Taylor Swift "Groping Trial" Underway

Is this photo "damning proof" fired Denver DJ David Mueller groped Taylor Swift, or does it capture an awkward point when David Mueller scrambled to get into a photo with Taylor Swift and his girlfriend at the last minute?

That question will occupy 9 days of federal court time in Denver this month. Jury selection began yesterday, was completed today, and lawyers made their opening arguments to the 8 jurors selected. Who made the jury? [More...]

  • Latino man in his late 30s
  • Black woman in her 60s
  • White woman in her late 30s to early 40s
  • White woman in her late 30s
  • White man in his 40s
  • Asian woman in her 30s
  • White woman in her 60s
  • White woman in her late 40s early 50s

David Mueller was the first witness. But let's back up a bit.

Former DJ Mueller is suing Taylor Swift, her mother (who is her manager) and her music director for lost income and interference with his job contract due to being fired from his radio show job at a country music station in Denver, after Swift accused him of grabbing her bare behind under her skirt during a pre-concert photo-op at a fan meet and greet right before her Pepsi Center concert on June 2, 2013. Taylor Swift has counter-sued for assault and battery, is asking for $1 (In her original filing, she said she would donate any proceeds to women's causes.) The case is being tried in federal court in Denver before Judge William Martinez, who ordered that both parties be present throughout the trial. No cameras or mobile devices are allowed in the courtroom, but there's an overflow courtroom where tweeting apparently is allowed.

The court is posting several significant orders in the case here.

During opening arguments today, her lawyer, Douglas Baldridge, told the jury Mueller had grabbed Taylor Swift's rear end asked what possible motive she would have to make up the story. He said she is taking a stand for all women. (Please -- leave us out of it. This is about nothing but Taylor Swift being sued and denying the allegations. I wish he'd keep the "all women" stuff out of this.)

Mueller's lawyer, McFarland told the jury:

"Let's be clear about something from the onset — inappropriate touching is offensive, it's wrong and should never be tolerated...Let's also be clear that falsely accusing someone of inappropriate touching is equally offensive, it's wrong and should not be tolerated"

First let's deal with the photo: I think the TMZ photo above is ambiguous because of the placement of the TMZ watermark right at the hip. I found this TMZ video with a screenshot of the photo that makes it a little clearer. TMZ didn't change the photo, it just cropped the upper half and moved its watermark ever so slightly, and to my eye, this version shows a slight bulge in Taylor Swift's dress right at the hip in front of Mueller's hand. As if something pushed the dress up slightly.

When I expand it to 200%, here's what I get:

The dress or skirt seems to have sloppy tailoring at the hip and that's not the image I have of Taylor Swift. I went to her instagram page where there are hundreds of photos of her from 2012 to 2107. I can report her clothes are impeccably tailored. Every pair of tiny shorts, every skin tight dress, every top -- there are no gaps, no bulges and with her never-ending legs, she cuts a perfectly sleek figure. From a fashion standpoint, she (or more likely her stylist) strikes me as a complete perfectionist. The hip bulge in the photo seems obvious to me, and I doubt her handlers would have let her go to the meet and greet without smoothing it out or telling her to change her dress. (I doubt they only brought one, she changed outfits 15 times on stage.)

Added: I just watched another TMZ video with the photo and it had no watermark. I blew it up a little and added two arrows -- not only is there the bulge, but you can see a sliver of his arm. His sleeves are rolled to a bit above his watch this shows his arm right below the cuff -- so his hand had to be much lower. Was it at the hemline?

So does this mean she got intentionally groped by Mueller? Not necessarily -- he could have brushed against her dress it bunched up a little.

Besides interpreting the photo, what's left for the jury to decide? Credibility. This is a He said-she said.

Taylor's version at her deposition (which both sides have marked as exhibits) (available on PACER):

BY MR_ MCFARLAND (Mueller's lawyer):
Q. Okay. And your contention is that during the
second meet-and-greet, Mr. Mueller took his hand
underneath your skirt and grabbed your butt?
MR. BALDRIDGE (Swift's lawyer): Objection. Form.
Q_ Did he ever grab your butt outside of your clothing?
A. No. It was underneath my clothing.
Q. Did he ever touch your butt outside of your clothing?
A_ It was all underneath my clothing.
Q. Do you contend that Mr. Mueller
inappropriately touched you in any other form or fashion?
MR. BALDRIDGE: Objection. Form.
THE WITNESS: He put his hand under my
dress and grabbed my bare ass.

THE WITNESS: As soon as he grabbed my
ass, I became shocked and withdrawn and was barely able to say "Thanks for coming," which is what I say to everybody. I was barely able to get the words out, and it was like somebody switched the lights off in my personality. So it was pretty quick that he was gone after that.

Later on, she is asked again:

Q_ Do you recall meeting Mr_ Mueller2 A. Yes.
Q. Tell me -- te11 me about that.
MR. BALDRIDGE: Objection. Form_
THE WITNESS: Mr. Mueller and his friend,
girlfriend -- he and a woman walked in. I said, "Hi, thank you for coming to my show," introduced myself. He was very adamant in letting me know
that he was with KYGO and that he was with radio. And I said, "Well, thank you so much for coming. Thanks for everything. Would you guys like to get a photo?" And so then we get in a photo formation with me in the middle, and that's when right as the moment came for us to pose for the photo, he took his hand and put it up my dress and grabbed onto my ass cheek, and no matter how much I scooted over it was still there. It was not an accident, it was completely intentional, and I have never been so sure of anything in my life.

Later, they drop all pretense of politeness when referring to her booty.

(McFarland): Q. You have seen the picture, right? A. Yes.
Q. Is it your position that Mr. Mueller has his
hand underneath your skirt and on your a*s in that picture?
MR_ BALDRIDGE: Objection. Form.
THE WITNESS. In that photo he is in
progress of lifting my skirt in order to grab my a*s underneath it.

On the photo's vagueness:

BY MR. MCFARLAND: Q. He's not physically touching you in the
MR. BALDRIDGE: Objection. Form.
THE WITNESS. It's impossible for me to look at a photo and know that, but I was there, so I happened to have felt it as well.
Q. But at the time that picture was taken, his
hand was not on your a*s?
THE WITNESS: Like I said, when you look at a photo, it's impossible to know if that was the
moment before the moment of him grabbing it or the
moment when he was latched on and wouldn't let go even though I was squirming and obviously
lurching to the side towards his female companion because I was shocked and scared and stunned.
It's impossible to know if that was in the moment before or as he's grabbed on,
but I was there, so I felt it, so I didn`t just see it in a photo
afterward. I was also there - I experienced it. It
happened to me, so I'm positive that it did happen.

Mueller's lawyer makes her go through the whole thing one more time:

Q. When you looked at that photograph, you can't tell whether Mr. Mueller's hand was on your a*s at the exact moment that photograph was taken?
MR. BALDRIDGE: Objection. Asked and
answered. You may answer.
THE WITNESS: Do I go through this again?
MR. BALDRIDGE: Yeah, we're going to do
it one more time, I guess.
THE WITNESS: In looking at a photo, it's
impossible for me to definitively answer whether the moment captured on the photo is the moment directly before he grabbed my a*s, right when he grabbed onto my a*s cheek, or the moment when I was obviously squirming to the side because I was uncomfortable because a strange man's hand just lifted up my skirt and was either nearing my a*ss cheek, freshly grabbed onto or refusing to let go. But I was there, I felt it, I know it happened.

(Her lawyer thinks almost every question is asked in improper form. Lawyers always pepper depositions with objections like that and then the client is instructed to answer anyway. It seems like a pointless exercise. But in criminal law, we don't do many depositions, so maybe I'm missing something. It sure is annoying though when you are reading the transcript.)

Mueller's version is different. But his version has problems -- many problems. It's changed over time. First he denied touching her. Then he said if it happened, it had to be accidental. Then he said he didn't touch her bottom ever, and that in jostling to get into pose for the photo, their hands touched. Then he said she must be confusing him with his supervisor, who admitted to him that very night he had grabbed her bottom. (He's since modified that and today in his testimony backed off it.) Today he testified he only touched her rib.

Taylor Swift pooh-poohed all his versions and has been consistent in her version, which she reported to her mother in her dressing room as soon as the meet and greet was over. As to the hand-jostling theory:

Q. [McFarland] Do you remember, oh, kind of, you know, jostling with Mr_ Mueller's -- your hand and Mr. Mueller's hand kind of jostling as you kind of got into the photograph position? MR. BALDRIDGE: Objection_ Form.
THE WITNESS. That's not what happened at
Q. Your hands never touched – as you were getting into position for the photograph?
THE WITNESS. His hand grabbed my a*s, not my hand.

On whether she could have confused Mueller with his then supervisor, Eddie Haskell. (Eddie Haskell, as in Leave it To Beaver? Yes.) Only that's not his real name. Haskell's real name is Hershel Coomer. The pleadings refer to him as Hersel Coomer, PKA Eddie Haskell. I guess PKA (Publicly Known As) is a modern, less criminal-sounding version of an alias, which is AKA (Also Known As). It reminds me of the line in Glenn Frey's Smuggler's Blues: "Every name's an alias in case somebody squeals." That's not quite how a law-abiding music executive wants to be referred to, and some clever lawyer came up with PKA to use instead (probably before this lawsuit, but I don't follow enough celebrity lawsuits to know.)

Another problem with Mueller's "Eddie Haskell probably did it" theory, besides being late to the party. According to Taylor Swift, she knows Eddie Haskell quite well, having done business with him and met him numerous times over many years. And she's quite sure it wasn't Haskell who put his hand on her a*s.

There's also this problem with the Eddie Haskell theory. In a bit of "creative" testimony at his deposition, Mueller recounted Haskell's purported admission to him out of context. Mueller said Haskell told him that very night he had likely grabbed Taylor Swift's butt when he saw her that evening, that he was pretty sure she was wearing bicycle shorts under her skirt. According to Haskell's deposition, here's what the conversation really was:

Q So did you describe hugging Ms. Swift to Mr. Mueller? A I probably told him that she came up and said hi
and that we hugged.
Q Did you tell him that your hands were near her
A No.
Q Did you tell him that your hands touched her
A No.
Q Anything else that you can remember about that
A No. The only -- as we talked about it, I do recall we talked about the stage and that there was an area on the stage where Taylor would stand, the lights would go out, she would drop under the stage, do a complete wardrobe change and pop back up before the audience even stopped applauding. And I found it odd that she would be changing clothes in front of all of the stage hands and made the comment that she's got to be wearing bike shorts or something under her dresses, because she's changing right
there in public

That's quite a difference from Mueller's version which only included Haskell implied he grabbed her bottom and then said he thought she wore bicycle shorts underneath.

One last thing on the photo: Taylor Swift is reportedly (according to Haskell) 5'11 inches tall. How tall is Mueller? Can one of their lawyers ask both to stand up next to each other in front of the jury and have them turn around so the jury can see how long his arm is and how far down it would fall behind Taylor? If she's really taller than him, the hem of her skirt might have been just above where his hand falls naturally, making it easy to slip it up under her skirt. If she wasn't wearing underwear, and it sounds like she wasn't (although curiously, no one seems to have asked her that) it seems like it would be an easy maneuver to slide his hand up her skirt without lifting it and be right on her "cheek" as she puts it.

Mueller has other things working against him. His biggest problem may be that after lawfully but secretly recording a two hour long conversation with his two bosses the day after the concert, which he downloaded onto his cell phone and which was later transferred to up to four other devices (an external hard drive, two laptops, and an iPad or two) he now maintains that his phone and all four other devices had an accident, stopped working or were thrown away, leaving him without a copy. Before these devices met their maker or the trash bin, he had edited the call himself, sending parts to his lawyer. One device had coffee spilled on it, one had water spilled on it, one dropped to the floor and smashed into pieces, one was thrown away (his cell phone) and one, his external hard drive, stopped working for unknown reasons, was replaced and he doesn't know what happened to the first one. As a sanction for not preserving the recorded call, the Judge has ruled he can be questioned about not saving the evidence. Will a jury really believe him that not one, but four devices, experienced fatal problems? I'm skeptical.

Both sides have experts, whose testimony the Court has restricted, buy not excluded. Mueller's expert will testify about financial matters (trying to convince a jury that Team Swift is responsible for his incurring financial losses due to being fired as a result of the incident) and Team Swift is calling a professor in gender studies at C.U. Boulder to testify about sexual harassment victims and why they don't report it right away. I don't find the professor's opinion helpful. It seems like she's reducing Swift to a stereotype to make her seem like the "average" victim. In my view, stereotyping victims is as offensive as stereotyping alleged perpetrators of sex crimes. Everyone is different, has their own life experiences, their own triggers and their own emotional reactions. Juries don't need these experts. They have the ability to determine credibility based on the evidence and they can use their common sense.

If you are thinking of attending the trial, know that if you get into the courtroom, you can't leave until the Court takes a recess, which is usually close to two hours. (Shades of "You can check out any time you want, but you can never leave.") But there's also an overflow courtroom where you can watch on a monitor, which is a more relaxed atmosphere and sometimes your view is better. Courtrooms aren't built like movie theaters with sloped seats. They are flat, which means if you're stuck behind someone who is tall or has big hair or a big head, you won't see much since the witness stand is at the same level. In the overflow rooms I've been in, the TV's are mounted higher, so you can see from everywhere.

For legal analysis of the lawsuit, here's an 11 minute video interview with veteran Denver criminal defense attorney Scott Robinson, who has been providing excellent legal analysis for KUSA, the local NBC affiliate, for more than a decade. I really couldn't improve on it, so I'll just send you all there.

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  • Display: Sort:
    I haven't really followed this case (5.00 / 1) (#1)
    by McBain on Tue Aug 08, 2017 at 05:48:02 PM EST
    but I tend to agree with with Robinson's analysis.  From Jeralyn's link...
    "It's going to be a very difficult case for Mueller to win and the reason for that are two. One: the arguably damning photograph that has been made public by TMZ, but is absolutely going to be a cornerstone of Taylor Swift's case at trial. The other is the failure of Mueller to preserve the two-hour interview with his bosses that he claims was the reason that he lost his job."

    If nothing else, this case will probably set a record for most usage of the A word.

    What do you think, J, of Swift's repeated point (5.00 / 1) (#2)
    by Peter G on Tue Aug 08, 2017 at 09:08:53 PM EST
    that the photo shows her moving closer to the girlfriend and away from Mueller. She's a pro at posting for photos. The TMZ pic does show her "out of position," almost cuddling up to the girlfriend rather than centering herself between the two, as you would expect in a posed souvenir photo. I think she has identified another valid  point of circumstantial evidence from the photo itself, in addition to your point about the apparent bunching of the skirt. I also notice that her left arm is pointing downward, rather than up or over as it would be to put her arm around his shoulders. Again consistent with trying to get away from him.

    I see that clearly (none / 0) (#5)
    by Jeralyn on Tue Aug 08, 2017 at 10:21:28 PM EST
    The only way I could otherwise explain that cuddling up would be if Taylor had extended her arm at the last minute to wave him into the photo and moved closer to his girlfriend to show what she meant.

    But I just found an even better version at TMZ with no watermark, and here's my blowup with two arrows. You can see a sliver of his hand and it seems to be right on the skirt. The bump is also clearer.


    She looks like she is shying away (5.00 / 1) (#12)
    by Lora on Wed Aug 09, 2017 at 01:12:50 PM EST
    Swift's right hip is canted upward and rightward, into the female on her right, consistent with trying to move away from the man on her left.

    His right shirtsleeve is folded up a bit, similar to his left shirtsleeve, so I think we are actually seeing a bit of his arm or wrist, rather than his hand, which I would presume to be somewhere further back, consistent with potentially being under her skirt.


    But where is her left hand? (none / 0) (#6)
    by oculus on Wed Aug 09, 2017 at 01:42:46 AM EST
    Swift's left hand? (none / 0) (#9)
    by Peter G on Wed Aug 09, 2017 at 08:59:38 AM EST
    One of the places (other than his left shoulder) where you would expect it to be if she had been trying to pose with the couple for a photo -- reaching toward, or withdrawing from, the small of his back. His right hand, by contrast, is not reaching for either the small of Swift's back or her right hip, as it would if he were simply trying to position himself for the photo.

    I believe her. (5.00 / 2) (#7)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Wed Aug 09, 2017 at 07:54:06 AM EST
    I'm not a fan of Taylor Swift so I don't follow her, and this is the first time I actually heard about this incident and lawsuit. I believe her, if only due to her public stature. I don't see any incentive / motive on her part to lie about what happened during this encounter with a minor local Denver celebrity.

    Why do some grown men have such difficulty keeping their hands to themselves when they're around girls and women? They have no self-discipline and what's worse, they often perceive their lack of personal restraint as some kind of entitlement that's due them.

    It's not okay. Women should not have to endure such boorish behavior.

    OT- Jerry Garcia died 22 years ago today. (5.00 / 2) (#8)
    by Chuck0 on Wed Aug 09, 2017 at 08:37:35 AM EST
    Be nice to someone today.

    Peter g is again correct! Though (5.00 / 1) (#35)
    by oculus on Sat Aug 12, 2017 at 01:53:54 PM EST
    mom is still on the hook.  

    Gregory Dent recorded deposition (none / 0) (#3)
    by linea on Tue Aug 08, 2017 at 09:28:52 PM EST
    Former personal assistant says Swift was 'visibly upset' after meeting Denver DJ [9news.com]

    Dent was on Swift's security team at the time of this meet and greet. Dent told lawyers he had a direct line of sight of Swift, Mueller and Shannon Melcher, Mueller's then-girlfriend, at the time the photo was taken.

    "Before the photo was taken is when I saw him go to put his arm around her and him lift up her skirt," Dent said. "She reacted, pushed her skirt down, and jumped to the side and went closer to the girl that was with him."

    Seems like it (none / 0) (#4)
    by Lora on Tue Aug 08, 2017 at 10:18:07 PM EST
    From the details pointed out above, I don't find any significant holes in Swift's version.

    Underwear could have been worn. (And yes, you would think the question would have been asked.)

    Depending on the type of underwear worn, one's butt@ck (isn't that the proper word??!!!) could easily be exposed, in part, or even almost in full.

    I can potentially see a use for an expert on reactions to groping.  If you've never been groped (lucky you!), you might expect a more immediate, forceful reaction against the groper.

    How can you (5.00 / 1) (#10)
    by MKS on Wed Aug 09, 2017 at 10:57:34 AM EST
    "accidentally" grab a celebrity's backside, even outside the clothing?

    Wouldn't you be super-aware of what you were doing while standing next to a celebrity?  "Accidentally" brush up against her?   Not likely.


    Agree (none / 0) (#11)
    by Lora on Wed Aug 09, 2017 at 12:54:56 PM EST
    When discussing underwear, I did not mean to imply that there was a potential for an accidental grab.

    I was responding to the question as to whether or not Swift was wearing underwear, given that her alleged groper was touching her "bare" butt@ck.

    I was trying to say that even if she was wearing underwear, her butt@ck, under her dress, could still have been at least partly "bare," depending on the type of underwear she could have been wearing.  Or, a pair with a flared leg could have provided access to bare flesh to an intentional groper.

    No, if true, (and so far I don't see any solid evidence that counters her story), I don't think there was anything accidental about it.


    Grab, no... (none / 0) (#20)
    by kdog on Thu Aug 10, 2017 at 10:26:52 AM EST
    a brush against that could be perceived as a grab?  That could easily happen...if you go for the hand on the lower back photo pose you could accidentally put hand on butt cheek, celebrity or otherwise.

    The question is if there was any goosing...and that's gonna be hard to prove I would think.

    Reason for Swift to lie?  I can think of one big one...fighting the patriarchy can be a very profitable position for a female teen pop star to take.  Monetized feminism.

    All that being said, I could totally see a guy thinking it cool or funny to goose Taylor Swift during a photo-op.  Only it's not cool.


    The men I know, if they were to (5.00 / 1) (#21)
    by Anne on Thu Aug 10, 2017 at 11:37:31 AM EST
    accidentally make contact with a woman in any way that felt inappropriate, would act as if they had just put their hand in the fire, and would likely over-apologize for even incidental contact.

    I don't see any signs of "incidental" contact, or of "oh, my gosh, I'm so sorry - I didn't meant to touch you inappropriately!"

    As I understand it, Swift wasn't going to make this public at all - according to her mother, they decided they needed to bring it to the attention of the people this guy worked for - and it was only because he sued her for "getting" him fired that she countersued.

    So, sorry, but that doesn't fit any fact pattern that suggests she made the whole thing up to stick it to the patriarchy.

    And, for what it's worth, Taylor Swift is not a teenager - she's 27.


    ... as a man that women are initially quite reluctant to talk about being groped but when they do, they're generally being truthful in recounting such unwanted encounters. I would imagine that they're a lot more forthcoming about such matters when they're with other females.

    Still, I remember my late grandmother 30 years ago recalling her own experience during the early 1920s with a former boss at a downtown Pasadena bank, where she was then working as his secretary. He regularly used to corner her and cop a feel, most often after lunch if he'd been drinking, Prohibition notwithstanding. When she finally summoned up the nerve to talk to another superior about what was going on, she was told in no uncertain terms to shut up about it if she wanted to keep her job.

    The indignation that welled up in her 60 years later when talking about it made a huge impression upon me. She had never forgotten about what he did even after six decades, and it had remained an emotional scar and a real sore point. Nevertheless, she shared that painful and mortifying experience with her young adult and teenaged grandchildren, so that they might somehow avoid a similar situation themselves one day.

    Times have since obviously changed, and my grandmother's boss would likely lose his own job today for taking such indecent liberties with a subordinate. But it's unlikely that women's reactions to enduring such an assault have changed much at all -- and let's be honest here, an uninvited grope IS an assault.

    If nothing else, I'd hope that other women today who suffer similar unwanted advances would come forward, because men who engage in this sort of antisocial activity tend to not limit their attention to only one target. Such men should be outed and shunned. Women should not have to suffer such an affront to their persons, dignity and character.

    And guys like me, if we are indeed real men, need to make it perfectly clear to our male friends, teammates, colleagues, peers and subordinates that such egregious behavior toward women on their part is simply unacceptable in an enlightened 21st century Western society. Peer pressure on our own part can hopefully play an important role here in curbing the likelihood of such incidents occurring.



    I don't think she's making it up either... (none / 0) (#22)
    by kdog on Thu Aug 10, 2017 at 01:09:25 PM EST
    someone had asked why someone might make up such a thing, and I thought of a reason.  Girl power is big business these days much in the way male chauvinism was big business for hair metal bands in the 1980's.  

    Poor phrasing on my part, I was referring to the predominantly teen female fan base, not Swift herself.

    Too right on your first point...it's happened to me and mortifying over-apologizing is an understatement;)



    Unless...there are cameras and media (5.00 / 1) (#13)
    by Anne on Wed Aug 09, 2017 at 02:42:57 PM EST
    types all around and you're trying to do what you can to maintain at least the appearance of normalcy.

    And if the person allegedly doing the grabbing was taking advantage of the public venue, assuming Swift would not be making a scene over it.

    I guess the thing that annoys me is that somehow it is the reaction to being mauled that seems to allow others to judge whether she was as disturbed and offended by it as she says she was.  Kind of like someone being judged as not really having been raped because she didn't react the "right" way.

    I guess she could have immediately dropped her right arm down and grabbed a big ol' handful of this guy's crotchular area and said, "well, if we're grabbing body parts, two can play at this game, pal," but that really muddles things up.

    For what it's worth, that photo tells me she wanted to be as far away from that guy as she could get and that his hand is very likely doing exactly what she claimed it was.


    Yes, indeed (5.00 / 1) (#16)
    by Lora on Wed Aug 09, 2017 at 05:06:56 PM EST
    I, for one, was extremely well-schooled in not making a scene, especially over something as intimately embarrassing as anything to do with a private body part.

    Plus, being groped is so outrageous that at first, part of you is wondering if what you're feeling is for real. Then it sinks in.

    And, much as we might wish it wasn't a factor, perhaps there existed a good cultural dose of "if something like that happens to you, then you probably asked for it."

    As you mentioned, add in the public eye, and the image Swift was trying to maintain in front of fans, and it is no wonder she did not do anything directly to the alleged jerk.


    Here is another photo from that day: Photo

    Scroll down about half-way on the webpage. She is posing with two other women and a "bump" is clearly visible in her skirt on both hips.

    Also if Mueller's hand was high enough up under her skirt to be on her "a$$ cheek" I believe the skirt would show more upward "dishevelment" than the TMZ photo shows.

    Note that both the TMZ phtoto and the photo I linked to show a slight "upward" tilt of the skirt on her left side (the side Mueller was on).

    Also the angle of his arm looks to place his hand well below her "a$$ cheek."

    Thus, I do not believe the photo shows him groping her "a$$ cheek."

    That is not to say it could not have happened before or after the TMZ photo was taken.

    Great sleuthing. sarc... (none / 0) (#15)
    by fishcamp on Wed Aug 09, 2017 at 04:39:15 PM EST
    right about the dress (none / 0) (#17)
    by Lora on Wed Aug 09, 2017 at 05:16:06 PM EST
    Yes, the dress does look as though there are bumps or angles built into it, and it looks to be the same dress.

    If we are seeing part of his arm and not the wrist or hand, he could have bent his wrist to slide his hand up.

    If he did grope, I would assume he would not want to be obvious, and although I admit it doesn't look like it, it could be possible for him to angle his hand up.  Down at first, then keep the arm down so it doesn't show, and then angle that hand up...


    I bet she'd have found a way to iron that bump out, just as she once patiently and meticulously ironed away all the pleats to my younger sister's Catholic school uniform skirt.

    My sister was just ten years old at the time, and I can still hear her yelling at my mother, "I am NOT wearing a skirt looking like THAT!" She was so furious to the point of tears, even my mother was intimidated. So Mom spent several hours trying to restore the skirt pleats by iron, but to no avail.

    When my late aunt set upon a task, she was quite thorough. She always meant well, but there were times when she showed that she wasn't exactly the brightest bulb in the chandelier. This incident was one of them. I still laugh, though, when I think about it.



    wednesday, aug 9 update (none / 0) (#19)
    by linea on Wed Aug 09, 2017 at 10:43:57 PM EST

    Taylor Swift's mother says she didn't want alleged groping incident to "define her"

    Taylor Swift's mother on Wednesday told jurors she was horrified in 2013 when her daughter told her "a guy just grabbed my ass in the meet-and-greet," but that they decided not to go to police to avoid public scrutiny. ...

    At times becoming teary-eyed in the federal courtroom, Andrea Swift said after deciding to eject the DJ who allegedly groped Taylor Swift's butt, David Mueller, the team chose to go to his radio station managers rather than police in an effort to keep it out of the media.

    "I did not want this event to define her life," Andrea Swift told jurors. "I did not want every interview from this point on to have to talk about it...I did not want her to go through the endless memes and trolls and make her relive that awful moment." At the same time, she said, "we did not want him to get away with it." ...

    "I knew what happened," she told jurors before turning to Mueller. "I heard it directly from my daughter's mouth...He sexually assault her. Right there, that guy."

    thursday, aug 10 update (none / 0) (#23)
    by linea on Thu Aug 10, 2017 at 06:23:35 PM EST
    Live Updates: Witnesses Take The Stand To Back Taylor Swift On Groping Allegation

    Taylor Swift's backstage photographer testified Thursday that she witnessed a Denver DJ grab the singer's butt during a meet-and-greet in 2013.

    "I saw it happen. I saw his hand grab her ass," the photographer, Stephanie Simbeck, told jurors in Denver.

    She was referring to DJ David Mueller, who Swift alleges grabbed her butt under her skirt during a meet-and-greet photo op.

    Simbeck said she has taken thousands of photos of Swift backstage, but has never witnessed anything like that day.

    She and Swift's room manager, Erica Worden, both testified that after everyone left the room, the pop star told the team "that guy grabbed me."

    That's when they went back to Simbeck's photo and Swift immediately pointed Mueller out as the alleged culprit.

    Any of the other lawyers here (none / 0) (#24)
    by Peter G on Thu Aug 10, 2017 at 09:23:20 PM EST
    understand how all this hearsay is getting in? The mother's yesterday, and the manager today. Isn't the time after the incident too long for these repetitions of TS's assertions to be accepted "excited utterances"?

    I think it's probably (5.00 / 1) (#28)
    by Jeralyn on Fri Aug 11, 2017 at 01:44:35 AM EST
    the present sense impression exception

    The following are not excluded by the rule against hearsay, regardless of whether the declarant is available as a witness:

    (1) Present Sense Impression. A statement describing or explaining an event or condition, made while or immediately after the declarant perceived it.
    (2) Excited Utterance. A statement relating to a startling event or condition, made while the declarant was under the stress of excitement that it caused.

    what I find odd is that they are still on Mueller's case, and Taylor, her mother and Bell and Haskell have already testified. Why is Mueller calling them? Or did the defense call them out of order so they can leave town?
    Her mother apparently got sick this morning in court and the Judge allowed her to leave - court started pretty late.

    I actually got a press pass to be able to go but I have so many briefs due this week for a trial I start at the end of Sept. that I'm buried and haven't gone. I do get a nice update every day from being on the media list (about passes for the next day, and logistics, not testimony.)

    Taylor's conversations were right after the incident so I assume it's to show prompt outcry or present sense or something like that. Taylor told her bodyguard (who saw it) and the camera person (both saw something odd)  when they were still in the meet and greet room -- that's how they got to find his picture so fast and then go searching for him to toss him out.

    Judge Martinez is really big on following rules so I doubt anyone's overlooked anything. The pleadings on both sides are very professional.

    Taylor seems to be getting very good press for her feisty testimony. Her brother was there today, he's very handsome.

    Her mother has to finish her testimony tomorrow.

    There's two experts and several more witnesses, including Mueller's girlfriend who Taylor is calling.

    Also, in addition to the gender violence expert (my eyes roll every time I type that) Taylor is calling a computer forensics guy to talk about his unlikely version of what happened with his computers.

    Eddie Haskell testified today too, and said he didn't do it and he thinks Mueller did.

    I don't see a verdict for Meuller here.


    Called as hostile witnesses and (none / 0) (#34)
    by oculus on Sat Aug 12, 2017 at 01:52:38 PM EST
    subject to cross-exam by Mueller. That's my guess.  

    that was silly of him I think (none / 0) (#36)
    by Jeralyn on Sun Aug 13, 2017 at 04:02:34 AM EST
    Had he only put Mueller and his girlfriend on, he might have survived a motion for verdict at the end of his case. But by putting the adverse witnesses on, especially Swift, they overpowered Mueller and he lost the whole ball of wax as to her.

    Consistent prior statements? (none / 0) (#25)
    by MKS on Thu Aug 10, 2017 at 09:40:36 PM EST
    Boosting T.S. credibility?

    I mean, if you don't know, I am not sure how the rest of us are gonna help here...


    Bolstering credibility is the primary reason (none / 0) (#26)
    by Peter G on Thu Aug 10, 2017 at 10:02:58 PM EST
    that such evidence is not allowed; mere bolstering is improper, I thought. But trial evidence is not my strong suit as a lawyer. That's why I asked for reactions from the other lawyers, some of whom I know are much more experienced in the courtroom than I am. Sounds fishy to me.

    FRE 801(d)(1)(B) (5.00 / 1) (#37)
    by MKS on Sun Aug 13, 2017 at 06:43:55 PM EST
    Not hearsay.

    Once credibility is attacked (none / 0) (#30)
    by MKS on Fri Aug 11, 2017 at 11:05:19 AM EST
    then one can "bolster."   Here, the attack seems clear.....Whether you can use a prior consistent statement to bolster I think is okay but would have to look.

    The amount of time between the (none / 0) (#27)
    by oculus on Fri Aug 11, 2017 at 01:17:45 AM EST
    when the touching occurred and when Swift told others what happened is pertinent re admissibility  But also pertinent is the hearers' perception of Swift at the time she made the statements.

    From what I understand, Peter, ... (none / 0) (#31)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Fri Aug 11, 2017 at 08:11:05 PM EST
    ... both Andrea Swift and KYGO's Frank Bell were also named by David Mueller as co-defendants in his claim of tortious interference with contractual obligations and prospective business relations. Judge Martinez had already dismissed that particular claim against Taylor Swift earlier in the trial, but let it stand against her mother and Bell. So maybe that explains why Andrea Swift was on the stand yesterday. Not sure why the manager was testifying, though.

    no, no (5.00 / 1) (#33)
    by linea on Fri Aug 11, 2017 at 09:47:20 PM EST
    you have the sequence of events wrong.

    and shouldnt we be posting in the new #TaylorSwiftTrial thread?


    Judge dismisses suit against Swift (none / 0) (#32)
    by McBain on Fri Aug 11, 2017 at 08:32:22 PM EST
    U.S. District Judge William Martinez determined Friday that the pop star could not be held liable because David Mueller hadn't shown that she personally set out to have him fired after the backstage meet-and-greet in 2013. Mueller's identical allegations against Swift's mother and her radio liaison will go to the jury.