Tuesday marked day two for the trial of former country D.J. David Mueller, who is accused of groping Taylor Swift in 2013 at a meet-and-greet in Denver. Tuesday’s cross-examinations revealed that Swift and Mueller have starkly contrasting accounts of the incident, and that Mueller’s own hurt feelings—both in the moments leading up to the alleged assault and after he was fired by his radio station—may be central to the case presented by Swift’s team.
Per Billboard, Swift’s attorney, Douglas Baldridge, began by stating that Mueller, whom Denver station KYGO hired to host morning show “Ryno and Jackson” for a yearly salary of $150,000, had felt slighted by Swift when he had to wait in line to meet her instead of being treated as a V.I.P. He said that when Swift bonded with Mueller’s then-girlfriend, Shannon Melcher, as the two met the singer for a photo, Mueller became jealous. Later, while on the stand, Mueller admitted to feeling disrespected by Swift.
“When she didn’t invite me over to pose for the photograph with her, I considered her cold and stand-offish,” he said. “She didn’t acknowledge me.”
The stories in this trial remain vehemently different, and in Mueller’s case, varying. Swift accuses Mueller of “improperly and inappropriately groping” her when they posed for the photo. A photo obtained by TMZ shows the D.J. with his arm behind Swift and pointed toward her backside (not her rib cage, which Mueller said in court he believed he was touching). Mueller was later fired by KYGO, and according to Swift’s team in court, he has changed his account of the event several times—at one point alleging it was his former boss, Eddie Haskell, who had bragged of groping Swift. (In court, Mueller denied he had pointed blame at Haskell.)
The D.J. filed suit against Swift in 2015 for defamation, after her team informed his employers of the alleged assault and Mueller was fired as a result days after the 2013 incident. Swift countersued for assault and battery. But Mueller has held fast to his claims that he did not grope the singer. Per The New York Times, Mueller’s girlfriend at the time, Melcher, also said she did not notice anything unusual about the scene.
Swift insists it was Mueller who groped her, and her team pointed to the apparent inaccuracies in his story. “He destroyed the evidence,” Baldridge said. “The alibi that the other guy [Haskell] did it didn’t come up till two years later.” Baldridge said Tuesday that Mueller secretly recorded meetings with his employers before they fired him, and Mueller later admitted on the stand to destroying all devices which held the recordings.
Swift did not speak at the trial Tuesday, as she sat with her hair in a bun. The courtroom sketch, which many say depicts a woman who looks nothing like Swift, shows the singer glaring in Mueller’s direction.
The jury, made up of six women and two men, will continue to hear Mueller’s testimony on Wednesday. Swift is also slated to testify later in the trial.
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