Taylor Swift has won US$1 and vindication after a jury decided that a radio DJ groped her during a pre-concert photo shoot four years ago.
A federal court jury in Denver found that radio DJ David Mueller assaulted US pop star Taylor Swift by grabbing her bare bottom under her skirt during the photo shoot, awarding her the symbolic $US1 in damages she sought.
The same eight-member jury rejected claims in a counter suit filed by Mueller that Swift’s mother and a member of her circle cost him his job by making false groping accusations.
After the verdict was read, Swift hugged her lawyers and her mother before mouthing the words “thank you” to the jury. Mueller and his team remained expressionless.
Taylor Swift hugs her attorneys and mother after verdict is read. Andrea cries. Mueller didn’t look at his attorneys. #taylorswifttrial
— Blair Miller (@blairmiller) August 14, 2017
“I want to thank Judge William J Martinez and the jury for their careful consideration, my attorneys … for fighting for me and anyone who feels silenced by a sexual assault, and especially anyone who offered their support throughout this four-year ordeal and two-year long trial process,” Swift said in a statement obtained by People.
“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,” she said.
“My hope is to help those whose voices should also be heard. Therefore, I will be making donations in the near future to multiple organisations that help sexual assault victims defend themselves.”
It was an emotional day in court for Swift, who was moved to tears as Mueller’s lawyer, Gabriel McFarland, argued his client’s case.
According to People, when McFarland said his client was “not the guy” who grabbed Swift’s backside, the singer shook her head and mouthed the word, ‘Wow’.
McFarland referred to a photo of the incident in which Swift appears to be smiling and unbothered, asking the jury, “Is that the face of someone who’s had someone grab their butt? Who is shocked?”
“There’s nothing in Taylor Swift’s face to suggest anything is wrong,” McFarland said, at which point Swift reportedly turned to her mother in tears.
Swift’s lawyer Doug Baldridge said her win was a symbolic victory as well as a legal one.
“It takes people like Taylor, wonderful people like Taylor, who we all know, to stand up and draw these lines,” he told media.
“That dollar, that single dollar, is of immeasurable value in this ever going fight to figure out where the lines are, what’s right and what’s wrong.”
– With agencies