Cuba Gooding Jr. pleads not guilty to third set of groping charges

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Nov. 1 (UPI) — Cuba Gooding Jr. pleaded not guilty to new sexual misconduct charges in New York on Thursday.

Gooding, 51, turned himself in to the Manhattan district attorney’s office after being charged with forcible touching and third-degree sexual abuse.

An indictment alleges that Gooding forcibly touched another person on Sept. 9, 2018, while at Lavo, a Manhattan Italian restaurant and nightclub.

Gooding’s lawyer, Mark Heller, criticized the allegation and two other identical indictments as a “distorted overreaction” to Gooding’s behavior.

“I am totally confident that this case will not result in any conviction to Cuba Gooding Jr.,” Heller said.

Gooding faces two other separate charges of forcible touching and third-degree sexual abuse in other incidents including one where he was accused of grabbing a woman’s breast at a New York bar in June and another in which he allegedly pinched the buttocks of a woman who served him at a nightclub in October 2018.

The Manhattan district attorney’s office is also seeking permission from a judge to admit a dozen other women with similar complaints dating back to 2001 as witnesses, although Gooding has not been charged in those instances.

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