Cuba Gooding Jr.’s lawyers won’t be able to use an accuser’s alleged breast size insecurity against her in his New York City groping case, a judge decided Thursday. The bizarre development unfolded during a Manhattan court proceeding where Gooding’s legal team and prosecutors met to discuss issues such as what they could ask witnesses at trial. Gooding faces six misdemeanor counts for alleged sexual misconduct against three women. It is unclear when his trial will take place.
Prosecutors, pointing to one of Gooding attorney’s past claims that an accuser had expressed insecurity online about having small breasts, asked Judge Curtis Farber to bar this line of questioning.
“Do you intend to ask the witness what she feels about the size of her breasts?” Farber asked one of Gooding’s lawyers, Peter Toumbekis.
“I do,” Toumbekis said.
“That is simply offensive,” assistant district attorney Jenna Long said of this type of questioning.
“Tell me the connection between the size of her breasts and the relevance at trial,” Farber asked shortly thereafter.
“It’s one plus two equals three,” Toumbekis replied.
“Spell it out,” the judge pressed.
“She actually talks about the fact that she’s self-conscious about her breast size,” Toumbekis said at one point, referring to a purported blog.
Toumbekis said he thought it was “fair” to ask her questions that would probe whether she “sometimes misconstrues what other people are saying to her because of her own self-esteem issues.”
Farber asked Toumbekis whether he was suggesting if this insecurity impacted the accuser’s “perception” of events.
“Yes, judge,” Toumbekis said.
Farber said he wouldn’t allow them to pursue this line of questioning. If Gooding’s legal team came up with more arguments later on why this questioning should be allowed, Farber said they could ask him to consider it again.
Gooding, who sported a black cloth mask and deep-blue suit at the courthouse, did not answer a question about whether he thought women with small breasts were delusional as he left the courtroom. As he was asked this question, Gooding shook his head and paused in front of reporters as he walked down the hallway. He pulled his mask to the side, revealing that the interior said “Black Lives Matter.” He then said, “Black lives matter,” and gave a thumbs-up before walking off.
Long also revealed in court that eight more women have come forward with allegations against the actor — meaning 30 women have accused him of misconduct. Prosecutors said in December that 22 women had accused him of wrongdoing, ranging from nonconsensual kissing to very aggressive touching. Gooding maintains his innocence.
More From This Series
- Cuba Gooding Jr. Accused of Rape in New Lawsuit
- Cuba Gooding Jr. Groping Case: Seven More Women Accuse Him of Misconduct
- Cuba Gooding Jr. Charged With Third Groping Accusation