U.S. actor Kevin Spacey, who starred in the popular television series “House of Cards” and the film “The Usual Suspects,” has been cleared of all sexual assault charges brought by men during his time as Artistic Director of The Old Vic Theatre.
They put forth a number of allegations against the actor, but he has been cleared.
The Oscar-winning actor Kevin Spacey was cleared following a four-week trial in London on cases of sexual assault on Wednesday July 26.
The Hollywood star, 64, had tears in his eyes as the jury at Southwark Crown Court found him not liable of seven counts of sexual assault and two counts of other serious sexual offenses.
The charges covered a period somewhere in the range of 2004 and 2013, when Spacey filled in as creative director at the Old Vic theater in the English capital. He denied each and every one of the charges.
After three days of deliberation, 12 hours and 26 minutes, Spacey thanked the jury for acquitting him. Coincidentally, his 64th birthday was also on Wednesday, July 26.
Spacey said he was “humbled” in a brief statement to reporters outside the court shortly after the verdict.
“I imagine that many of you can understand that there’s a lot for me to process after what has just happened today. But I would like to say that I’m enormously grateful to the jury for having taken the time to examine all of the evidence and all of the facts carefully, before they reached their decision. And I am humbled by the outcome today,” he said.
The actor completed his proclamation by saying thanks to the court staff and his legal team.
Spacey has won two Academy Awards for his roles in “The Usual Suspects” and “American Beauty.” He has returned to acting in recent years after leaving “House of Cards.” The actor starred in the Netflix series for five seasons before being fired in 2017 over allegations of misconduct on and off the set.
According to the PA Media news agency, prosecutor Christine Agnew told jurors during the trial that Spacey was “a sexual bully” and a man who “delights in making others feel powerless and uncomfortable.” The actor said the charges were “madness” and a “stab at the back.”
One complainant said that Spacey grabbed the man’s hand and put it on his crotch while he was driving in the front seat of a car next to him. The complainant said that one time, Spacey acted so strongly it “blew his mind.” Spacey denied this always occurred.
The second complainant said that Spacey touched his leg and grabbed his crotch with “such force which was painful” at a charity event. But Spacey said this won’t ever occur.
The third said he met Spacey while working at a bar in the English countryside. Sometime thereafter, at a party at the actor’s vacation home, he said Spacey “moved toward him and gave him an embrace,” kissed his neck, got his groin and “crushed,” while telling the man to “be cool, be cool.” The complainant said he pushed Spacey away and left rapidly, calling his father to get him.
Spacey guaranteed that this was a “clumsy pass,” but denied physically attacking him.
The fourth complainant, an aspiring actor, made the most serious accusation, claiming that he contacted Spacey and asked for career advice after a brief encounter at a theater production.
The man claimed that two weeks later, Spacey invited him to his London apartment and sexually assaulted him there. The complainant claimed that the actor had drugged him and that he awoke to find Spacey having sex with him.
Spacey let the court know that the two had shared “a consensual, an extremely overall quite exquisite night.”
According to PA Media, when Spacey’s lawyer, Patrick Gibbs KC, questioned the complainants, they all denied giving the jury false accounts, attempting to promote their careers, or seeking financial gain.
Last year, a New York jury found Spacey not liable for battery on allegations he picked up actor Anthony Rapp and laid on top of him after a party in 1986.