Taylor Swift’s trial against David Mueller is under way. The singer, 27, appeared in a Denver federal courthouse on Tuesday, August 8, where a final jury was selected for the case and both sides later gave their opening remarks.
Swift’s lawyer, J. Douglas Baldridge, gave an impassioned opening statement referencing the alleged incident, in which Swift claims the former radio DJ groped her backstage in 2013. “Today Ms. Swift is taking a stand for all women. Today a woman has reported being sexually assaulted and now she is being sued for a case of workplace sexual assault. She has been in tens of thousands of meet-and-greets, including going out in the crowds, and she never had this happen,” Baldridge said, per an Us Weekly reporter in attendance. “If a person cannot stand up and serve as an example to other young women that have been sexually assaulted, then who can?”
“This was an assault and Ms. Swift reported that it happened. There is overwhelming photographic evidence showing what happened,” Baldridge continued as he held up a photo from the meet-and-greet in question. “The accused has an alibi, but he only came up with it two years later. He wants to make the victim pay the price, he is seeking 15 times what his contract with the radio station was worth in damages, and Ms. Swift is seeking $1 to show women you can say no.”
As previously reported, Mueller worked at country music station 98.5 KYGO when he was assigned to attend the Grammy winner’s concert at Denver’s Pepsi Center in June 2013. After posing for a meet-and-greet photo with Swift and his girlfriend, Mueller was confronted by the singer’s bodyguard, who claimed he had reached under her dress and grabbed her butt. The DJ was subsequently fired and filed a lawsuit against Swift, seeking up to $3 million in damages.
Mueller’s lawyer, Gabriel McFarland, defended his client and denied Swift’s allegations. “He is here to clear his name and he unequivocally denies he touched her inappropriately in any way,” he said in the court room the same day. “There was no inappropriate contact that is Mr. Mueller’s position.”
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