Taylor Swift Groping Trial Begins on Monday

Taylor Swift
Darron Cummings/AP/REX/Shutterstock

In a jury trial that begins Monday morning (Aug. 7), Taylor Swift is expected to testify about her claim that a Colorado radio host groped her during a 2013 backstage meet-and-greet. The trial is expected to last nine days.

Swift says Colorado DJ David Mueller grabbed her in June 2013 during a visit backstage at the Pepsi Center in Denver. In May, a federal judge refused to dismiss a lawsuit from a Mueller in which he claimed he was wrongfully accused of grabbing Swift inappropriately. Mueller was interviewed by his employers and fired two days after the incident.

David Mueller sued Swift, her mother Andrea, and her manager Frank Bell, alleging that they exerted improper pressure on his employer, radio station KYGO, to fire him. Swift countersued Mueller for assault and battery.

Related

Taylor Swift

Taylor Swift Headed for Jury Trial in DJ Grabbing Incident

In his ruling, Martinez found that the litigation centers on a factual question — whether Mueller did or did not touch Swift inappropriately on the buttocks — which is a matter for a jury to decide.

At the center of the trial is a photograph that both sides say proves their case: In it, Mueller’s right hand is behind Swift, below her waist, although it’s unclear whether or not he’s touching her.

Swift testified at a deposition that she is certain that Mueller intentionally grabbed her:

“And so then we get in a photo formation with me in the middle, and that’s when right as the moment came for us to pose for the photo, he took his hand and put it up my dress and grabbed onto my ass cheek, and no matter how much I scooted over it was still there,” she said. “It was not an accident, it was completely intentional, and I have never been so sure of anything in my life.”

Related

Sexual Harassment in Music Business

Sexual Harassment and the Music Business: The Song Remains the Same (Guest Column)

Mueller denies inappropriately touching Swift on her buttocks and is suing the singer-songwriter for $3 million in damages for losing his job at country radio station KYGO.

Swift is countersuing Mueller, seeking $1 and a ruling that holds him responsible.

Mueller has adamantly denied the allegation since it was first made.

According to court documents, the day after the alleged incident took place, Bell called Robert Call, a vice president at KYGO, and related what had happened.

“He was disappointed, Taylor’s family was upset, and they were looking to us to do the right thing,” Call wrote in his notes of the conversation. “The relationship with KYGO is important and unless we act, could be gravely impacted, and that he had assured all of the Taylor team that I would handle it appropriately.”

Bell testified that he placed the call after Andrea Swift, Taylor’s mother, told him that she wanted Mueller to “not be in radio anymore, to be fired.”

Swift’s attorneys have argued that KYGO made an independent decision to fire Mueller, and that she and her team should therefore not be held liable. Martinez rejected that argument, finding that a reasonable jury could conclude that Swift’s team exerted sufficient pressure on the station to influence its decision.

“To be clear, the Court views this as a close question,” Martinez wrote. “There would appear to be nothing improper about Swift — or any other person — making an honest report to an entity with which she does business that one of its employees assaulted or harassed her. Indeed, in the undersigned’s view, the policy of the law should encourage the reporting of actual assaults, not attach liability to it.”

However, in denying Swift’s motion for summary judgment, the judge noted that the true facts of the matter are up to a jury, not a judge, to decide. “Credibility determinations are likely central to resolving this case,” he wrote.

The judge previously ruled that all parties must attend the trial.

 

 

Filed Under:

Want to read more articles like this one? SUBSCRIBE TO VARIETY TODAY.
Post A Comment 12

Marketplace

    Leave a Reply

    12 Comments

    Comments are moderated. They may be edited for clarity and reprinting in whole or in part in Variety publications.

    Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

    WordPress.com Logo

    You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

    Twitter picture

    You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

    Facebook photo

    You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

    Google+ photo

    You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

    Connecting to %s

    1. Got fired without any proof, prior to any official anything? This, as it is, grabs me the wrong way.

    2. Sam says:

      What a boob

    3. Ty Breaker says:

      Are you allowed to use the word “a**” in a deposition? Shouldn’t she have used a more appropriate medical term. Also, if he did do it, is she allowed to ruin his career?

    4. This case was on the news months ago, when the allegations started.
      Curious this report don’t mention is the following from another media:
      “Mueller’s attorney, Gabriel McFarland, argues that Mueller may have been misidentified after someone else touched Swift.”
      It’s for the courts to decide the guilt of this man, according to the picture you can see his hand close to her back side, what we don’t see, the other woman’s even closer proximity to Tylor, you don’t see her hand around her waist. Which bring us back to ” Mueller may have been misidentified after someone else touched Swift.”
      Something to think about.

    5. heyitsron says:

      I hope, sincerely hope, that Dave teaches “Cheeks” a lesson. None of this smells good, “Cheeks.” None of it. “He said he was a DJ.” “He said he was a DJ several Times.” Yo? Those dudes play your songs. They make you famous. They put money, a lot of money, in your bank account. Forgotten this? The only thing you said that we believe is you kept scooting over to the girl standing on the other side as far as you can. We do believe that. Every legal eagle out there will be watching this closely. For lessons learned.

    6. mark says:

      That headline is tacky, variety

    More Biz News from Variety

    Loading