Sexual Assault Case Against Kevin Spacey On Shaky Ground

In this file photo taken on June 21, 2016, US actor Kevin Spacey arrives at a fashion show in Milan, Italy. Filippo MONTEFORTE / AFP

 

Kevin Spacey may avoid trial for sexual assault, as the case against him suffered a serious blow Monday when his accuser declined to testify due to fear of self-incrimination.

William Little accused the actor of groping him in a Massachusetts bar in July 2016. The actor, 59, was charged in January with indecent assault and battery.

The Massachusetts District Court judge for Nantucket, the posh island community where the alleged aggression took place, called on Little Monday to testify. Spacey was not present in the court.

But Little chose to plead the Fifth Amendment, which allows citizens not to testify so as not to incriminate themselves after it was revealed his cell phone — a key piece of evidence in the case — may have been compromised.

Little has said he took a smartphone video of the incident, which he says took place when he was an 18-year-old busboy in a Nantucket bar and restaurant.

The smartphone images, which Little said he shared with a then-girlfriend and a group of friends, allegedly show Spacey shoving his hand into the teen’s pants and fondling him.

But the phone — which the defense wanted to examine – has disappeared, as confirmed by Little and his parents, who were also called upon to testify Monday.

A police officer said he returned the phone to the family after extracting all the information but admitted he neglected to ask for a receipt upon return. The family said they never received the phone.

Interrogated at length about what he did with the phone and the messages on it, Little insisted that he had not deleted anything.

But when warned that manipulating the information on the phone could result in charges being brought against him, Little pled the fifth.

Little’s mother Heather Unruh, a television news anchor known in the Boston area, admitted she had deleted some potentially embarrassing photos before giving the phone to the police but said she had not erased anything related to the alleged assault.

Spacey’s lawyer Alan Jackson insinuated that text messages from Little — who was a fan of the actor — that implied his consent in the situation had been deleted.

“This entire case is completely compromised,” said Jackson.

“This case needs to be dismissed and it needs to be dismissed today.”

Although the judge did not make a decision, Spacey’s defense team added it would promptly request that the case be dropped.

The prosecution did not rule dropping the case, but asked the judge for a week to decide.

Spacey has insisted on his innocence in the matter. The charges carry a penalty of up to five years in prison.

The allegation of sexual misconduct against the two-time Oscar winner was one of more than a dozen to emerge since 2017 in the wake of the #MeToo movement – in both the United States and Britain — with devastating effect on his acting career.

He was dropped from the cast of the popular “House of Cards” series and from a leading role in director Ridley Scott’s “All the Money in the World,” Christopher Plummer was brought in as a last-second replacement.

Kevin Spacey Due In Court Over Sex Assault Claims

Kevin Spacey

 

Actor Kevin Spacey was due in court Monday to appear before a judge on the tony destination island of Nantucket, Massachusetts over accusations he sexually assaulted a teenager in 2016.

The “House of Cards” star had asked that his lawyers represent him at the hearing, but Judge Thomas Barrett declined, forcing Spacey to appear before him at 11:00 am (1600 GMT).

The formal charges come more than 13 months after the complaint was filed, and is part of the latest chapter in the #MeToo movement after the sentencing of actor Bill Cosby and the indictment against Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein.

The case marks the first time Spacey has faced charges, although there are dozens of claims against him.

The actor faces five years in prison if charged for repeatedly reaching down into the pants of a man identified as William Little, who was 18 at the time of the alleged assault in July 2016 at a Nantucket restaurant.

The young man had been working as a bus boy for the summer at the restaurant.

He had remained in the bar after his shift had finished to see Spacey, of whom he was a fan.

After meeting the actor and telling him he was 23 years old — the legal drinking age is 21 in Massachusetts — he said he started drinking first beer and then whiskey with Spacey at his urging.

Spacey then allegedly invited him back to his place, along with some other friends. The young man declined, suspecting the actor was trying to seduce him. But he stayed in the bar in the hopes of getting a picture with Spacey.

It was then Spacey began sexually molesting the young man, according to court filings.

The two-time Oscar winner — for his supporting role in “Usual Suspects” in 1996 and his lead role in “American Beauty” in 2000 — told the judge in a letter that he intends to plead not guilty.

 ‘Without evidence’ 

Spacey, who was forced out of public life by accusations of sexual misconduct in 2017, posted a video online in December of himself speaking about allegations of sexual abuse in the character of Frank Underwood, the scheming politician he played in “House of Cards” before the show dropped him.

The message has several levels of interpretation, evoking both the destiny of Underwood, the lead character written off the show, and the claims against Spacey.

“You wouldn’t believe the worst without evidence, would you? You wouldn’t rush to judgments without facts, would you? Did you? No, not you. You’re smarter than that,” Spacey said in the video.

“Of course, some believed everything and have been just waiting with baited breath to hear me confess it all. They’re just dying to have me declare that everything said is true and that I got what I deserved.

“Only you and I both know it’s never that simple, not in politics and not in life.”

Spacey was considered one of the finest actors of his generation, but his career nosedived following allegations of sexual misconduct by more than a dozen men in the United States and Britain.

In addition to the Nantucket case, two other investigations are underway in Los Angeles and London, where Spacey served as artistic director of the prestigious Old Vic theater from 2004 to 2015.

Mexican actor Roberto Cavazos, who performed in several Old Vic productions, said “it seems that it only took a male under 30 to make Mr Spacey feel free to touch us.”

The first public report of alleged abuse by him came from actor Anthony Rapp, who claimed that Spacey sexually abused him when Rapp was 14, in 1986.

Spacey has not appeared on the screen or on stage since Rapp came forward.

Director Ridley Scott even removed Spacey from his film “All the Money in the World” (2017) by shooting all scenes in which the actor appeared again with another star, Christopher Plummer.

AFP

Alleged Victim Of Spacey Sexual Assault Filmed Part Of Incident

This file photo taken on February 23, 2016 shows actor Kevin Spacey arriving for the season 4 premiere screening of the Netflix show “House of Cards” in Washington, DC. Nicholas Kamm / AFP

 

 

A young man who accused  Kevin Spacey of sexually assaulting him at a seaside restaurant near Boston in 2016 filmed part of the incident, according to court filings obtained by AFP.

The 59-year-old star of the “House of Cards” series, who has won two Oscars, is due to be formally charged on January 7 on the island of Nantucket with “indecent assault and battery on a person over 14 years of age.”

If found guilty, Spacey could face up to five years in jail.

The young man, identified as William Little and aged 18 at the time of the alleged assault in July 2016, told police he had sent messages, including a video, to his girlfriend via the Snapchat app from the “Club Car” restaurant in Nantucket, where he was working as a bus boy for the summer, according to the court filing.

He had remained in the bar after his shift had finished seeing Spacey, of whom he was a fan.

After meeting the actor and telling him he was 23 years old — the legal drinking age is 21 in Massachusetts — he started drinking first beer and then whiskey with Spacey.

Spacey then allegedly invited him back to his place, along with some other friends. The young man declined, suspecting the actor was trying to seduce him. But he stayed in the bar in the hopes of getting a picture with Spacey.

“Will only lingered around because he wanted a picture with Spacey, something for Instagram,” the filing said. “Spacey had told him, if you come back with me, I will take a picture with you.”

That was when Spacey began sexually molesting the young man, the filed charges said.

“Will tried to shift away with his body and move Spacey’s hands away with his hands but Spacey kept reaching down his pants,” it said.

“Will said his girlfriend did not believe him so that’s when he Snapchatted the video,” it said.

He then left the bar on the advice of a woman who reportedly saw “he was in distress.” He returned to work the next day and informed the owner of the bar of the incident, the court documents said.

The filing said that police had retrieved the footage and shown it to the young man, who confirmed it showed him and Spacey.

Spacey, who was forced out of public life by accusations of sexual misconduct in 2017, has not yet commented on the latest charges.

But this week he posted a video online of himself speaking about allegations of sexual abuse in the character of Frank Underwood, the scheming politician he played in House of Cards before the show dropped him.

Spacey’s lawyer did not respond immediately to an AFP request for comment.

Spacey was considered one of the finest actors of his generation but his career nosedived following allegations of sexual misconduct by more than a dozen men in the United States and Britain.

The first public report of alleged abuse by him came from actor Anthony Rapp, who claimed that Spacey sexually abused him when Rapp was 14, in 1986.

AFP

Actor Kevin Spacey To Be Charged With Sexual Assault

This file photo taken on February 23, 2016 shows actor Kevin Spacey arriving for the season 4 premiere screening of the Netflix show “House of Cards” in Washington, DC. Nicholas Kamm / AFP

 

Oscar-winning US actor Kevin Spacey is facing a felony charge for alleged sexual assault of a teenager in a bar in 2016, US media reported Monday.

The Cape and Islands, Massachusetts, the district attorney said Spacey was due to be arraigned at Nantucket District Court on January 7 on a charge of indecent assault and battery, according to the Boston Globe.

Clerk Magistrate Ryan Kearney issued a criminal complaint for the charge “against Kevin S. Fowler, also known as Kevin Spacey,” at a hearing on December 20, the newspaper reported, citing DA Michael O’Keefe.

AFP

Netflix Suspends Production Of ‘House of Cards’

This file photo taken on February 23, 2016 shows actor Kevin Spacey arriving for the season 4 premiere screening of the Netflix show “House of Cards” in Washington, DC. Nicholas Kamm / AFP

 

Production of award-winning “House of Cards” sixth season has been suspended indefinitely in the wake of sexual misconduct allegations against its star Kevin Spacey, Netflix announced Tuesday.

The suspension was “until further notice, to give us time to review the current situation and to address any concerns of our cast and crew,” said producer Media Rights Capital and the streaming giant in a joint statement.

Season six, which Netflix had already confirmed on Monday would be the final edition of its flagship production, had been scheduled to air in 2018. It is not yet known whether this will change.

The move came two days after actor Anthony Rapp alleged double Oscar winner Spacey made a “sexual advance” when he was a 14-year-old boy more than 30 years ago, speaking out in the wake of the Harvey Weinstein scandal.

Spacey, 58, came under a torrent of criticism over the claims and for appearing to deflect the story by finally confirming that he is gay — an open secret in Hollywood for years.

On Monday, Netflix and MRC said they were “deeply troubled” by the allegations against Spacey, who was not currently scheduled to be on set.

“In response to last night’s revelations, executives from both of our companies arrived in Baltimore this afternoon to meet with our cast and crew to ensure that they continue to feel safe and supported,” the statement said.

In London, The Old Vic theatre — where Spacey was artistic director from 2004-2015 — said Tuesday it was “deeply dismayed” by the allegations levied against Spacey and called on anyone connected to the institution who may have a complaint to get in touch.

“Inappropriate behaviour by anyone working at The Old Vic is completely unacceptable,” it said. “We aim to foster a safe and supportive environment without prejudice, harassment or bullying of any sort, at any level.”

– Spacey apology –

Rapp, 46, told Buzzfeed that in 1986, while both he and Spacey were performing on Broadway, Spacey invited the then 14-year-old to a party at his New York home. Spacey would have been 26 at the time.

Rapp said he was in Spacey’s bedroom watching TV when Spacey, apparently drunk, came in after all the other guests had left, and lay on top of him.

“He was trying to seduce me,” Rapp told Buzzfeed. “I don’t know if I would have used that language. But I was aware that he was trying to get with me sexually.”

Rapp said he squirmed free after a brief period of time and went into the bathroom, before leaving Spacey’s apartment and going home.

Spacey posted on his Twitter account that he was “beyond horrified” by Rapp’s revelation, which he claimed not to remember before apologising.

“I owe him the sincerest apology for what would have been deeply inappropriate drunken behaviour,” Spacey wrote.

He went on to say that Rapp’s accusation “encouraged me to address other things about my life,” and that “I know that there are stories out there about me.”

“I have loved and had romantic encounters with men throughout my life, and I choose now to live as a gay man. I want to deal with this honestly and openly and that starts with examining my own behaviour,” Spacey wrote.

Some reports have suggested that Spacey may face other accusers.

Rapp said he felt compelled to speak out after the recent accusations against disgraced Hollywood mogul Weinstein sparked an examination of abuses committed by powerful men in the entertainment industry.

AFP

Hollywood Star, Kevin Spacey Comes Out As Gay

Source: Nicholas Kamm / AFP. Kevin Spacey arriving for the season 4 premiere screening of the Netflix show “House of Cards” in Washington.

Kevin Spacey came out as gay early Monday and apologized to actor Anthony Rapp, who accused the Hollywood star of making a sexual advance on him at a 1986 party when he was only 14 years old.

Spacey’s announcement, posted on his Twitter account at midnight, came after Rapp — best known for being part of the original cast of the hit Broadway musical “Rent” — made the accusation in an interview with Buzzfeed News.

Spacey, 58, a double Oscar winner and star of the Netflix series “House of Cards,” said he did not remember the encounter but that “if I did behave then as he describes, I owe him the sincerest apology for what would have been deeply inappropriate drunken behavior.”

He went on say that Rapp’s accusation “encouraged me to address other things about my life.”

“As those closest to me know, in my life I have had relationships with both men and women. I have loved and had romantic encounters with men throughout my life, and I choose now to live as a gay man.

“I want to deal with this honestly and openly and that starts with examining my own behavior.”

Rapp, 46, told Buzzfeed that in 1986, while both he and Spacey were performing in Broadway shows, Spacey invited the then 14-year-old to a party at his New York apartment. Spacey would have been 26 at the time.

Rapp said he was in Spacey’s bedroom watching TV when Spacey appeared in the doorway at the end of the night, “kind of swaying” and apparently drunk.

Rapp said Spacey picked him up, put him on the bed and lay on top of the teenaged boy.

“He was trying to seduce me,” Rapp told Buzzfeed. “I don’t know if I would have used that language. But I was aware that he was trying to get with me sexually.”

Rapp said he squirmed away after a brief period of time and went into the bathroom. Shortly after, he left Spacey’s apartment and went home.

Rapp’s accusation came after more than 50 women accused movie mogul Harvey Weinstein of misconduct including rape, sexual abuse and harassment. His accusers include stars Gwyneth Paltrow, Angelina Jolie and Mira Sorvino.

The now-disgraced tycoon was sacked as co-chairman of The Weinstein Company and also resigned from its board.

The twice-married father of five has so far denied forcing himself on his accusers. He is being investigated by authorities in Los Angeles, New York and London.

AFP

Idris Elba Wins Big At SAG Awards

idris elbaBritish actor, Idris Elba, has won for his roles in a detective drama ‘Luther’ and for his supporting role as an African warlord in ‘Beasts of No Nation’ at the Screen Actors Guild (SAG) Awards.

The film, about the Boston Globe’s investigation of paedophile Catholic priests, won for best film cast.

But many of the main awards in Los Angeles were won by actors of diverse backgrounds, with industry magazine, Variety, noting that “diversity reigns”.

The awards came amid controversy over a lack of diversity among Oscar nominees.

The female prison series, ‘Orange Is The New Black’ won the ensemble award for a comedy series, and its star Uzo Aduba for best comedy actress in a television series.

The series has earned praise for its diverse cast and willingness to address race issues. Accepting the cast award, actress Laura Prepon referred to her cast mates, saying: “This is what we talk about when we talk about diversity.”

The three main acting awards were given to films with mainly white casts, Spotlight, The Revenant and Room, all of which are among the Oscar favourites.

Other main winners of the SAG Awards include:

Brie Larson (Room) – Best film actress
Leonardo DiCaprio (The Revenant) – Best film actor
Queen Latifah (Bessie) – Outstanding performance by an actress in a TV miniseries or movie
Kevin Spacey (House of Cards) – Best actor in a television drama series
Viola Davis (How to Get Away With Murder) – Best actress in a television drama series
Downton Abbey – Best television drama ensemble.