On Monday, August 14, a jury of eight people sided with Taylor Swift in her assault-and-battery case against Colorado-based DJ David Mueller, whom Swift said groped her at a meet-and-greet event in 2013. After the victory, Swift released a statement of gratitude for the people who helped, and the 26-year-old pop star also included words of encouragement for anyone in a similar situation. She stated,
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.
In the statement (via People), Taylor Swift checked her privilege and indicated that defending herself is something she takes seriously, as she knows how many impressionable eyes are on her. Swift explained that she hopes to give a voice to people in similar situations. She stated,
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.
The groping incident happened four years ago at a meet-and-greet event. Taylor Swift maintained that David Mueller lifted her skirt and grabbed her behind. Mueller lost his job shortly afterward, and in 2015 he brought forth a defamation case against Swift and claimed her allegations cost him his job. Swift responded by countersuing Mueller for assault and battery. While Mueller wanted $3 million, Swift requested a single dollar in damages. In the end, the judge threw out David Mueller's case and sided with Swift in hers.
During the trial, the jury heard testimony from Taylor Swift, her bodyguard, her mother, and a photographer who took a picture in which David Mueller's hand appears to be on Swift's buttocks. When Swift took the stand, she spoke with exactness but also managed to use the word "ass" several times and get in some biting humor. At one point, Mueller's attorney asked Swift what she felt about the fact that Mueller had lost his job. Swift responded that she felt nothing about him but felt that what he had done was "despicable and horrifying and shocking." In fact, at one point Swift cleared up any uncertainty and said,
I am not going to allow you or your client to make it seem like this is in any way my fault, because it isn't.
Taylor Swift's fellow celebrities such as Kesha, Jaime King, Lena Dunham, Montel Williams, Amber Heard, Nelly Furtado, and James Corden reached out with words of support during and after the trial, especially after Swift's testimony. For example, Williams called her a "badass" and Furtado said she, too, had experienced similar situations, so she was proud of Swift for fighting for the safety of women in the workplace.
It is apparent that Taylor Swift's fans, social media followers, and fellow celebrities have been watching this case closely. Clearly, Swift rose to the occasion.