Taylor Swift groping case: Live updates from Day 2 in Denver federal court

Posted at 5:38 AM, Aug 08, 2017
and last updated 2017-08-09 11:29:43-04

UPDATE (Wednesday, Aug. 9): The Day 3 live blog is here. Read a wrap of Day 2 by clicking here.


DENVER – Day 2 of the Taylor Swift groping case is underway Tuesday morning. The eight-person jury has been seated, and opening statements are expected shortly. Refresh page for the latest.

Live updates below (All times Mountain):

4:58 p.m.

After wrapping up the questioning regarding how Mueller felt in the room with Swift, Judge Martinez adjourns court until 8:45 a.m. Wednesday. We'll be back for more coverage Wednesday, and will have a wrap-up story up soon.


4:56 p.m.

Baldridge again goes back to Mueller’s deposition, when he said Swift was “cold and standoffish” toward him when he first entered the room in which the photo was taken.

Baldridge says that Mueller said he felt slighted and that he deserved respect as the KYGO morning show host. Mueller said that Swift was more attentive to his girlfriend, and that Swift never acknowledged him to come take a photo.

"Everybody deserves professional respect," Mueller said.

Baldridge presses Mueller: “You felt like you were invisible.”

He notes that is what Mueller told him during their deposition, but says he did “not feel like” he was “alone.”

Baldridge also notes that Mueller told him in his deposition that he felt like he was “on his own” shortly after he and his girlfriend had entered the room.


4:21 p.m.

Mueller admits that he had “difficult times” working with Haskell, who was his direct superior, and admits that Haskell had threatened his employment before the Swift incident.

Haskell said he had a “tremendous amount of respect” for Haskell as an on-air talent, but said he was sometimes unprofessional.

Baldridge forces Mueller to admit that he felt disrespected by Haskell before the Swift incident, and said it was “abundantly clear” Haskell was vindictive.

Mueller also admits there were instances before the alleged Swift incident that made his life hard at KYGO.

Mueller admits his talent agent told him that KYGO was discussing possibly terminating Mueller for-cause for insubordination if they didn’t follow directives from Haskell. This happened before the incident with swift.


4:09 p.m.

Many of the questions Baldridge is posing to Mueller come in regards to Mueller’s deposition more than a year ago.

Baldridge keeps noting that since there are no electronic devices still available, there is no way to prove whether or not Mueller changed his story in the middle of the conversation, which Mueller said during his deposition was about 2 hours long.

Baldridge keeps bringing up Call, the GM at KYGO, whom Mueller had said in his deposition was not a man who would be untruthful.

But Mueller now says he can think of an instance now in which Call was untruthful. Call and Haskell have both alleged the Mueller lied to them in depositions that were under oath.

He notes that it wasn’t the Swifts calling him a liar, but rather KYGO employees, so why didn’t he sue KYGO, Baldridge asks.

Baldridge keeps asking why some of these electronic items were thrown out before Swift's team could analyze them, to which Mueller says he wasn't aware they would all be considered evidence.

"In any event, this jury will never know," Baldridge says.


3:55 p.m.

Swift’s attorney, J. Doug Baldridge, is pressing Mueller on everything he’s said so far. Judge Martinez has to step in at one point as the back-and-forth gets testy. He granted Mueller more time to answer Baldridge’s questions.

He tells Mueller the court will never get to know the full recordings because they were lost or destroyed. Swift’s team is alleging there were five devices, while Mueller says there were four.

Baldridge also presses Mueller on if he advised his girlfriend, Shannon Melcher, to allege to KYGO human resources that a KYGO had touched her inappropriately. He admits he advised her to go to HR.

Baldridge goes back to an old deposition he did of Mueller, pointing out that during the deposition, Mueller said there was approximately 2 hours of recordings of the meeting between him, Call and Haskell.

Baldridge notes that only 14 minutes of the recording ever made it to record.


3:43 p.m.

Swift’s attorney, J. Doug Baldridge is now cross-examining Mueller.

He points out that KYGO fired Mueller—not Swift or her mother—and that Mueller sued them, and not KYGO, Haskell or Call.

Baldridge also points out that Mueller filed his lawsuit publicly, making public all the allegations contained within the case. Baldridge making the point that Mueller harmed his own job search.

Baldridge also brings up 2-year-old deposition he did on Mueller in which Mueller could not identify a reason for Swift to want to be involved in the ongoing lawsuit.


3:36 p.m.

Mueller’s attorney asks him why he brought this lawsuit.

“I want to clear my name,” he says.

He says the accusations and termination cost him his career – “…the thing I love to do: radio. It cost me my income,” he says.

He says the ordeal has been “hard” on his family, friends and his ex-girlfriend.

“It’s a humiliating experience to be accused of something that despicable. It’s a horrible thing I’m accused of, and I want to clear my name,” Mueller said.

He said there is no specific dollar amount he is seeking in the trial, and that he wants the jury to come up with a number he believes is fair, Mueller said.

He says he’s put out feelers for jobs—dozens of them, he says—but that no one has offered him employment in the radio field because he hasn’t been able to clear his name.


3:28 p.m.

The courtroom sketch artist has released a new sketch of today's proceedings, with Mueller on the stand (sketch courtesy Associated Press):


3:08 p.m.

Mueller’s attorney continues the questioning regarding where the recordings went. Mueller admits the audio files are no longer on his laptop, which he says was essentially destroyed when he spilled coffee onto his keyboard in August 2014.

He brought it to an Apple Store, where he said workers told them there was “nothing that could be done” other than replacing the hard drive, or scrapping it.

He says his iPhone, which originally had the recording, was damaged in November 2015, and that the audio file wasn’t on it when it was damaged.

Mueller also says he had an external hard drive—a Superdrive—that he hoped would be a way to back up his laptop. But he says he never knew if the external drive had the recordings on it, and when he tried to access the external drive in July or August 2015, that it didn’t work. Apple Store workers couldn’t get it to work either, Mueller said.

Mueller also says he had an iPad, but that the only way anything involved in the recordings sent to his attorney would be contained within that would be via the emails he sent his attorney.

The judge has now called another 20-minute recess.


2:54 p.m.

Mueller is asked blatantly by his attorney if he destroyed evidence, as Swift’s team has alleged. He says he didn’t.

He says he transferred the entire recording of his meeting with Haskell and Call over to his laptop because his hard drive on his phone had little space, and he wanted to record videos of a concert at Red Rocks he would be attending.

He says he transferred the recording to his laptop and deleted it from his phone sometime between June 3 and June 13.

He says in September 2013 that he gave his lawyer portions of the audio, which were sent in 19 different, isolated clips.

“I was going through the full file, and I was isolating clips I thought would be helpful to you in order to understand what they were accusing me of,” Mueller tells his lawyer.

He says he did not purposefully omit portions of the recording that may have been “hurtful” to him, and denied that any portion of the recording was harmful to him.

The allegation that Mueller destroyed the tape in question is one of the primary lines of questioning Swift’s team plans to explore.


2:36 p.m.

The 10 a.m. meeting that had been scheduled that morning was pushed back to 3 p.m., according to Mueller. Mueller says he called his talent agent and asked her to be on the phone for the meeting, which he says he did because he was worried he might get fired.

“I did it because I wasn’t comfortable going into a meeting with them alone, and when they pushed meeting from 10 to 3, and the way it was related to me, I got impression that they were thinking about getting rid of me,” Mueller said. The agency opted not to join the call.

He says he went into the meeting wanting to know what he was being accused of and who was making the accusations, and ended up recording the conversation.

He denied to Haskell and Call that he’d touched Swift “inappropriately.”

But he also admitted when asked by his attorney that he never brought up what Haskell had told him about Haskell apparently grabbing Swift’s bottom, nor did he tell Call that Haskell had apparently made comments about Swift’s “biker shorts.”

His attorney asked why he never brought those comments up.

“In my mind, it wasn’t as if Eddie was confessing. I thought it was as if he was telling me one of his goofy stories,” Mueller said.

Mueller said he left the meeting with Haskell and Call telling him they’d figure something out and that he was still on paid suspension.

But the next day, he was sent a package by courier that had his termination letter and last paycheck.


2:30 p.m.

At some point after the conversation with Haskell, Mueller and Melcher were hanging out inside the Pepsi Center awaiting the show.

Mueller says a security guard came up to him and started accusing him of grabbing Swift, holding up the photo in question with Mueller, Swift and Melcher.

Mueller says the security guard made a comment about where Mueller’s hand was in the photo, and accused him of grabbing Swift’s bottom.

He says he admitted only to touching her during the photo, but not inappropriately, and started asking for his boss, Haskell.

Mueller says he also continually asked the security guard to get police involved if there were serious allegations, but no police ever came.

Eventually, Mueller says, more security guards arrived, and he and Melcher were kicked out of the Pepsi Center.

Later that night, Mueller says, Haskell called him and told him he was being placed on a paid suspension “until [he] figured out the details” of the allegations made by Swift’s team to Haskell and the KYGO, Bob Call.

Haskell scheduled a meeting for the next morning for Mueller to come in and talk about the incident with him and Call.


2:05 p.m.

David Mueller says that after the meeting with Swift, he eventually met up with Eddie Haskell.

Haskell told him that while he was meeting Swift, she gave him a hug, and he put his hands on her bottom.

Mueller alleges that Haskell talked about how Swift must wear biking shorts because she changes wardrobes so often during her shows.

But Mueller says he has no “actual knowledge” of whether or not Haskell actually touched Swift, saying it could be “a fishing tale” that Haskell was telling. Mueller says Haskell was known to tell tall tales.

But Mueller also admits that he doesn’t believe Swift mistook Haskell for Mueller.


1:59 p.m.

David Mueller is discussing the details of what happened on June 2, 2013 in the photo booth where he allegedly groped Taylor Swift.

He says he and his girlfriend, Melcher, walked into the small room, shook Swift’s hand and said hello.

Mueller says he complimented Swift about how “she’s so good to her fans,” and Melcher talked about how happy the young girls in front of them in line were to meet Swift.

The three made small talk, according to Mueller, before Swift said, “Hey, how about a photo.” Mueller was speculating she was trying to move them along.

Mueller says between the time they entered the room and the photo was taken, about 30-40 seconds had elapsed.

As they got together for the photo, he said he had his right arm extended with his hand closed and his palm facing down.

“My hand came into contact with part of her body,” Mueller said, saying he “felt” like it was contact with her rib or rib cage.

His attorney asks if there was any chance he accidentally touched Swift’s bottom, to which Mueller replies, “No.”

He says his hands and arms touched Swift’s as they were trying to get together for the photo, but said he didn’t remember Swift putting her hand on his body.

Asked specifically if there was any inappropriate contact, Mueller says no.

He says that there were no signs from Swift or her team of people in the room that there was any suggestion something had happened.

Mueller says he doesn’t believe Swift was uncomfortable around him, and says he didn’t notice if Swift was ever moving away from him during the photo.


1:38 p.m.

David Mueller is now on the stand discussing the day of the alleged groping incident and Taylor Swift's show afterward.

He and his girlfriend, Shannon Melcher, traveled to the show together and were to meet up with some his KYGO coworkers.

As they stood in line to get into the VIP photo area, Mueller estimates there were approximately 70-90 people in line as well.


1:35 p.m.

Denver7's Marc Stewart did a Facebook live interview with University of Denver Law School professor John Campbell during the lunch break, where they discussed the jury and today's opening statements. Watch by clicking here or in the player below.



12:17 p.m.

Mueller is asked if he was aware of Taylor Swift’s music when he and Melcher decided to go to the show.

“I wouldn’t say I was a fan, but I liked her music. The songs I heard were good,” Mueller says. Says KYGO was playing her older music in June 2013, but wasn’t playing music from record she was promoting at time.

When questioning gets to the day of the alleged assault, Judge Martinez calls for a lunch break. Court will resume at 1:30 p.m. Jurors are being provided lunch, “In an effort to help insulate [them],” Judge Martinez said.

The jury is comprised of six women and two men.


12:03 p.m.

David Mueller says he had two contracts terminated over the years: In 2001 in Kansas City, and in 2005 in Minneapolis. He says that he was never accused of any inappropriate conduct at either job, and that those contracts ended for other business reasons.

Questions then move to relationship between Mueller and Eddie Haskell, his boss at KYGO.

“It could be difficult. It could be unprofessional. There were difficulties that didn’t need to be there,” Mueller said.

He said it’s fair to say both he and Eddie Haskell had trouble working with one another.

Mueller says he believes Haskell threatened his employment before the Swift incident ever occurred.

Mueller says Haskell wanted to hire someone named “Cadillac Jack,” which Mueller and Kliesch opposed, and that during a meeting with Haskell, alleges Haskell called himself “vindictive.” Mueller says this is why he believes his employment was threatened.

He estimates it was less than two months before the Taylor Swift concert.

He also said there was another instance in which "getting out of contracts" was discussed in May 2013. But he says Call, the general manager, never gave an indication that Mueller's job was "on the line," nor did anyone else "directly," according to Mueller.


11:47 a.m.

Mueller says he and Kliesch were happy with their new jobs.

“Just two guys who were friends – being themselves on the radio.”

When asked if it was a “shock-type” of a radio show, Mueller says no, and that the show was OK for children to listen to.

“We were told how much we could talk and what to talk about,” Mueller said.


11:34 a.m.

The plaintiff's attorney calls the plaintiff himself, David Mueller, as the first witness. They are currently going over Mueller's post-high school jobs. He started in Minnesota, eventually moved to California and moved his way up the radio ladders as various companies changed hands.

He was offered a big morning show gig in Columbus, Ohio, where he was executive producer and on-air every day for the morning show. He worked at that job for about 1 year, he says.

Other people started approaching him about new jobs, and he ended up taking a job in Kansas City with a friend of his, Ryan Kliesch, whom he later ended up working with at KYGO.

He moved to Minnesota for several years, where he worked for a radio company and small radio business. He then moved on to KYGO in Denver to reunite with Kliesch, who had been working in Nashville.

"It was a dream come true," Mueller says of getting the job at KYGO with his friend. Says he'd wanted to work with the ownership company and in Colorado for some time. He says both him and Kliesch immediately resigned from their jobs "to do this dream job."

He had a two-year guaranteed contract, with an option for a third year that was to be decided by KYGO.


11:30 a.m.

“What possible motivation could Ms. Swift have to be here? [Mueller’s] motivation is clear,” Swift’s attorney, J. Doug Baldridge says.

Baldridge alleges that Mueller knew he was about to be fired, so he cast blame elsewhere.

“He wants you to give him 15 times the amount left on his contract,” Baldridge says of Mueller.

“Ms. Swift has countersued for assault. She wants $1. She’s not trying to bankrupt this man. She’s trying to tell people out there that you can say no when someone puts their hand on you,” he continues. “Grabbing a woman’s rear end is an assault, and it’s always wrong. Any woman – rich, poor famous or not – is entitled to have that not happen.”

“Thank you for your time. Let’s go get it,” Baldridge says, wrapping his opening statements.


11:14 a.m.

“Eddie Haskell did not touch her. She’s absolutely sure of that,” Baldridge says. Says Haskell was with Swift’s mother, Andrea, who is in court today. Says Haskell and Swift had a long relationship.

“What’s wrong with this picture? A woman is assaulted. A woman reports it. And she gets sued,” Baldridge said.

Baldridge said after the meet-and-greet, Swift told the remaining four people in the photo room, “Dude, that guy just grabbed my ass,” and says her other staffers in the room will testify that they saw Swift react.

She waited until Baldridge left room to report, he says. Then a staffer ushered her to her green room and had a “private moment” with her mother. Andrea Swift wasn’t happy, Baldridge said.

“After years and miles of protecting her daughter, it finally happened. Someone old enough to be her father touched her in the wrong way—an assault.”

Then Swift played concert.

Swift’s team met with Frank Bell of KYGO to tell them, Baldridge says. Bell, confidentially, spoke with Bob Call, and Call eventually made decision to fire Mueller, allegedly because Mueller changed his story.

Baldridge notes that Mueller never blamed Haskell in the original job-status meeting, which Mueller recorded secretly – “It didn’t come up until two years later,” Baldridge says.


11:07 a.m.

“It’s not inappropriate touching. It’s assault," says Swift's layer, J. Doug Baldridge. "And Ms. Swift reported it. An assault in the workplace by that man right there, David Mueller.”

Baldridge goes on to say that Mueller "is trying to make the victim pay the price" and that Swift is taking "a stand for all women."

He says that Mueller destroyed several computers over the years related to the case.

He also argued that Mueller has told "six different stories" about what happened, and that he heard a seventh today.

"Will you make her pay the price three times," Baldridge asks the jury, saying Swift was first touched, then sued, and now Mueller is trying to get money from her.


10:58 a.m.

Mueller's attorney, McFarland, ponders why no one in the room during the photo acted on anything before wrapping up his closing statements. He says if someone had noticed something inappropriate, the many staffers of Swift's who were in the room at the time would have acted.

Swift's attorney, J. Douglas Baldridge, has opening statements next.


10:50 a.m.

Mueller’s attorney alleges that there was pressure from Swift’s mom and dad, who were “extremely upset” about the “extremely serious situation.”

“Taylor’s relationship with KYGO could be gravely impacted and they are considering all their options. That means we want you to fire him,” McFarland said.

KYGO’s Robert Call said there’s photographic evidence. He didn’t talk to any witnesses.

Mueller “unequivocally denies” he put hand under her skirt and grabbed her bottom, according to McFarland. He denies he touched her inappropriately in any way whatsoever. There was physical contact when they went in for picture, some “jostling” of hands, McFarland says, but nothing inappropriate.


10:45 a.m.

Mueller and his girlfriend, Shannon Melcher, went to Pepsi Center “VIP” room to meet with Swift, though Mueller “wasn’t a big fan,” his attorney says.

The two meet with Swift, introduce one another, and get into photograph position.

Melcher was closer, and Mueller was “taken by surprise” and “jumped into” the picture before it was taken.

Swift shook Mueller’s hand, gave Melcher a hug, and the two left. Mueller went to meet Eddie Haskell.

Haskell “said something strange,” according to McFarland. “I think she was wearing bike shorts,” McFarland says Haskell told Mueller.

The entire time – from when they left photo booth, met back up with Melcher, then went back into Pepsi Center, was 15-30 minutes, according to McFarland.

When they tried to re-enter, Mueller was accosted, according to McFarland, and asked about the incident.

On June 3, Haskell, Mueller and their bosses met. The next day, Mueller was fired on basis he had violated a “morals clause,” according to McFarland.


10:35 a.m.

David Mueller's attorney, M. Gabriel McFarland, begins opening statements.

Inappropriate touching is “offensive, it’s wrong and it should never be tolerated,” the lawyer says. “Falsely accusing someone of inappropriate touching is equally offensive, equally wrong and should not be tolerated.”

He says the case isn’t about whether touching is wrong – “we know it’s wrong,” he said. “This case is about whether Mr. Mueller took his hand and put his hand underneath Ms. Swift’s skirt and grabbed her rear. Did he hold on as she tried to get away?”

He says the second question was if Mueller was fired as a result of the accusations Swift’s team leveled at him to his employer, KYGO.

Mueller got into radio in 1994, and when he was offered the KYGO job years later, it was his “dream job,” according to his attorney. He got a $25,000 signing bonus on top of his contract, which was for $150,000 per year.


10:30 a.m.

Court is back in session. Taylor Swift and her mother are here, as is David Mueller. Swift has her hair pulled back and is wearing a dark blouse.


9:54 a.m.

U.S. District Court of Colorado Judge William J. Martinez has sworn in the eight-person jury panel and is now giving them instructions on how to conduct themselves during the trial.

They are not allowed to discuss the trial with anyone, or tell them which case they are a juror on, until the jury goes to deliberate.


9:51 a.m.

The court is taking a 30-minute recess to bring members of the public and the press members allowed into the courtroom. The jury will also be shown where their deliberation room is -- "your home away from home," Judge Martinez says.

It will also be the first glimpse at the makeup of the jury.


9:47 a.m.

Judge Martinez is now going over the parties and facts of the case before we get to opening statements.

Read the list of juror questions here.


9:29 a.m.

An eight-person jury has been seated in the case and will be sworn in shortly. The juror numbers who have been seated are: 313, 335, 734, 171, 367, 155, 395, 593. Judge Martinez thanks jurors who weren't selected for their time.


9:24 a.m.

The court clerk tells us in the media room that the court is close to seating a jury. There is no photography of any kind in the courtroom or the media room.


9:12 a.m.

The juror pool has been narrowed to 16 potential jurors. The defense and prosecution will now each get to strike four jurors apiece, leaving the final eight who will be seated.

Taylor Swift and former KYGO DJ David Mueller are both in court this morning. 

The court hopes to have a jury seated by noon so opening statements can get underway.


9:00 a.m.

At least two potential jurors out of the 60-person pool were dismissed Monday when they said they had biases against Swift and David Mueller, the former KYGO DJ accused of groping her during a photo opportunity ahead of a 2013 concert in Denver.

To see the photo at the center of the lawsuit and counter-suit, click here.

The trial is expected to last about two weeks, and court documents say it’s unlikely either side will settle.

Denver7 will be in court throughout the trial, and will be posting live updates from U.S. District Court of Colorado in this space. Refresh the page for updates.