Opening Arguments Expected Today in Taylor Swift Trial

DENVER (CN) — Jury selection was to continue and opening arguments were expected Tuesday for a former radio host’s defamation lawsuit against Taylor Swift and her counterclaim that the DJ sexually assaulted her during a photo shoot.

Swift was in the courtroom Monday, as was David Mueller, the former DJ who Swift says groped her under her skirt during a photo shoot before her 2013 concert at Denver’s Pepsi Center.

Mueller, a former country music DJ for KYGO, sued Swift in May 2015, claiming her false complaint to his bosses cost him his job.

Swift countersued for sexual assault and battery in October 2015. The pop star said in her federal answer and counterclaim that she “has held thousands of meet and greet events for both fans and radio station personnel. In those thousands of events, she has been inappropriately groped one time — by Mueller — a radio personality.”

Among the questions asked Monday in pursuit of a jury of eight was whether members of the jury pool were fans of Swift’s music, and whether they had ever bought one of her albums or attended one of her concerts. Also asked was whether they had experienced inappropriate touching or knew someone who had, and whether they or someone close to them had been wrongfully fired.

In pretrial orders, U.S. District Judge William Martinez barred two of Mueller’s claims of slander, saying he did not want to discourage victims of sexual assault from coming forward.

Martinez also barred half of the testimony submitted by University of Colorado Boulder Professor Lorraine Bayard de Volo, Ph.D., head of the school’s Women and Gender Studies program. She described Swift’s profile as a sexual assault victim, and Mueller’s as a man with a powerful job.

Martinez will allow Bayard de Volo to testify why Swift might have waited to report Mueller’s alleged assault, but she will not be allowed to talk about why she believed Mueller might be prone to commit an assault because his masculinity had been threatened due to anxiety with his job.

Eight jurors were to be selected from a pool of 60, with no alternates impaneled.

Opened arguments were expected by Tuesday afternoon.

Mueller is represented by Gabriel McFarland of Golden; Swift by Brian Schwalb with of Venable Law in Washington, D.C.

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