The Gaza Post|The News of Palestine-USA
Taylor Swift is in court over claims a former DJ sexually assaulted her before a concert.
David Mueller denies groping the pop star as they posed for a photograph but said he may have touched the her ribs with a closed hand.
The former DJ told jurors at the civil trial the he and Swift were trying to reach around one another and “our hands touched and our arms touched”.
His evidence comes as part of a duel lawsuit filed by Mueller and Swift.
He is seeking at least three million dollars (£2.3 million). Swift has countersued Mueller for a symbolic $1, claiming sexual assault.
Swift has said she is “absolutely certain” she was sexually assaulted was the DJ who groped her as they posed for a photographer backstage in Denver in 2013 with Mueller’s girlfriend.
The jury was shown the photo by Mueller’s lawyer, Gabriel McFarland, which shows Mueller with his hand behind Swift, just below her waist. Both are smiling.
“If you look at that photograph, his hand is not underneath Miss Swift’s skirt, and her skirt is not rumpled in any fashion,” Mr McFarland said, noting that no-one on Swift’s concert team saw anything amiss.
Her lawyers have called the photo “damning” proof that Mueller groped her
In his opening statement, Douglas Baldridge, a lawyer for Swift, asked jurors what possible reason his superstar client would have to make up an allegation.
“That’s the one and only story we have to tell you – that Mueller grabbed her rear end,” he said.
Mueller’s lawyer told jurors that inappropriate touching is wrong, but falsely accusing someone of the offence is equally unacceptable.
Mr Baldridge disputed that description of the incident and instead called it an “assault”.
Swift is expected to give evidence in the case, along with members of her entourage.
About 25 members of the public watched the trial after queuing for access passes.
Three high school students showed up before dawn to secure a spot in court.
“I love how she’s suing him for one dollar because she doesn’t need the money but she wants to make it a point that women don’t need to take this,” said Vega Zaringlee, 12.