a police report that time because Taylor Swift ‘didn’t want it to be made public.’
(With Reuters inputs)