Swift ex­pected to tes­tify in grop­ing case in Den­ver

Kuwait Times - - LIFESTYLE -

Afew mo­ments at a back­stage photo ses­sion four years ago are about to be re­lived, as lawyers for pop star Tay­lor Swift and a for­mer disc jockey she ac­cuses of grop­ing her be­gin pick­ing ju­rors Monday in their du­el­ing law­suits. Ra­dio host David Mueller sued the singer-song­writer, say­ing he was falsely ac­cused and that she should have called po­lice in­stead of his bosses, who fired him soon after the June 2013 en­counter. He's seek­ing up to $3 mil­lion in dam­ages. Swift coun­ter­sued, claim­ing sex­ual as­sault, set­ting up the civil trial where she is ex­pected to tes­tify amid tight­ened court­house se­cu­rity.

Open­ing state­ments could be­gin to­mor­row in the case that could last two weeks. Court doc­u­ments say it is un­likely that ei­ther side will set­tle. Swift is seek­ing a ver­dict that awards her $1, while hold­ing Mueller re­spon­si­ble and "serv­ing as an ex­am­ple to other women who may re­sist publicly re­liv­ing sim­i­lar out­ra­geous and hu­mil­i­at­ing acts," her law­suit says.

Mueller is also ex­pected to tes­tify, along with Mueller's for­mer boss and mem­bers of Swift's en­tourage. Mueller, then 51, was a morn­ing host at a coun­try mu­sic sta­tion when he was as­signed to at­tend Swift's con­cert at the Pepsi Cen­ter in Den­ver. Mueller was back­stage with his girl­friend when they met with Swift, then 23, in a cur­tained en­clo­sure. They posed for a photo and left. Later, Swift's body­guard con­fronted Mueller with the al­le­ga­tion that he had reached un­der the singer's dress and grabbed her but­tocks.

Mueller de­nied the al­le­ga­tion and asked that they call the po­lice. He and his girl­friend were es­corted out of the arena and a mem­ber of Swift's team called his boss. Swift never went to the po­lice. She tried to keep the sit­u­a­tion "dis­creet and quiet and con­fi­den­tial" and was up­set by Mueller's claim that "for some rea­son she might have some in­cen­tive to ac­tu­ally fab­ri­cate this story," her at­tor­ney, Dou­glas Baldridge, has ar­gued in court. Mueller's at­tor­ney, Gabriel McFar­land, ar­gues that Mueller may have been misiden­ti­fied after some­one else touched Swift. Swift's mother and a mem­ber of her team are also de­fen­dants in the law­suit filed by Mueller. — AP

File photo shows singer Tay­lor Swift per­forms her song ‘Story of Us’, as she kicks off her Speak Now North Amer­i­can tour in Omaha, Neb.— AP

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