Taylor Swift’s ‘Extremely Personal’ Photo in Butt-Grope Lawsuit Placed Under Seal

Judge grants “Shake it Off” singer’s motion to keep picture out of the public eye

Taylor Swift has already won her legal battle against former DJ David Mueller — at least with regard to one particularly personal aspect of the lawsuit.

Swift, who’s being sued by Mueller over an alleged butt-groping incident, was granted a motion sealing a photo described as “extremely personal and sensitive” in the motion.

The “Shake it Off” singer was sued by Mueller in September 2015. Mueller says he was fired after being accused of “grabbing Ms. Swift’s bottom” at a meet-and-greet at Denver’s Pepsi Center in June 2013. The radio personality, who goes by the professional name “Jackson,” has adamantly denied the accusation. Swift subsequently filed a countersuit against Mueller.

Last week in a joint motion, Swift and the other parties in the suit sought to keep certain “confidential and private evidence” out of the public eye.

The joint motion in particular mentions a “photograph taken on June 2, 2013, and documents describing it.”

“Exhibit 14 is extremely personal and sensitive in nature and should not be shared with the public until absolutely necessary (at trial),” the motion read.

The motion contended that, given the intense public interest in the case, dissemination of the evidence to the public would likely taint the potential juror pool in the case.

However, the motion added, the photo in question would likely be shared for “scandalous and prurient interests.”

“In addition to the likelihood of these documents swaying a jury, it is all but assured that the photograph will be shared for scandalous and prurient interests — reasons that have nothing to do with the public’s interest in the Court’s decision making,” the motion read. “Ms. Swift’s privacy outweighs the public’s interest in accessing Exhibit 14 and any documents describing it.”

Swift’s countersuit, filed in October 2015, makes mention of a photo documenting the alleged incident.

“Defendants admit that Mr. Bell showed Mr. Haskell a photograph of Mueller with his hand in an inappropriate place and a grin on his face,” the papers said, referring to Frank Bell, Director of Radio & Research at 13 Management, who is named as a co-defendant in the filing.

In his order Friday, U.S. district judge William J. Martinez granted the sealing of the photo based on its potential to “significantly complicate jury selection,” but denied the sealing of the other evidence.

“Accordingly, the Court finds and concludes that the parties have failed to demonstrate that the public’s interest in maintaining Court documents and proceedings is outweighed, let alone ‘heavily outweighed,’ by their narrow private interests as set forth in the Joint Motion,” Martinez said.

Pamela Chelin contributed to this report.