3:14pm PT by Rob Levine, Billboard
Taylor Swift Speaks of Feeling "Violated" in Deposition for Alleged DJ-Groping Lawsuit
Taylor Swift succeeded in her effort to keep from the public a photo of a DJ allegedly groping her during a 2013 pre-concert meet-and-greet when a judge on Friday decided to seal the pictures. However, the judge's decision to deny Swift's request to withhold other evidence in the case means the transcript of her July 26 deposition about the alleged incident is now publicly available. In the deposition, Swift is asked to recount the incident in detail several times, and speaks of her embarrassment and discomfort at the time.
The photo is evidence in a lawsuit that arose after a June 2013 concert, when Swift’s security team accused Denver radio DJ David Mueller of grabbing her inappropriately while they posed for a photo backstage with several other people. Two days later, Mueller was fired from his job at KYGO radio. In 2015, Mueller sued Swift, saying her accusation was false and that he lost his job as a result.
Swift’s lawyers argued that the photo shouldn’t be shared because “it is all but assured that the photograph will be shared for scandalous and prurient interests,” and that it could potentially influence a jury. The judge agreed, but ruled that other evidence in the case shouldn’t be held back.
A transcript of Swift’s videotaped deposition gives her account of what happened: “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.” That means it wasn’t an accident, Swift says. "It was completely intentional, I've never been so sure of anything in my life."
Swift also recounts how much the alleged incident upset her. “I remember being frantic, distressed, feeling violated in a way I had never experienced before,” she said in the deposition. “A meet-and-greet is supposed to be a situation where you’re thanking people for coming, you’re supposed to be welcoming people into your home, which is the arena for that day, and for someone to violate that hospitality in that way, I was completely stunned.”
Mueller later sued Swift for slander, saying that he may have touched her by accident, and that it was actually his former boss who grabbed her. After Mueller sued Swift, she countersued him for assault and battery, saying she would donate any money she won to charitable organizations that work to protect women from sexual assault.
The filing of the deposition was in support of Swift's attempt to win the case before it goes to trial.
Swift’s lawyers also recently filed a motion for summary judgment, arguing that she didn’t intentionally interfere with Mueller’s contractual relationship with KYGO, and that the statute of limitations had run out for his slander claim. Mueller, the motion says, “was terminated by his employer, KYGO, after its own independent investigation of the incident.”
A rep for Swift had not responded to Billboard's request for comment at press time.
This article originally appeared in Billboard.com.