Cuba Gooding Jr. Indicted for ‘Additional Incident’ in Groping Case: Prosecutors

Pilar Melendez
JOHANNES EISELE/AFP via Getty Images

Cuba Gooding Jr.’s trial for allegedly groping a woman at a Times Square club in June was unexpectedly adjourned on Thursday after Manhattan prosecutors revealed the Oscar-winning actor has been indicted on new charges related to “an additional incident.” 

Gooding already faces charges of third-degree misdemeanor sexual abuse and forcible touching charges for allegedly groping a woman’s breasts without her consent. The nature of the new charges remains unclear.

The 51-year-old actor, who faces a maximum penalty of one year in jail if convicted, has vehemently denied the sexual-misconduct allegations.

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Dressed in a navy pinstripe suit with a white pocket square, the Jerry Maguire star remained quiet during his brief court appearance as Manhattan prosecutors revealed to Judge Marisol Martinez Alonso that new charges were filed Tuesday night in connection to “another incident” that is “outside the Manhattan Criminal Court’s jurisdiction.” The revelation garnered murmurs throughout the courtroom. 

The actor has been “indicted on charges included in this docket as well as an additional incident previously uncharged,” Assistant District Attorney Jenna Long said Thursday.

Both Gooding’s lawyers and prosecutors agreed to an arraignment on the new charges in Manhattan Supreme Court next Tuesday. The indictment will not be unsealed until then, prosecutors said.

Gooding’s trial was already postponed in September after prosecutors said they were still waiting for evidence in the star’s case. On Thursday, the actor and his lawyers quickly left the courthouse without remarking on the new allegations.

Prosecutors previously alleged a 29-year-old woman, who has not been identified, told authorities she was at Magic Hour Rooftop Bar & Lounge in Times Square on June 9 with friends when she noticed the actor. The woman told authorities Gooding was “heavily intoxicated,” so she offered him a cup of water.

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While the two were in the midst of a conversation, the woman alleges Gooding groped her breasts, at which point they got into an “argument.” The woman told police she left the bar and immediately called 911.

Although Gooding was no longer on the scene when authorities arrived, police were able to confirm his presence at Magic Hour with bar staff and video surveillance footage. Shortly after the actor was arrested, TMZ published surveillance footage allegedly showing the incident.

At the time of Gooding’s arrest, police said they were investigating a second allegation from a woman who said she was groped by the actor over a decade ago. Authorities said the woman, who has not been identified, initially came forward after seeing news reports about the June incident. 

The second woman reportedly accused the The People v. O.J. Simpson star of grabbing her butt in 2008 at Butter Restaurant in Manhattan, the New York Daily News reported. New York, however, has a five-year statute of limitations on these types of sexual assaults, so it was not immediately clear whether the actor is being charged for these allegations.

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Gooding’s defense attorney, Mark J. Heller, has previously denied the allegations to The Daily Beast, saying the “almost two hours of tape” reviewed by his team and authorities prove there is no criminal behavior. 

“We have reviewed the tapes, and we do not see any criminal conduct having been perpetrated on his part,” Heller said. “He respects women. I’ve known him for over 30 years, this is not something he would do.”

Heller did not immediately respond to The Daily Beast’s requests for comment on the latest allegations Thursday.

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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