(Breaking news update, posted at 11:52 a.m.)
Taylor Swift was confident and assertive on the stand on Thursday in her civil trial in testifying against David Mueller, the man she says groped her at a meet-and-greet in June 2013.
“What Mr. Mueller did was very intentional,” Swift said as she answered questions from Gabriel McFarland, Mueller’s attorney.
“I am critical of your client for sticking his hand under my skirt and grabbing my ass,” Swift said.
She rejected Mueller’s claim that their interaction was basic “jostling” for a photo, and said she had no reaction to learning that Mueller had been fired over the incident. “I’m not going to allow you or your client to make me feel in anyway that this is my fault because it isn’t,” she said.
“I am being blamed for the unfortunate events of his life that are a product of his decisions and not mine,” Swift added later.
(Previous story, posted at 11:37 a.m.)
Taylor Swift testified in a civil trial on Thursday that a former radio DJ intentionally groped her in June 2013, sticking his hand under her skirt and grabbing her behind, she said.
“It was horrifying and shocking and we had never experienced anything like (it),” Swift said.
The trial stems from Swift’s allegation that David Mueller, a former radio DJ for KYGO, inappropriately touched her at a backstage meet-and-greet at Denver’s Pepsi Center in June 2013. KYGO is a CNN affiliate.
Swift was called to the stand by Mueller’s attorney. She is on the witness list for both sides in the case.
Swift’s team told KYGO officials about the incident, and the station fired Mueller two days later after its own investigation.
In 2015, Mueller sued Swift, her mother, and her radio promotions director Frank Bell, alleging that they pressured KYGO to terminate him based on a false accusation.
In response, Swift filed a countersuit in which she accused Mueller of reaching under her dress and grabbing her bottom as they posed for a photo.
Mueller testified that he did not grope Swift and said that his career in radio had been ruined by what he said was a false accusation. However, Swift’s attorney Doug Baldridge argued that the incident did happen and that Mueller was suing for fame and money.
Jurors have already heard testimony from Mueller, Swift’s mother, Andrea, and Bell. Austin Swift, the pop star’s younger brother, arrived to court via the main entrance on Thursday, marking his first appearance at the trial.
Swift, one of the most powerful celebrities in the world, has been an everyday presence in this Denver courtroom. Her lawsuit makes the case that her active participation in the trial will “serve as an example to other women who may resist publicly reliving similar outrageous and humiliating acts.”
Mother: ‘I wanted to vomit and cry’
Andrea Swift delivered some of the dramatic testimony Wednesday as she described learning about the alleged groping incident.
“‘Mom, a guy just grabbed my (rear end) in the meet-and-greet,'” Andrea Swift said her daughter told her.
“I wanted to vomit and cry at the same time,” she said.
The trial has largely focused on a photo from that meet-and-greet featuring Swift, Mueller and his then-girlfriend Shannon Melcher. The photo, leaked last year and shown in court, shows Mueller with his hand hidden from view below Swift’s lower back.
Swift’s attorney Baldridge argued that the photo is evidence of Mueller’s misconduct, and noted that KYGO cited the photo in its decision to fire him.
However, Gabriel McFarland, Mueller’s attorney, said the photo did not show the inappropriate under-skirt touching that Swift has alleged.
“If you look at that photo, his hand is not underneath her skirt. It’s not ruffled, rumpled, affected in any form or fashion,” McFarland said.
Mueller admitted that the photo appeared “weird” and “awkward” but said that his closed fist touched what he felt were her ribs.