September 30, 2023

LONDON (AP) — Kevin Spacey took a dramatic pause in his testimony Thursday and appeared to virtually choke up as he recalled the “intimate” and “considerably sexual” friendship he shared with a person now accusing the actor of violently groping him. He stated he was “crushed” when he realized of the allegations.

“I by no means thought that (the person) I knew would … 20 years later stab me within the again,” Spacey testified in his personal protection in his sexual assault trial in what may very well be essentially the most consequential talking a part of his life.

Spacey spoke in a peaceful voice and earnest demeanor — humorous, humble and self-deprecating at occasions — as he breezed over his profession after which fast-forwarded to the early 2000s when he was in London working on the Previous Vic Theatre.

4 males have accused the two-time Oscar winner of sexually assaulting them between 2001 and 2013, describing disturbing encounters that escalated from undesirable touching to aggressive crotch grabbing. One man who referred to as Spacey a “vile sexual predator” stated he handed out or fell asleep on the actor’s London flat and woke as much as discover the actor performing oral intercourse on him.

Prosecutor Christine Agnew has referred to as Spacey a “sexual bully” who “delights in making others really feel powerless and uncomfortable.”

Spacey, 63, has pleaded not responsible to 12 fees that embody sexual and indecent assault counts and one depend of inflicting an individual to interact in penetrative sexual exercise with out consent.

One in all his accusers stated Spacey on a number of events through the years had touched his inside thigh, buttocks and crotch in unwelcome ways in which made him uncomfortable.

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The fondling culminated when the person was as soon as driving Spacey and the actor grabbed his crotch so violently he virtually ran off the highway, the person had testified.

The alleged sufferer advised police he warned Spacey to by no means do it once more and threatened to knock him out.

“That by no means occurred,” Spacey testified. “I used to be not on a suicide mission in any of these years.”

He described the connection a lot otherwise, showing wistful as he checked out a photograph the person despatched him from a mountainous trek he took to lift cash for charity.

Spacey stated the person was humorous and charming and recalled their flirtatious time collectively, saying he most likely took the lead in making bodily contact: “I’m a giant flirt.”

Slowly, the 2 males started touching one another, Spacey stated, nevertheless it by no means went a lot additional, as a result of the person made it clear he didn’t need that.

“He stated issues like, ‘That is new for me,’ so I feel he might have been stunned by his response,” Spacey stated. “The one factor he made clear was he didn’t need to go additional than we have been going and I revered that.”

Spacey’s description of light stroking was in direct contradiction to what the alleged victims testified about. They stated he caught them abruptly when he aggressively grabbed their privates by means of their clothes.

“It wasn’t like a caress,” one man testified. “It was like a cobra popping out and getting maintain.”

Spacey referred to as that man’s account “insanity” and stated it by no means occurred. He additionally denied he made racially offensive remarks to the person throughout a rehearsal for a charity theater occasion.

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Spacey poked a gap within the driver’s story by calling the timing of the account into query. The person testified he was grabbed whereas driving Spacey in 2004 or 2005 to an annual gala that Elton John holds.

Spacey offered work schedules and itineraries that confirmed he was filming far-off — as soon as in Australia — these years. He stated he solely attended the occasion in 2001.

The person stated he might have had the dates fallacious, however that he remembered the groping incident being the final straw. He stated he stopped spending time round him after that incident.

Spacey testified that the person nonetheless has images of the 2 of them collectively posted on social media.

Spacey started his testimony revisiting his begin in theater and transition to the large display screen, profession, joking that his mom would say that he started performing the second he emerged from the womb.

The American actor was one of many greatest stars of the silver and small screens when sexual misconduct accusations introduced his profession to a halt. If convicted, he might face a jail time period that may doom his hopes of a comeback.

Spacey advised German journal Zeit in an article revealed final month: “There are individuals proper now who’re prepared to rent me the second I’m cleared of those fees in London.”

Spacey, who owns properties in London and the U.S., is free on unconditional bail.