DENVER – A federal jury in Denver on Monday found that Taylor Swift was assaulted and battered by former Denver DJ David Mueller when he groped her at a photo-shoot ahead of a June 2013 concert, and found that Andrea Swift and Frank Bell did not interfere with Mueller's employment.
The jury's decision came after about 4 1/2 hours of deliberations, which followed closing arguments made Monday morning.
Live updates from U.S. District Court of Colorado in Denver can be found below. Refresh page for the latest updates. (All times Mountain):
in a press conference after the trial, her attorney, J. Douglas Baldridge, said the victory was for more than just Taylor Swift.
"I think it’s a new day. It is a new day because someone with the guts and the courage to stand up, with absolutely no upside in doing so, that being Taylor Swift, has told everyone this is it. The line is drawn,” Baldridge said.
He said that though he was exhausted, he was pleased with the outcome, and said it would have wide-ranging effects on all people.
“Gosh, I’m going to drop. But I’m feeling good. Nothing like something truly good happening," he said. "Not just a win—but something that can make a difference for my kids, your kids—all of us. My son, my daughters—where the lines are. What’s right. What’s wrong. It takes people like Taylor—wonderful people like Taylor—to stand up and draw these lines.”
He said the $1 awarded to Swift is significant not in its monetary value, but in its symbolic value.
“As I said in the closing, that dollar is a single dollar, and it is of immeasurable value in this ever-going fight for us to figure out where the lines are, and what’s right and what’s wrong, and tolerance, and whose body is whose, and so on and so forth," Baldridge said.
Baldridge also praised the Colorado jury who found in Swift's favor, saying they were attentive and true to the law.
“How do I feel about Colorado? Could I tell you how appreciative we are of Colorado! And it’s not just that it’s a wonderful state, it’s a beautiful state: The people here know their civic duty. And that jury knew its civic duty," Baldridge said. "It understood the privileges that come with the Seventh Amendment to the United States Constitution also include responsibilities. And they knuckled down, and they did the right thing, and they listened to the evidence.”
Taylor Swift released the following statement:
“I want to thank Judge William J. Martinez and the jury for their careful consideration, my attorneys Doug Baldridge, Danielle Foley, Jay Schaudies and Katie Wright for fighting for me and anyone who feels silenced by a sexual assault, and especially anyone who offered their support throughout this four-year ordeal and two-year long trial process.
I acknowledge the privilege that I benefit from in life, in society and in my ability to shoulder the enormous cost of defending myself in a trial like this. My hope is to help those whose voices should also be heard. Therefore, I will be making donations in the near future to multiple organizations that help sexual assault victims defend themselves.”
A federal jury in Denver on Monday found that Taylor Swift was assaulted and battered by former Denver DJ David Mueller when he groped her at a photo-shoot ahead of a June 2013 concert, and found that Andrea Swift and Frank Bell did not interfere with Mueller's employment.
The jury also awarded Swift the $1 she had sought in her counterclaim in the suit. Mueller was awarded nothing because the jury found against him.
Taylor hugged her mother and attorneys after the verdict read, and her mother, Andrea, wept. Courtroom reporters said Mueller did not even glance at his attorneys as the verdict was read.
Heading outside now to see what kind of reactions we get and if Swift team will do a press conference.
The court PIO has informed us the jury has reached a verdict in the trial. Check below in Blair Miller's Twitter feed for the latest.
The parties have not reached a stipulation to answer to jury’s question.
Judge Martinez says they will be told the “court is not permitted to answer your question at this time.”
He says they must follow their orders as they are given.
We are back on verdict watch. Judge Martinez gave the jury until 5 p.m. to come back with a verdict, or they'll be sent back home until Tuesday morning.
All parties and counsel are present in the courtroom for this jury question at 3:40 p.m.
At 3:18 p.m., the jury asked Judge Martinez about the word “apprehension” in regards to the alleged assault, and how they should read their instructions regarding that word—if it only applies before the alleged assault or during the alleged assault.
“Any time during the alleged assault,” Baldridge says, saying that “prior to” would mean the victim would have to have anticipated the alleged assault.
“If it had to happen before the result, the jury is laboring under a mistake of law,” Baldridge argues. “If the jury were left to believe that apprehension of victim had occurred in advance of actual violation, the victim would have had to anticipate it was coming.”
He asks court for further jury instruction. McFarland asks for short recess to discuss with his team.
Judge Martinez allows both counsels a 10-minute recess to decide how to proceed.
— Blair Miller (@blairmiller) August 14, 2017
— Blair Miller (@blairmiller) August 14, 2017
The jury has a question to be posed to the court and counsel, so we are reconvening here in the next 10 minutes or so. This is not a verdict, according to court PIO.
Here is the wrap-up story of this morning's closing arguments in the case, which also details what comes next.
Want to read back through all of our coverage of the case? Click on the headlines below:
- Taylor Swift groping case: Live updates from Day 6 in Denver federal court
- 7 of the most eye-popping quotes from the Taylor Swift groping trial
- Claims against Taylor Swift dismissed in trial, but some proceed against mom and manager
- Judge to decide if claims should be tossed in Taylor Swift trial; closing statements set for Monday
- Taylor Swift's bodyguard testifies at trial: 'I don't believe I saw it. I know I saw it.'
- Taylor Swift groping case: Live updates from Day 5 in Denver federal court
- Taylor Swift fans not loving courtroom sketches of singer
- Confident Taylor Swift takes stand in trial: 'He grabbed my bare ass...I know it was him.'
- Taylor Swift groping case: Live updates from Day 4 in Denver federal court
- Taylor Swift's mother takes the stand in groping trial: Incident 'absolutely shattered our trust'
- Taylor Swift groping case: Live updates from Day 3 in Denver federal court
- Taylor Swift's defense team digs into former DJ in cross-examination to kick off trial
- Taylor Swift groping case: Live updates from Day 2 in Denver federal court
- Trial over Denver radio host accused of groping Taylor Swift starts in less than a month
If no verdict by 5 p.m., the jury will be instructed to leave for the day. Should that happen, they will be ordered back at 8:35 a.m. Tuesday, and to court at 8:45 a.m. before they go to deliberate again.
The parties are not supposed to be more than 15 minutes away at all times.
Judge Martinez thanks the counsel for their “very zealous” representation of their clients.
“It’s obvious you both very much believe…in your clients,” Martinez says.
We’re now in recess until there’s a question or a verdict from the jury.
Baldridge has 6 minutes for his rebuttal.
“What’s before you has been turned in its head,” Baldridge says. “That man is the plaintiff,” he adds, noting the burden of proof is on Mueller.
He says it’s “open and shut” that jurors should rule against Mueller, and in favor of Swift’s counterclaim.
“It’s absurd to suggest that all 8 of them are lying,” Baldridge says, adding that it’s “ridiculous” that Mueller, who allegedly destroyed evidence, is not the one lying.
“He lost his job because he grabbed her butt and he got caught. And now he’s trying to get you to victimize her again by saying he didn’t do it because he wants to save his butt,” Baldridge says to wrap his rebuttal.
“The guy did it. Don’t be fooled. Don’t be snookered. It’s time to stop the victimization of victims in this courtroom and in this country,” Baldridge says.
The jury now heads to deliberations. Judge Martinez giving instructions now.
“They didn’t do anything to get to the truth,” McFarland says. “It’s not fair…to make an allegation of sexual assault without doing an investigation. In fact, it’s reckless. I have a 13-year-old daughter…but the law should also discourage the false and reckless reporting of sexual assault…because people lose their jobs, their livelihoods. . . .The defendants didn’t take it seriously."
McFarland says he’s “confident” the jury will find in favor of Mueller. He thanks jury for time and attention.
“We appreciate it, thanks,” McFarland says.
Baldridge says “it’s ridiculous” to claim that nothing is happening in the photo, and notes that Swift said the photo captured “a moment in the process” of Mueller grabbing her rear end.
“Everyone is clear that they saw something weird there,” Baldridge says, including Mueller.
“That is an s(***)-eating grin,” Baldridge says of Mueller’s smile in the photo.
Baldridge says this is a “revenge story.”
“He was on thin ice. He was on thin ice with his job,” Baldridge says of Mueller.
Baldridge continues past his 50-minute allotted time for statements in his closing arguments. The remaining 10 minutes for his rebuttal are being stricken for every minute he uses.
Baldridge goes on to note that Mueller didn’t try and get any further jobs “of any true legitimacy” after being fired.
He says there’s “no doubt” that Taylor Swift was the victim of undesired contact.
“The single dollar I ask you to award her…is of immeasurable value. It means no means no. and it tells every woman that they will determine was is tolerated with their body,” Baldridge says.
Baldridge says “it’s ridiculous” to claim that nothing is happening in the photo, and notes that Swift said the photo captured “a moment in the process” of Mueller grabbing her rear end.
“Everyone is clear that they saw something weird there,” Baldridge says, including Mueller.
“That is an ass-eating grin,” Baldridge says of Mueller’s smile in the photo.
“It was an on-the-job, workplace assault,” Baldridge says, and notes that Mueller said that too.
Baldridge says that Andrea Swift knew there was a chance for abuse of her daughter.
“I personally did not decide that. We decided as a group,” Baldridge notes that Andrea Swift testified as for reasons why she had Bell report the alleged incident to KYGO.
“There’s not a chance that rationale for reporting was improper conduct,” Baldridge says. He says there’s no evidence otherwise proving tortious interference.
He says Frank Bell “did not tell Bob Call what to do.”
“Mr. Bell respected Mr. Call, no one disputes that. And he put it in Mr. Call’s prerogative as to what to do,” Baldridge says.
Baldridge notes Call interviewed all the people at the meet-and-greet, talked to other KYGO employees, and that Call testified that he had “credible information” from Bell, that Mueller had “changed his story” and that the picture showed Mueller’s hand was in a place “you don’t see at meet-and-greet pictures.”
Baldridge notes that Call said it didn’t “make sense” for Swift to make the claims, and that Haskell testified that it was KYGO’s decision to fire Mueller—not Bell’s or Andrea Swift’s.
“They decided what they saw, and they decided what to do,” Baldridge recalls.
Baldridge notes that McFarland asked Dent why they didn’t put together a “photo lineup” with all the people in the photo booth line that day.
“Here we have it. We have all the photos. Aha!” Baldridge says, pulling up the “lineup” he made of 19 photos taken from the photo booth that day.
“Clearly Taylor Swift had no idea that this guy, the guy with the smile—boy, she must have confused Mr. Mueller with one of these little girls or boys. It’s an insult,” Baldridge says.
“We’re not going to see a bunch of burly guys with mustaches, because Mr. Mueller clearly took care of that for us,” Baldridge says.
Then brings up the only other photo with an adult male that he has, and notes that man’s hand is “nowhere near” Taylor Swift’s rear end.
“I think it’s crystal clear there’s not a chance she misidentified this man in the line,” Baldridge says.
Baldridge says it’s a “perfectly good explanation” that the photo may have occurred directly after the alleged touching.
“Women who are attacked, women who are mistreated, generally don’t want people to know,” Baldridge says. “Women who are reported on worldwide definitely don’t want people to know.”
He scoffs at McFarland’s saying that Dent said he didn’t feel Swift was in any imminent danger, so he didn’t act.
“Like danger is the standard for a woman’s right to say no,”
“I didn’t say it was dangerous, I thought it was a violation of her body,” is what Baldridge reminds the jury that Dent said under witness examination.
Greg Dent was crystal clear in his testimony, Baldridge says, nothing that Dent said he knew he saw Mueller’s hand under Swift’s skirt.
Baldridge notes Taylor’s reaction in her own words: “It was like a light switched off on my personality completely.”
“That man (Mueller) deserved consequence for what he did, and for the pain he put on mother and daughter,” Baldridge says.
Baldridge says McFarland “trashed the credibility of witness after witness.”
He says nothing Simbeck said was untruthful.
“To attack her credibility—I don’t see it,” McFarland says.
He also says that Dent is credible—“He had no motivation other than to tell the truth.”
Baldridge says that Mueller had “every incentive to lie,” and that he “changed his story.”
“You’re going to believe him over the multiple people who have never changed their story over 4 years?” Baldridge asks the jury. “Folks, it’s not even a close call on credibility.”
“It’s a complete, made-up story to stick it to his boss two years after the fact,” Baldridge says of Mueller’s claims.
He goes back to Mueller’s claim that Haskell had told him he was the person who allegedly assaulted Swift, and that Mueller never told anyone else, and called it “silly or goofy” during testimony.
He then goes back to the federal lawsuit, saying that was the thing that brought all this forth, and that he made “shameful and cowardly” claims against both Swift and Haskell.
Baldridge then moves on to the “destruction” of the electronics, notes that McFarland said “things happen.”
“That’s an insult to me, and it’s an insult to you,” Baldridge says, noting that neither Mueller or his attorney tried to get hold of these electronics, which contained “critical events in this case,” including the meeting between Mueller, Call, and Haskell.
Baldridge also notes, as McFarland did in his closing argument, that McFarland didn’t seek other copies from other witnesses.
“’The defendants didn’t tell you what was there,’” Baldridge says McFarland told the jury. “Of course not, he destroyed it…and they’re asking you…to take his word for it that there was nothing there to look at,” Baldridge says.
“In the most twisted of circumstances, Mr. Mueller was seeking millions of dollars in damages…based on his wrongful contact…he was until he got on the stand,” Baldridge says, noting that Mueller’s criminal expert testimony of a $3 million claim was retracted, and that Mueller blamed it on McFarland for including that claim.
“In any event…even if he were damaged…he’s limited to a couple hundred thousand dollars of what was left on his contract. But he hasn’t been damaged, and we’ll get to that,” Baldridge says.
“The overriding question is: is the victimization going to stop here or is it going to go on?” Baldridge asks.
“There is no possible way the evidence supports the evidence…it is open, shut, case over,” Baldridge says. “Keep in mind here, the bad act is reporting it.”
He also says there’s “no way” that Mueller can meet the burden of proof against Frank Bell and Andrea Swift either.
“That offensive physical contact to have a 51-year-old touch your rear end…without your permission,” Baldridge says.
Going back to Swift’s testimony, in which she said she knew it was Mueller who grabbed her “bare ass,” he says the testimony shows that Mueller touched Swift inappropriately.
He says what staffers saw “has been written in granite” since they witnessed the incident 4 years ago.
“Everything is consistent—whether it’s the reaction of her face, the movement of the skirt, the pulling away in the photo—people told you what they saw, and it was all consistent,” Baldridge says.
“I’m not going to impugn [Mueller’s witnesses] the way he impugned Stephanie Simbeck,” Baldridge says, defending Simbeck’s testimony, but saying Kliesch had “nothing to say other than he (Mueller) is their friend.
The Swift team’s attorney, Doug Baldridge, now starts his closing arguments.
“I am not going to allow you or your client to make me feel like this is in any way my fault because it isn’t. . . .Isn’t that the real issue before you?” he asks the jury, citing the exact testimony of Taylor Swift.
“Will aggressors like David Mueller be allow to victimize their victims is what the question is. Will they be allowed to shame them, humiliate them, assault them? And to use the words of Andrea Swift, I don’t know whether to vomit or cry,” Baldridge says.
“Will aggressors like David Mueller be allowed to realize a payday for their conduct…just because they know they can walk away with it…because the victims will pay?” he continues.
He says that Swift is seeking “a single dollar” that is invaluable to women.
Baldridge asks the jury to find that “every woman -- rich or poor, famous or not -- that no means no.”
He asks if the jury will embrace the lines of what will and won’t be tolerated when a woman’s body is concerned.
McFarland has wrapped this portion of his closing arguments, and we're taking a 20-minute recess. He told the jury to close that he believes his client should be awarded more than $200,000 based on what he was paid out when he was fired, and what was left on his contract and endorsements.
Reporters from inside the courtroom just came back into the media room. They say Taylor Swift is wearing a black turtleneck dress, and that she both rolled her eyes and cried "a lot" during the closing arguments.
There are five elements the jury has to find in order to find against Andrea Swift and Frank Bell. McFarland now discussing those five elements, and how he thinks that Bell and Swift certainly knew about Mueller’s contract. “They wanted him fired from his job,” McFarland says.
“There’s really no question the defendants acted intentionally. They wanted Mr. Mueller to be fired. They testified that they wanted him fired, and they knew that KYGO was likely to fire him based on the allegation that he went under Ms. Swift’s skirt and grabbed her rear,” McFarland says.
He says Andrea Swift’s testimony showed that she wanted Mueller fired when she asked Frank Bell to contact Bob Call, and that Bell “expected” KYGO to fire Mueller.
Says Bell and Swift testified they expected KYGO to “take action” and “to do the right thing” regarding the allegations. He says that meets the bar.
“All of those terms are code for, ‘We want you to fire this guy.’ There’s no other way to read that,” McFarland says.
McFarland now talking about Mueller’s “morality clause” in his contract.
“It’s the defendants who made the false allegation. It’s the defendants…who had to get Mr. Mueller fired. They didn’t want to call police. They didn’t want to do any investigation, but it was serious enough they wanted to call his employer to get him fired,” McFarland says, saying that the Swift team called Bob Call to get Mueller fired.
“Why would Ms. Swift lie? I don’t know,” McFarland says. “I’m sure she thinks it’s true, but the photograph shows otherwise.”
McFarland again asks the jury why Mueller would blow up his “dream job” with his “best friend,” Ryan “Ryno” Kliesch.
McFarland also arguing that Mueller never changed his story—that he admitted to possibly incidentally touching Swift, but nothing else.
McFarland now brings up the Swift team’s claims that Mueller destroyed the full audio recordings of his meeting with Haskell and Bob Call the day after the alleged groping incident. He’s contending the full tape wouldn’t have shown anything beyond what evidence has already shown.
“Even the audio files – there’s no real question as to what happened. They only relate to the June 3 meeting…and there’s no real dispute about what went on at that meeting,” McFarland says. “Mueller denied it, but Lincoln Financial, KYGO…didn’t care.”
Again says photo doesn’t show Mueller grabbed Swift “under her skirt.”
He also again contends there’s “no evidence” that any of the audio recordings were contained on the missing/destroyed electronics—“that’s a distraction,” McFarland says.
He says that some of the text messages and emails involving Mueller and other witnesses could have been obtained from the other witnesses.
“There were no important emails, there were no important messages…just a red herring,” McFarland said. “We know things happen. Mr. Mueller spilled coffee on his laptop. The defendants didn’t preserve photos of the meet-and-greet.”
He notes Call took handwritten notes, then transcribed them onto his computer, then shredded hand notes. “Why didn’t I hit him on that?” McFarland asks. “Things happen.”
“So what do you do when the evidence doesn’t support?” McFarland says.
He says you deflect and distract.
He says it “doesn’t make sense” that Mueller was seeking money because he was making $150K at his “dream job.”
“He didn’t do it for money,” McFarland says, saying that “doesn’t make any sense.”
He says the $3 million claim was made up by Swift’s team, and that Mueller had “no desire” to be a “shock-jock”—McFarland again says, “That doesn’t make any sense.”
McFarland now contending that a “shock jock” would indeed have grabbed Swift, and would have boasted about it.
McFarland also says that Mueller never made the claim that Eddie Haskell had actually been the person who groped Swift, but calls Haskell an “odd” and “interesting” character.
He also says it is “curious” that Haskell allegedly made a claim about bike shorts.
McFarland says Shannon Melcher, who was Mueller’s girlfriend at the time, is the “most-credible witness.”
He details her testimony about how she was talking with Swift before the photo, and how she believed Mueller moved in at the last minute. He says that Melcher also noted that she never noticed any movements
“When you add up what we see in the photograph and what we’ve heard from the witnesses, there’s a few takeaways. Takeaway one is that Mr. Mueller and Ms. Melcher’s stories are consistent, they match,” McFarland says.
“Ms. Swift’s version of events, as it turns out, is inconsistent with every other member of her team in one way or another. It’s particularly inconsistent with Mr. Dent. And it’s also inconsistent with the photograph. The photograph doesn’t show Mr. Mueller’s hand under her skirt on her rear. . . .There’s inconsistency. Nobody saw what Ms. Swift said happened because it didn’t happen,” McFarland adds.
“This all started with Ms. Simbeck,” McFarland said, again saying “she’s not a credible witness…she’s still working for Ms. Swift.”
“She wants to keep that job,” he again says of Simbeck, trying to put the blame on her for starting everything.
“Then we were off to the races. Stephanie Simbeck—she didn’t look at any of the other photographs,” McFarland says, mentions that none of the other staffers or Swift didn’t look at other photos.
“We know that people make mistakes. . . .And people want answers,” McFarland says. “But there are mistakes made every day. But the idea that … the allegation of sexual assault, without even doing the bare minimum to find out what really happened, it’s not right. It’s not fair. It’s not reasonable,” McFarland says.
McFarland goes on to call Stephanie Simbeck, the photographer, the “least credible witness” the jury heard of, and blames her for starting it all.
“Her testimony makes no sense whatsoever,” McFarland says, details what he sees as difference in her testimony.
“She’s a deer in the headlights. She can’t answer that question. She has no idea,” McFarland says, recounting Simbeck’s testimony.
“There’s no way that Stephanie Simbeck say any inappropriate touching,” McFarland says, and says he believes the only reason that Simbeck is saying such things is because she still works for Taylor Swift and wants to keep her job.
He also says that Greg Dent, who was Swift’s bodyguard in the photo room, could have done something, but didn’t “because he didn’t see anything that caused him concern.”
“He didn’t see anything that made him think there had been any inappropriate touching,” McFarland says.
He also says that Dent’s testimony contradicted Swift’s on where Mueller’s hand went.
“You can’t reconcile those two stories. They can’t both be correct,” McFarland says. He also says that Dent says the photograph isn’t “proof of anything.”
Taylor Swift is continually dabbing her eyes as McFarland goes through is closing arguments.
McFarland brings up the photo in question once again.
“I submit to you that there is no way in this picture that Mr. Mueller’s hand is under Ms. Swift’s skirt and under her bottom. He’s not lifting up her skirt. Her skirt’s not disturbed. And the line of her skirt is straight. It’s not bent or ruffled at the side or in front. It’s perfectly aligned. And I think if you look closely at the bottom, you can see the front hemline of the skirt and you can see the back hemline of the skirt. . . .If this is a stiff material where the front moves when the back moves, it’s impossible that Mr. Mueller has his hand under her skirt and on her rear…it’s perfectly straight,” McFarland says.
He also continues that Mueller’s hand “isn’t low enough” to be under Swift’s skirt, and that he would have had to have bent down to do so.
“Interestingly, not a single witness there gave a single indication that they saw Mr. Mueller bend over, or lean down low enough to get his hand under Ms. Swift’s skirt. In addition, look at Ms. Swift’s face and ask yourself, ‘Is that the face of someone who just had a strange man grab their butt? Is that the face of someone who is in shock at what just happened, who’s upset? That’s the face of someone taking a photograph…participating in a meet-and greet. There’s nothing to suggest in Ms. Swift’s face that anything inappropriate has happened. . .I would submit it’s not plausible that someone, even who’s taken as many photos as Ms. Swift, can avoid that shock when something like this happens…it just doesn’t make sense.”
Mr. Mueller denies that he grabbed her rear end whatsoever, McFarland says.
These are the questions the jury will have to answer after their deliberations. All will have to be answered based on a preponderance of evidence.
Did Frank Bell or Andrea Swift intentionally interfere with David Mueller’s contract with Lincoln financial? If so for either, what amount is Mueller entitled to receive in damages?
Do you find David Mueller assaulted Taylor Swift? Yes or no.
Do you find David Mueller battered Taylor Swift? Yes or no.
If yes on either, do you award her in $1 in nominal damages? Yes or no.
David Mueller has the burden of proof based on the preponderance of evidence, Judge Martinez says.
No speculative damages for lost future income, so jurors cannot determine that Mueller could be awarded anything beyond the remainder of his two-year contract.
The jury can also find in favor of Mueller, but only award him nominal damages of $1 if jurors can’t determine the exact amount.
Judge now explaining compensatory damages—which can only be awarded if they are proven to be caused by defendants’ conduct.
Judge then goes into what jury must agree on to find in favor of Taylor Swift’s counterclaim on assault and battery. They must decide that, in the assault claim:
- Mueller intended to cause injury to Swift because of physical contact
- Placed apprehension of immediate physical contact
- Contact was harmful and offensive
For battery, the bars are similar, but the jury has to find that the physical contact was “harmful or offensive” and decide there is proof it happened.
Judge then goes into what jury should do when they convene to deliberate. They’ll have to select a floorperson who will speak for the jury, then review the guiding rules.
For Mueller to recover money from Andrea Swift and/or Frank Bell, all following must be proven:
- Mueller had contract w/ Lincoln Financial, which agreed to employ him at KYGO
- Defendants knew or should have reasonably known of his contract.
- Their words or contract led to the termination of Mueller’s contract.
- Defendants improperly interfered with the contract
- Defendants caused injuries and damages to David Mueller
If they don’t find all of those, then verdict must be for defendant. If they do find all of those, then they must find in favor of Mueller.
Conduct is intentional if a person acts/speaks and knows their actions or words are certain to bring about a certain result. Malice or ill-will don’t have to be part of these findings, but can be, Judge Martinez says.
The jury has been brought in and seated. Judge Martinez says we will be taking another recess after the 50-minute opening of Gabe McFarland’s closing arguments (he’s Mueller’s attorney).
Judge Martinez reading instructions to the jury, says it is their sworn duty to follow all the rules of the law: They can’t give anyone special attention, can’t follow their own notion as to what the law “is or ought to be” and that it’s their duty to apply the law as instructed by him.
“That is entirely up to you,” Judge Martinez says of the final verdict.
They can only base their verdict on the evidence, without any added bias.
“Do not let rumors, suspicions, or anything else you may have seen outside of court” affect your verdict in any way, Judge Martinez tells them. Only the evidence presented at the trial can be considered, he says.
He says not to speculate on what a witness or piece of evidence “might have” shown. But they are allowed to draw “reasonable inferences” from facts that have been proved.
Now discussing burden of proof in civil case versus criminal cases.
“Proof beyond a reasonable doubt” applies to criminal cases, but not civil cases. “Preponderance of the evidence” is the burden of proof here in this case.
Also tells the jury how they should take into account how witnesses communicated and the answers they gave—did they differ; were there discrepancies?
Today's message of support for Taylor Swift from the business across the street. They've been doing this since the trial started.
— Amanda del Castillo (@AmandaDTV) August 14, 2017
Attorneys for both parties will get 50 minutes for closing arguments and 10 minutes for a rebuttal. We’ve recessed for 15 minutes before the jury is brought in and closing arguments begin.
David Mueller’s attorney, Gabe McFarland, is asking about why there are two different jury instructions for defendants, and judge notes there are two defendants in the case. No objections otherwise.
Swift’s team objects to language of “certain result” versus what they’d like, “likely result,” but Judge Martinez objects, saying Colorado law is closer to “certain result.” Judge overrules another objection on language.
They object also to language regarding the causation for Mueller’s firing, ask for another sentence to be added, but Judge Martinez overrules that as well.
The two parties are now deciding over jury instruction over “terminable” employment contracts. Judge Martinez sides with Mueller’s attorney.
Swift’s team now asking judge to change jury instructions regarding future lost damages and income, and the time frame by which the jury should be allowed to possibly award further damages to Mueller if they find in his favor.
“Plaintiff must prove his damages with reasonable certainty,” is the sentence Swift’s team wants added to that section, and Judge Martinez allows it.
This argument was made because Mueller will only be allowed to seek damages for the remaining 2 years of his contract after he was fired.
The day will get underway Monday with a “charging conference” involving Judge William J. Martinez and attorneys from both Swift’s side and the side of David Mueller, the former DJ.
At the conference, the attorneys will review and finalize the instructions that will be given to the jury to decide the remainder of the trial.
After the conference is over, the jury will return to the courtroom and hear closing arguments from both sides, then will start deliberating.
But after Judge Martinez ruled Friday that Swift would no longer be party to the lawsuit filed against her and her team and tossed out four of the five claims against the defendants, there will only be one claim moving forward originally filed by Mueller.
That claim—tortious interference with contract claims—is only moving forward against Swift’s mother, Andrea Swift, and her manager, Frank Bell.
Taylor Swift’s counterclaim against Mueller will also be moving ahead. It involves claims of assault and battery.
As in all cases, the jury will have to reach a unanimous verdict to find any of the parties guilty of something.