Kevin Spacey Civil Trial Begins as Lawyers Deliver Opening Statements – Rolling Stone

Over two years after actor Anthony Rapp first filed a civil lawsuit in opposition to Kevin Spacey over an alleged sexual assault that occurred in 1986, opening statements within the trial happened Thursday in a Manhattan courtroom.

“What occurred to Anthony is one thing that by no means ought to have occurred,” Rapp’s lawyer Peter J. Saghir mentioned throughout his opening assertion. “The conduct right here concerned a 14-year-old boy and a 26-year-old man.”

Rapp, the primary individual to accuse Spacey of sexual misconduct in October 2017, alleged that Spacey groped his buttocks and compelled himself on him throughout a celebration in 1986. Rapp filed their declare beneath New York’s Youngster Victims Act, which permits victims of childhood abuse to deliver lawsuits over such crimes even after they’ve fallen outdoors the statute of limitations.

Rapp initially sued Spacey for assault, battery, and inflicting emotional misery, and whereas a decide dismissed the assault declare throughout the prolonged pre-trial proceedings, Spacey’s makes an attempt to have the lawsuit itself terminated have been denied in March 2022.

Throughout their opening assertion, Rapp’s attorneys additionally cited Spacey’s initial statement in response to Rapp’s accusations — the place Spacey mentioned he didn’t keep in mind the encounter however “if I did behave then as he describes, I owe him the sincerest apology for what would have been deeply inappropriate drunken conduct” — as proof that it occurred.

Spacey’s authorized crew countered that Rapp’s lawsuit was an try to achieve “consideration, sympathy and to boost his personal profile.”

“He by no means turned the worldwide star that Kevin Spacey did,” Jennifer Keller, an lawyer for Spacey, mentioned in her opening assertion. “He has been simmering and simmering with resentment all this time.” The protection additionally argued that Rapp’s accusations mirror scenes from the play Treasured Sons, which Rapp was starring in on the time of the alleged incident.

Rapp, who at the moment stars on Star Trek: Discovery, is predicted to testify throughout the civil trial, as will Andy Holtzman, one other alleged Spacey sufferer who claims the actor groped him years earlier. The New York Instances experiences that Spacey’s protection crew is predicted to name former Physician Who portrayer John Barrowman to the stand, as that actor was buddies with Rapp on the time and Barrowman’s remembrance of occasions differs from Rapp’s.

Exterior of the civil go well with, Spacey remains to be set to face trial on 5 sexual assault costs in London in June 2023. Spacey has pleaded not responsible to these costs.

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