Cuba Gooding Jr investigated by NY cops for allegedly groping woman in bar
Two spokesmen for the NYPD, Det. Hubert Reyes and Det. Martin Brown, confirmed Monday the Special Victims squad is investigating an allegation of "forcible touching" but would not confirm the allegation involves Gooding.
The Post's Page Six reported that a 30-year-old woman told police that a "highly intoxicated" Gooding, 51, grabbed her breast while they were drinking around 9 p.m. Sunday at the Magic Hour Rooftop Bar and Lounge on top of a Marriott-owned Moxy Hotel in midtown.
The Post reported the accuser objected and got into an argument with Gooding that had to be broken up by security. Gooding was seen on video leaving the club soon after and the woman called 911 hours later around 1 a.m. Monday.
The Post, E! Online and TMZ all cited anonymous law enforcement sources for their reports.
An Instagram post by Matt Assante showed Gooding, wearing a dark vest and a white shirt with a hole in the arm pit, holding a microphone and singing with others.
Gooding, who won an Oscar for best supporting actor for 1996's "Jerry Maguire," is now being sought for questioning, according to the reports.
“There’s an allegation that we are currently investigating, but we don’t have any further details in regards to that investigation to share at this time,” Det. Brown told USA TODAY.
Another NYPD spokesperson, Sgt. Mary Frances O’Donnell, urged accusers and witnesses to come forward, without commenting specifically on the Gooding accusation.
"The NYPD takes sexual assault extremely seriously, and urges anyone who has been a victim to file a police report so we can perform a comprehensive investigation, and offer support and services to survivors," she said in a statement to USA TODAY.
A representative for Gooding did not immediately return a message seeking comment from USA TODAY.
The Magic Hour club did not immediately return a message from USA TODAY.
Prior to the current era of widespread #MeToo wariness, which gained force in the fall of 2017, Gooding was criticized for his hard-partying and his behavior towards women.
In March 2017, he was slammed on social media when he lifted up the dress of Golden Globe winner Sarah Paulson when he appeared on stage at Los Angeles PaleyFest with his co-stars of "American Horror Story."
"Cuba Gooding Jr. has just embarrassed himself at #AHS Paleyfest. This is junior high behavior. Leave the women alone," tweeted Margaret Holt, an editor at the Chicago Tribune.
In 2016, in the wake of his success playing O.J. Simpson on FX's “The People v. O.J. Simpson,” Page Six reported that Gooding was seen drinking and dancing shirtless at Miami nightclubs, spraying clubgoers with a CO2 cannon, handing women his room key, and talking about how he was separated from Sara Kapfer, his wife of two decades.
Gooding filed for divorce in January 2017. In recent months, Page Six has claimed Gooding has been spotted around town with Claudine De Niro, the estranged wife of Robert De Niro’s son Raphael.
Academy award-winning actor Cuba Gooding Jr. is starring in the London revival of musical "Chicago" taking on the role of lawyer Billy Flynn. ROUGH CUT (no reporter narration). Video provided by Reuters