Revealed: The picture of Taylor Swift and Denver DJ David Mueller backstage being used as evidence in groping trial as the star shows up at court during jury selection
- Jury selection for the trial of former Denver DJ David Mueller versus Taylor Swift began Monday at the at the Alfred A. Arraj Courthouse in Denver
- Mueller accused Swift of fabricating an incident where he allegedly groped her in 2013 which caused him to be fired
- He is seeking $3 million in damages and Swift is expected to take the stand during the trial
- Swift counter-sued the DJ for assault and battery in response, saying he put his hand up her dress
- Details of the incident will be aired in court over the next nine days and the jury selection is expected to be completed by Tuesday afternoon
- Swift showed up to court Monday via a side entrance, wearing a white dress and black jacket
- One juror has recused himself on grounds of having friends who were sexually assaulted
Details of how a Denver DJ allegedly groped Taylor Swift are set to be aired in court over the next nine days, as her long-running legal battle in the 2013 sexual assault case will be decided in a jury trial.
Jury selection got underway in Denver, Colorado, Monday afternoon. The singer, 27, was in court, making her way inside via a side entrance.
Soberly dressed in a white dress and black jacket, Swift sat silently beside her attorney, Douglas Baldridge, as proceedings got underway.
Former radio host David Mueller, 55, was in court and arrived with his lawyer Gabriel McFarland. Swift's attorney Douglas Baldridge was also present.
This photo of Shannon Melcher (left) and David Mueller (right) with his hand behind Taylor Swift at the Pepsi Center was leaked last year. Potential jurors were asked if they had seen this image which was obtained by TMZ
Jury selection began Monday for David Mueller's lawsuit against Taylor Swift. The pop star counter-sued him for assault and battery
Taylor Swift is expected to take the stand in a lawsuit against David Mueller, a former radio host
Several prospective jurors were quizzed by Judge Martinez over their knowledge of the case, including a woman who had seen a photo of Swift and Mueller taken at the time of the alleged groping incident.
The photo, obtained by TMZ, shows the pair backstage at the Pepsi Center. It was due to be submitted as evidence but leaked at the end of 2016.
Judge Martinez said: 'The photo is out there on the internet. I ordered that it not be put out at the time but even federal judges cannot do everything.'
Another woman was asked about a sexual assault she herself had endured but told the Judge that she had recovered from the ordeal and did not believe it would affect her ability to make a decision on the case.
Juror 734 was asked about her liking for Swift's music, telling the court: 'I do have a positive image of her [Swift]. I don't listen to her a lot.'
Asked if she was a fan of the singer, she said: 'Not particularly, no, but she's good. I do follow her.'
The process is expected to be completed by Tuesday lunchtime with opening arguments from both sides due to be heard tomorrow afternoon.
One juror recused himself on grounds of having friends who were sexually assaulted.
A second juror was ruled out by Judge Martinez at the request of Swift's legal team after he confessed to looking at the leaked photo and said he thought it was possible he thought it could have been altered.
Juror 632 said he thought the picture could show inappropriate touching but also believed it could have been edited by the media to cast Mueller in a bad light.
Baldridge said: 'His responses indicated that he had already pre-judged the physical evidence.
'He voiced unsupportable theories about the photo being altered.'
Mueller's counsel objected to the removal on the grounds that the man was merely 'curious' but was overruled by the judge.
The trial has now been adjourned until 8.30am tomorrow morning.
Tree Paine (center) Taylor Swift's publicist, walked in to attend the jury selection phase in a civil trial to determine whether a radio host groped the pop singer
Swift and her mother Andrea will both take to the stand during the trial, as will Mueller and Shannon Melcher – his co-host on the day of the alleged assault and his girlfriend at the time.
The star was accused of launching 'a crusade for women's rights' during jury selection.
Gabriel McFarland, who is representing former radio DJ David Mueller, made the claim while attempting to strike out a prospective juror whose wife teaches female empowerment workshops.
McFarland told Judge Martinez the man would find it 'difficult' to go home if he found against Swift and accused the singer of making the case about more than the alleged 2013 groping incident.
He said: 'Miss Swift in this case has taken a position that isn't just about what happened between her and David Mueller.
'She has turned this into a crusade for women's rights, women's issues.'
He also attempted to remove a woman who is thought to have suffered a similar incident, saying it would be 'unfair to ask her to be impartial' in the case.
Both requests were overruled by Judge Martinez, although he did allow the removal of prospective juror 457 who had already told the court he would find it impossible to be unbiased because some of his friends had endured sexual assaults.
Speaking early in the proceedings, the man said: 'I've had friends who have had similar experiences. I still have that personal investment.
'They claimed it several years ago but I can't say there wouldn't be any bias that might affect my decision.'
The juror questionnaire asked how familiar potential jury members were with Taylor Swift and Mueller. It asked questions such as whether or not they had attended Swift's concerts, listened to her music or bought her albums.
Media gather outside the Alfred A. Arraj United States Courthouse ahead of the Taylor Swift trial in Denver. Colorado
The incident occurred in 2013, when Mueller (right) was a morning host at a Denver radio station. Swift said he took 'his hand and put it up my dress and grabbed onto my ass cheek'
The trial is the climax of a long-running legal fight that began in September 2015 after Mueller sued Swift for $3 million over an alleged groping incident that took place in June 2013.
Mueller says he was falsely accused by the Wildest Dreams singer of putting his hand on her bare backside during a meet and greet at Denver's Pepsi Center.
In his complaint, he also says he told a member of Swift's security detail to contact the police when confronted about the alleged assault but claims they called his bosses instead.
Two days after the incident on June 2, 2013, he was fired from his $150,000-a-year job following an internal investigation conducted by Lincoln Financial Media.
Mueller filed suit on September 10 2015, claiming that Swift and her management team deliberately interfered with his career and wants to be awarded damages of $3 million.
Prospective jurors were asked if they had formed any opinions about the case
Swift counter-sued the following month for assault and battery, saying in her complaint that 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'.
She is seeking a verdict that awards her $1, while holding Mueller responsible and 'serving as an example to other women who may resist publicly reliving similar outrageous and humiliating acts'.
At the time of the alleged grope, Mueller, then 51, was a radio DJ employed by a country music station in Denver.
According to the civil complaint, seen by DailyMail.com, he was ordered by bosses to attend Swift's show and a fan meet and greet on June 2.
He met the New Romantics singer backstage in a curtained-off enclosure and posed for a picture with her and Melcher before leaving.
During that time, Swift claims he reached under her dress and grabbed her bare bottom – telling court in a sworn deposition that 'it was not an accident'.
She added: 'It was completely intentional, and I have never been so sure of anything in my life.'
The juror questionnaire document (pictured) asked potential jury members if they were fans of Taylor Swift and her music
The jurors were asked if they went to Taylor Swift's concert in June of 2013, the year after she released her album Red
A fan waits outside at the Alfred A. Arraj Courthouse where jury selection began on Monday
Swift showed up to court through a side entrance away from the massive media presence near the main entryway
A photograph taken on the day is expected to form part of the evidence against Mueller and shows him posing with the singer and Melcher.
In it, Mueller's hand is hidden behind the singer near her bottom but he claims the only physical contact they had was when their arms brushed as they took their positions.
The DJ says as many as 20 other people could have been in the room at the time and insists the security guard present did not react to anything during the meet and greet.
Mueller claims he was later confronted by one of Swift's security guards over the allegation and told the man he should call the police.
The juror questionnaire asked if the potential member knew the radio personalities on KYGO Radio where Mueller used to work. It also asked if the potential juror knew Swift's mother Andrea who is expected to testify during the trial
He and Melcher were then escorted out of the Pepsi Center and he was fired two days later, after Swift's radio promotions manager Frank Bell told Mueller's bosses about the incident.
The police were not called because of Swift's wish to keep the situation 'discreet and quiet and confidential', according to her attorney Douglas Baldridge.
Mueller's lawyer, Gabriel McFarland, has argued in previous hearings that he could be the victim of mistaken identity.
Baldridge, meanwhile, has said Swift is upset by Mueller's claim that 'for some reason she might have some incentive to actually fabricate this story.'
A number of fans are expected to attend the trial, with 32 seats in the public gallery being made available each day.
The nine-day hearing, at Denver's Alfred A. Arraj courthouse, will be presided over by US District Judge William Martinez.
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