Singer-songwriter said in her case against Denver DJ David Mueller that she wanted the chance to stand up for other women. Judge also dismisses Taylor from the DJ’s lawsuit in which he sued the Swifts for getting him fired and ruining his career.
Taylor Swift won $1 and long-awaited vindication after a jury decided that a radio host groped her during a pre-concert photo op four years ago.
The six-woman, two-man US District Court jury found that fired Denver DJ David Mueller had assaulted and battered her during the "meet-and-greet" photo session. After a weeklong trial, the jurors determined that Mueller had groped her by grabbing Taylor’s backside.
The jury also found that Taylor’s mother and radio liaison Frank Bell were within their rights to contact Mueller's bosses.
The same panel, which deliberated for less than a day, rejected Mueller's claims that the singer's team got him fired from his "dream job" at his radio station by making false groping accusations.
Mueller, 55, initiated the litigation and suit the Swifts and Bell over his termination, seeking up to $3 million for his ruined career.
Just before closing arguments, the judge dismissed Taylor from Mueller's lawsuit, saying he had failed to prove that she sought to get Mueller fired or had any reason to believe that someone else may have assaulted her. US District Judge William Martinez also drastically reduced the amount Mueller could collect.
.#taylorswifttrial is a good example of how famous and rich you can be and STILL have people not believe you when you say you were assaulted— Nick Baumann (@NickBaumann) August 10, 2017
Get up, stand up
The singer-songwriter said in her countersuit that she wanted a symbolic $1 and the chance to stand up for other women.
“It means 'no means no' and it tells every woman they will decide what will be tolerated with their body," Baldridge said of the principle Taylor was trying to defend.
Testimony showed that Taylor reported the incident to her mother and others on her team, but that she never sought any specific action regarding Mueller.
From the start, Taylor 's side portrayed the encounter as a clear case of sexual assault, even though they never reported it to police.
Her mother tearfully testified that she asked Bell to reach out to Mueller's employers at country station KYGO-FM instead because they wanted to handle the matter quietly and avoid exposing the singer-songwriter to publicity.
Bell contacted a station vice president and asked for an investigation of Mueller's conduct. He also sent the station executive a photo taken of Taylor , Mueller and Mueller's then-girlfriend at the meet-and-greet.
#taylorswifttrial is a victory for all survivors. @taylorswift13 is letting sexual assault survivors know they aren't alone &can get justice— Ann McLane Kuster (@RepAnnieKuster) August 15, 2017
In a fiery hour-long stint on the witness stand last week, Taylor blasted a low-key characterisation by Mueller's attorney, Gabriel McFarland, of what happened. While Mueller testified he never grabbed Taylor , she insisted she was groped.
"He stayed attached to my bare ass-cheek as I lurched away from him," Taylor testified.
"It was a definite grab. A very long grab," she added.
Mueller emphatically denied reaching under the pop star's skirt or otherwise touching her inappropriately, insisting he touched only her ribs and may have brushed the outside of her skirt as they awkwardly posed for the picture.
That photo was virtually the evidence besides the testimony. In the image shown to jurors during opening statements but not publicly released, Mueller's hand is behind Taylor , just below her waist. Both are smiling. Mueller's then-girlfriend is standing on the other side of Taylor .
Taylor testified that after she was groped, she numbly told Mueller and his girlfriend, "Thank you for coming," and moved on to photos with others waiting in line because she did not want to disappoint them.
But she said she immediately went to her photographer after the meet-and-greet ended and found the photo of her with Mueller, telling the photographer what happened.
Andrea Swift testified that she asked Bell to call Mueller's employers. They did not call the police to avoid further traumatising her daughter, she said.
"We absolutely wanted to keep it private, but we didn't want him to get away with it," Andrea testified.
Bell said he emailed the photo to Robert Call, KYGO's general manager, for use in Call's investigation of Mueller. He said he didn't ask that Mueller be fired but that "appropriate action be taken."