Saturday 24 August 2019

Kevin Spacey appears at court for hearing over alleged groping case

Kevin Spacey stands in district court (Nicole Harnishfeger/The Inquirer and Mirror/AP)
Kevin Spacey stands in district court (Nicole Harnishfeger/The Inquirer and Mirror/AP) Newsdesk Newsdesk

Kevin Spacey has arrived at a courthouse in Massachusetts where a hearing is set in the case accusing him of groping an 18-year-old busboy in 2016.

The former House Of Cards actor was not required to attend Monday's pretrial hearing in Nantucket.

Wearing a grey suit and glasses, Spacey walked into the courthouse with his lawyers.

Spacey has pleaded not guilty to a charge of indecent assault and battery.

His accuser says Spacey groped him in the crowded bar of the Club Car, where the teenager worked as a busboy.

On Friday, Spacey's lawyer Alan Jackson accused the man of deleting text messages that support Spacey's claims of innocence.

Mr Jackson wants the court to demand that prosecutors turn over a "complete and unaltered" forensic copy of the accuser's phone.

It is the only criminal case that has been brought against the two-time Oscar winner since his career fell apart amid a flurry of sexual misconduct allegations in 2017.

The case first came to light that year when former Boston TV anchor Heather Unruh said Spacey got her son drunk and then sexually assaulted him at the Club Car, a popular restaurant and bar on the resort island off Cape Cod.

Ms Unruh's son told police that he wanted to get a picture with Spacey and went over to talk to him after his shift ended at the Club Car, where he worked as a busboy.

The man said Spacey bought him several drinks and tried to persuade him to come home with him before allegedly unzipping the man's trousers and sexually assaulting him.

The accuser told police that he tried to move Spacey's hands, but the groping continued, and he did not know what to do because he did not want to get in trouble for drinking.

The man said he fled when Spacey went to the bathroom.

Spacey's lawyers have called the allegations "patently false" and accused the man of lying in the hopes of making money in a civil case against Spacey.

They argued that the two engaged in nothing more than "consensual flirtation" and questioned why, according to the man's story, he did not object or try to move away if he was being assaulted.

Judge Thomas Barrett has ordered the Club Car to hand over any surveillance footage taken around the time of the alleged incident.

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