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Gooding Back in Court on Groping Charges

Actor pleads not guilty to expanded indictment
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Oct 31, 2019 6:45 PM CDT
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Cuba Gooding Jr. appears in court in New York on Thursday. He pleaded not guilty to an updated indictment.   (Alec Tabak/New York Daily News via AP, Pool)
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(Newser) – In what's become a familiar scene, actor Cuba Gooding Jr. appeared in court Thursday to face more charges in his New York City sexual misconduct case, accused for the third time of groping or touching a woman at a Manhattan nightspot. Gooding, who was in court just two weeks ago after a second accuser came forward, pleaded not guilty to an updated indictment that covers all three alleged incidents. His lawyers argued the newest charges should be thrown out because the paperwork doesn't specify what he's accused of doing, the AP reports. They also said they were dismayed that Gooding, 51, was never invited to testify before the grand jury and that prosecutors failed to show videos of the encounters, which they contend prove his innocence.

"We believe without question that the case is purely a case of malicious prosecution," Gooding's lawyer, Mark Heller, said after the arraignment. But it's not just the criminal allegations Gooding has to worry about. Prosecutors said they've heard from more women, in addition to a dozen who've already come forward, who could testify that the Oscar-winning star of Jerry Maguire was also inappropriate with them over the years. His total number of accusers now numbers 15, per Variety. The updated indictment and accompanying paperwork state that Gooding is charged with forcibly touching a woman's sexual or intimate parts at a New York nightclub around midnight in September 2018.

(Read more Cuba Gooding Jr. stories.)

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