Kevin Spacey not liable for battery, Jury says

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Image Source: NBC News

A New York jury on Thursday found actor Kevin Spacey not responsible for violence. On charges that he lifted actor Anthony Rapp and laid on top of him after a party in 1986. This was a win for Kevin Spacey.

After an hour of deliberation, the jury decided that Rapp had not established that Kevin Spacey had “touched a sexual or personal portion” of Rapp.

Judge Lewis Kaplan officially dismissed the case. As soon as the verdict was announced, the attorneys seated on either side of Spacey put their hands on his back.

Rapp, well known for his part in “Star Trek: Discovery,” claimed that Spacey, who was 26 at the time, had brought him to his Manhattan home. Where, without Rapp’s permission, he scooped him up, placed him down on his bed, grasped his buttocks, and crushed his groin into his body.

After Rapp’s attorneys rested their evidence, the judge dismissed Rapp’s claims of deliberate infliction of mental distress and assault. Leaving the jury to decide solely on the battery claim. According to New York law, the battery is the offensive touching of another person without that person’s consent.

Nonetheless, a victory, but more charges await Kevin Spacey

The case was particularly troublesome legally since the jury could only hear the battery claim. After the court dismissed the assault and intentional infliction of emotional distress counts, according to Jackson.

However, considering additional charges that “hang over him, including criminal proceedings in the UK.”

The result was a “Pyrrhic victory” for Spacey.

With this lawsuit and the one earlier dismissed in Nantucket, Spacey has now prevailed in two instances where he has been accused of sexual abuse. After that, however, he will have difficulty defending himself against multiple accusers and more serious criminal allegations in the UK.

In May, the Crown Prosecuting Service in Britain charged Spacey with four charges of sexual assault against three men and one offense of inducing a person to engage in penetrative sex without consent. Spacey has entered a not-guilty plea to the accusations.

In the Nantucket case, a man claimed Spacey sexually assaulted him while he was a restaurant busboy at 18. Spacey had entered a not-guilty plea. After the accuser invoked the Fifth Amendment while testifying and was questioned about his missing cell phone and if he deleted text messages, prosecutors ultimately decided not to press charges against Spacey.

What was said by lawyers during closing arguments?

Richard Steigman, the attorney representing Rapp, claimed Spacey had manipulated his testimony during the trial to support his defense. He cited Spacey’s 2017 apologies to Rapp for coming forward.

In contrast to his client’s unedited evidence, Steigman dubbed Spacey’s testimony as rehearsed.

Steigman rejected the defense’s claim that Rapp wanted to expose Spacey’s homosexuality.

Keller, Spacey’s attorney, said that when Rapp came forward, he “hitched his wagon” to the Me Too cause.

Keller claimed that Rapp stole the details of the purported incident from a nearly identical scene. From the Broadway play “Precious Sons,” in which Rapp co-starred with Ed Harris in 1986.

Read Also: Kevin Spacey returns to court on Thursday 

The defense attorney for Spacey asked the jury not to compromise their decision by finding Spacey guilty of battery. But only awarded Rapp one dollar in damages as a result of their findings.