A New York court has dismissed a sexual assault lawsuit against Hollywood actor Kevin Spacey. The case was brought by Anthony Rapp, who claimed Mr Spacey had inappropriately touched him at a party in 1986 when he was 14.
Mr Rapp, now 50, had initiated the lawsuit in September 2020 and sought around $40m (£36m) in damages.
On Thursday, the jury found that Mr Spacey did not sexually abuse Mr Rapp while both were actors in Broadway plays in 1986.
Mr Rapp was 14 years old and Mr Spacey was 26. Both actors met while appearing in Broadway productions; Mr Rapp in “Precious Sons” with Ed Harris and Mr Spacey in a Jack Lemmon-led revival of “Long Days Journey Into Night.”
Judge Lewis Kaplan formally dismissed Mr Rapp’s claim of assault before the trial started and his claim of intentional infliction of emotional distress after Mr Rapp’s attorneys rested his case. The jury then decided only on the battery claim.
Mr Spacey had been charged with four counts of sexual assault against three men and one count of causing a person to engage in penetrative sexual activity without consent by Britain’s Crown Prosecuting Service in May. He pleaded not guilty to the charges.
Mr Spacey has been ordered to pay MRC, the producer of “House of Cards,” $31 million in damages after the political thriller had its episode-order cut in the light of the abuse allegations against the star.
In the United Kingdom, Mr Spacey faces charges of sexually assaulting three men between March 2005 and August 2008 when he was living in London as the artistic director of the Old Vic theatre. He has pleaded not guilty.