Gooding pleads not guilty to pinching woman's buttocks

Oscar-winning actor Cuba Gooding Jr leaving his court arraignment in New York on Tuesday.
Oscar-winning actor Cuba Gooding Jr leaving his court arraignment in New York on Tuesday. PHOTO: AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

NEW YORK • Actor Cuba Gooding Jr pleaded not guilty on Tuesday to pinching a woman's buttocks in a nightclub last October, four months after he was charged with groping a woman in a separate incident.

Prosecutors said he pinched the woman at Manhattan's Tao nightclub after making a sexually suggestive remark to her earlier in the evening and denied it when she confronted him.

Gooding was accused in June of touching a woman's breasts at Magic Hour Rooftop Bar in Manhattan. Both alleged incidents are part of the same criminal case.

Gooding, 51, won a Best Supporting Actor Oscar in 1997 for the film Jerry Maguire.

Prosecutors said, at a hearing in Manhattan Supreme Court on Tuesday, they hope to establish a pattern of behaviour at Gooding's trial using testimony from 12 additional women, who have said they were subjected to unwanted touching and advances by the actor in bars and clubs.

No criminal charges have been brought in connection with those women.

Gooding had been scheduled to go to trial on the original charges today, but the additional charges mean the trial will be delayed. No new date has been set.

The actor, who is divorced, is one of dozens of men in politics, entertainment and sports who have been accused of sexual misconduct since allegations against movie producer Harvey Weinstein triggered the #MeToo movement.

REUTERS

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 17, 2019, with the headline 'Gooding pleads not guilty to pinching woman's buttocks'. Print Edition | Subscribe