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Cuba Gooding Jr. didn't grope anyone — he's just 'frisky,' his lawyer says

Nardine Saad, Los Angeles Times on

Published in Entertainment News

Oscar winner Cuba Gooding Jr. surrendered to New York authorities on Thursday following allegations that he groped a woman at a Manhattan nightclub over the weekend, according to the New York Police Department.

The actor was charged with one count of forcible touching, a misdemeanor offense, said Detective Sophia Mason, a spokeswoman for the NYPD.

Gooding turned himself over Thursday afternoon to the NYPD Special Victims Unit, where he was processed. He was fingerprinted, had a mug shot taken and was led out of the precinct in handcuffs, The Associated Press reported. He is expected to be arraigned later in the day.

Earlier this week a 29-year-old woman told police that the actor grabbed her breast while he was intoxicated around 11:15 p.m. on Sunday at the Magic Hour Rooftop Bar & Lounge, according to AP.

Gooding and his defense attorney, Mark J. Heller, have denied the allegation.

"We have reviewed almost two hours of tapes, and we do not see any criminal conduct having been perpetrated on his part," Heller said in a phone interview with the Los Angeles Times.

 

His surrender on Thursday came just hours after local tabloids reported that a second woman came forward with a separate groping allegation against the actor in 2008.

The allegations are the latest controversy for Gooding, who has long been dogged by accusations of hard partying and questionable behavior. In 2012, "The People v. O.J. Simpson" star was accused of shoving a female bartender in a New Orleans bar, but the woman later decided not to press charges.

Heller did not believe that the 2008 allegation exhibited a pattern of misbehavior, but did describe his client as "frisky."

"He's very, very outgoing. He's very friendly. He's very jovial. I guess the word is, sometimes he's frisky but he's not inappropriate," Heller said on Thursday shortly before his client had surrendered. "He respects women. I've known him for over 30 years, never been charged or convicted of any crimes... I don't think it's going to create any pattern or affect his case."

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