Followers of the idol singer Taylor Swift were pretty much caught off guard by the nature of her return to public attention after some time out of the limelight. After all, she is showing up for a trial wherein she is both defendant and counter-claimant. She is charged in 2015 with the defamation of a Denver-area radio DJ who was fired from his job after she accused him of groping her during a 2013 meet-and-greet. In turn, Taylor has fired back by suing her plaintiff for assault on the date in question. The trial for both the country-pop singer-songwriter and radio personality David Mueller started in earnest on Tuesday, August 8, with Swift being set for cross-examination the following day.

Conflicting stories

The center of this curious case is David Mueller, radio professional who has worked in stations across Columbus OH, Kansas City and San Diego before becoming one-time DJ for country music station KYGO in Denver, Colorado. On June 2013 when Taylor Swift had a show at the Pepsi Center, Mueller had been invited to a meet-and-greet, where he apparently touched her inappropriately. From the singer’s testimony, Mueller’s home station KYGO had him sacked. He then sued Taylor for defamation while she filed a counter-claim of physical assault.

When the trial started at the Alfred A. Arraj Courthouse in downtown Denver, both Swift and Mueller were present, the former being dressed in a sweater, plaid dress, and her hair tied up in a bob and the latter, in a nondescript black suit and tie.

Their respective attorneys opened their cases with different accounts at the 2013 Pepsi Center incidents. Mueller’s lawyer Gabriel McFarland described the physical contact between the two as being more like “jostling,” with the then DJ's elbow grazing the idol’s ribcage. Taylor’s counsel Douglas Baldridge maintains her notion that he had touched her posterior, which is tantamount to assault.

Crime of annoyance

David Mueller went to the stand in the trial stating his intention to clear his name, but when Douglas Baldridge put him to a cross examination, an alternative viewpoint was raised. Taylor Swift’s attorney notes that on the meet-and-greet, the former KYGO DJ was not included in the VIP line but had to wait with his girlfriend on the fans line.

He allegedly also got annoyed after the singer paid more attention to his girlfriend than him, and that it was this ill-feeling which spurred him to grope Swift. Mueller meanwhile was aggravated by the intense grilling and called out Baldridge for interrupting him while he was giving testimony. That was pretty much all that could be fit on an opening day. Taylor Swift will then testify and submit to cross-examination later on in the trial.