Kevin Spacey Silent In Face Of Nantucket Sexual Assault Charge
Posted On April 29, 2020
NANTUCKET, MA – Two-time Oscar winner Kevin Spacey stood silent as he was arraigned in Nantucket District Court on a charge of indecent assault and battery Monday morning. The 59-year-old actor is accused of groping an 18-year-old man at a Nantucket restaurant in 2016.
Spacey’s lawyers entered a not guilty plea on his behalf.
The entire hearing lasted less than 10 minutes. A judge granted a motion to preserve cell phone and cloud information on the accuser’s phone from July 7-8, 2016, the night of the alleged assault. Spacey Attorney Alan Jackson said there is data that is “likely exculpatory” for the actor.
Jackson has sought to poke holes in the case, noting that the teenager didn’t immediately report the allegations. If convicted, Spacey faces as many as five years in prison.
Prosecutors did not ask for bail, but requested that Spacey stay away from the alleged victim and witnesses.
A preliminary hearing was set for March 4. Spacey’s appearance has been waived, though he will be required to be available by phone.
The allegations were first brought in November 2017, when former Boston TV anchor Heather Unruh told reporters the actor got her son drunk and grabbed his genitals during an encounter in the crowded bar of the Club Car restaurant in 2016. She said her son fled the restaurant, where he worked as a busboy, when Spacey went to the bathroom.
According to court records, the man caught part of his encounter with Spacey on video. He sent a video via Snapchat to his girlfriend that allegedly showed Spacey touching the front of his pants, according to a state police report filed in Nantucket District Court and obtained by the Cape Cod Times.
Spacey’s lawyers said at a show-cause hearing in December the video shows someone’s hand touching another person’s shirt, but does not show anyone being groped, according to the Boston Globe, which obtained an audio recording of the hearing.
Neither Spacey nor his lawyers have addressed the allegation publicly, but the actor released a video last month in the voice of Frank Underwood, his character on Netflix’s “House of Cards,” in which he said, “I’m certainly not going to pay the price for the thing I didn’t do.”
The civil attorney for the accuser said in a statement ahead of the hearing that his client is “leading by example.”
“By reporting the sexual assault, my client is a determined and encouraging voice for those victims not yet ready to report being sexually assaulted,” Mitchell Garabedian, who has represented hundreds of clergy sexual abuse victims, said in a statement. The attorney is not part of the criminal case against Spacey.
Media trucks lined the street before dawn, and locals on the island, which teems with tourists in the summer but quiets down in the winter, drove by slowly to take photos of reporters standing in line in the cold.
More than two dozen journalists packed the courtroom hours before Spacey was scheduled to appear.
A judge denied Spacey’s request to avoid appearing at the arraignment. Attorneys for the actor had argued his presence would “amplify the negative publicity already generated” by the case.
Unruh’s son is not the only man to accuse Spacey of sexual misconduct. In late 2017, actor Anthony Rapp publicly accused Spacey of assaulting him when he was 14 years old, prompting several others in the entertainment industry to come forward.
Materials from the Associated Press were used in this story.
Actor Kevin Spacey arrives at district court on Monday, Jan. 7, 2019, in Nantucket, Mass., to be arraigned on a charge of indecent assault and battery. The Oscar-winning actor is accused of groping the teenage son of a former Boston TV anchor in 2016 in the crowded bar at the Club Car in Nantucket. (AP Photo/Steven Senne)