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Actor Cuba Gooding Jr. was arrested Thursday for allegedly groping a woman at a Manhattan bar on Sunday. The actor pleaded not guilty to one misdemeanor account of forcible touching and was released without bail.

Attorney Mark J. Heller, representing Mr. Gooding, told reporters that his client is “completely confident” and “will be totally exonerated,” according to The New York Post.

“There is not a scintilla of criminal culpability that can be attributed to Cuba Gooding Jr.,” Heller said, adding that he was “shocked and horrified” about the prosecution of Gooding even after police were provided surveillance footage of the alleged incident.

On Tuesday, Gooding told TMZ that the surveillance video from the bar would exonerate him; it will show “what really happened, and that’s the most important thing,” he said.

The surveillance video in question was obtained by TMZ. At around 10:15 p.m. the accuser (whose face has been blurred to keep her anonymity) sits down next to Gooding and his girlfriend Claudine De Niro at the Magic Hour Rooftop Lounge New York City. “Almost immediately you see Gooding reach over Claudine and place his hand on the woman’s left thigh,” the outlet reported (video, below). “A few seconds later his hand moves up to her breast, and the accuser puts her hand on his. What happens next is open to interpretation — she either pushes his hand back toward him, or he pulls her hand to his mouth and kisses it.”

Then an unidentified man walks over and talks to Gooding, De Niro, and the accuser; the group soon talks seemingly without any argument.

“However, about 30 minutes later … Cuba and Claudine were downstairs lounging on a couch and making out. A man, who we’re told works security for the bar, was standing next to the couch when the accuser approached him and started arguing,” TMZ noted. “We’ve blurred her face to protect her identity, but she appears to say, ‘Yes, he did.’ She repeated that after the security guard shook his head. It’s unclear if Cuba heard their conversation, but he got up, stumbled and then walked right past the accuser and left.”

In 2017, Gooding responded to accusations of sexual misconduct after he lifted the skirt of actress Sarah Paulson, a friend and “American Horror Story” colleague of the actor’s, at a promotional event with a live audience.

“I love the lady that is Sarah Paulson,” Gooding responded, according to HuffPost. “We have a banter like brother and sister, which is how the spirit of that whole panel was.”

“Yet that image was taken out to represent some kind of sexual misconduct, and that wasn’t my intent,” he continued. “The first person, when I heard about the fervor, I called Sarah, I said, ‘I love you, I see you as my sister,’ and she said, ‘I feel the same way about you.’ And so I let it go.”

The Oscar winner described the mishap as a “‘teachable moment’ for his sons, who are in college, about how images can be misinterpreted on the internet,” noted HuffPost.

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11 Comments

11 Comments

  1. PT

    June 15, 2019 at 6:03 pm

    I’ve watched this 3 times. I can’t see what she is talking about.

  2. USJoeFreedom

    June 15, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    All look intoxicated…Nothing looked conceptual…This is just another gold digger trying to get money. Women are evil af.

    • USJoeFreedom

      June 15, 2019 at 7:10 pm

      Everything looked conceptual…

  3. Mark

    June 15, 2019 at 7:17 pm

    They were all drunk are heavily intoxicated. Even Gooding was stumbling about. The rest was a set up to get money from Gooding.

  4. John Isbell

    June 15, 2019 at 7:40 pm

    If you hang out in the gutter, you’re going to get dirty. Buyer be ware!!

  5. Paula Blissett

    June 15, 2019 at 7:54 pm

    Yep! Gold digger! That’s the call i make on this one, Some women ARE evil….., it’s called the easy way out! Shame Shame, and all were intoxicated…..

  6. Matt

    June 15, 2019 at 8:59 pm

    She seemed to touch him, first.

  7. Pat

    June 15, 2019 at 9:01 pm

    False accusation. Although conceptually it’s consensual. This “accuser” would be wise to stay anonymous. Drinking or being drunk excuses nothing. The video quality is so-so. We might see something on a better version, otherwise she needs to hire a defense attorney.

  8. Grace Joy

    June 15, 2019 at 11:17 pm

    He put his hand on her thigh; & she didn’t pull away. He then MAY have put his hand on her breast; she didn’t pull away; & his gf didn’t seem to notice. At :58, he reaches out & puts his hand on the guy’s thigh. The guy is hugging Gooding, another guy. These people are drinking & being a bit touchy. If this woman is so fragile, perhaps she shouldn’t be out drinking with people.

  9. Daniel Brofford

    June 16, 2019 at 8:43 pm

    It’s all about the money from what I see. If he had done something wrong she would not have waited until later to say something. The police should be ashamed of theirselves. They should not have arrested him.

  10. Cindy

    June 17, 2019 at 12:03 am

    Cuba Gooding is too smart to be in this bar. He should know better, but he will when he has to literally pay for it. If he needs to get drunk, he should do so at his private residence, and stop hanging out with whores and gold diggers. I’m so disappointed in him, because I thought he was different. He is probably getting set up, but he shouldn’t be abusing alcohol and acting like a man whore.

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