Cuba Gooding Jr. pleads not guilty to sexual misconduct allegations by two women

A dozen additional women also accused the actor of either inappropriately touching them or kissing them, according to court documents released Tuesday. He was not charged in those cases.

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By Minyvonne Burke

Cuba Gooding Jr. pleaded not guilty in Manhattan on Tuesday to an indictment charging him with four counts of sexual misconduct brought by two women who alleged he groped them.

A dozen additional women also accused the actor of either inappropriately touching them or kissing them, according to court documents released Tuesday.

Gooding was charged with two counts of forcible touching and two counts of third-degree sexual abuse and released on his own recognizance.

In one of the instances included in the indictment, the 51-year-old Oscar winner is accused of placing his hand on a woman's breast and squeezing it without her consent while at the Magic Hour Rooftop Bar and Lounge near Times Square on June 9.

The other charge alleges that Gooding made a "sexually suggestive remark" to a woman at TAO nightclub in October 2018 and then later that night pinched her buttocks without her consent, according to court documents.

When the woman confronted Gooding, he said he had pinched her back, not her buttocks. He then raised his voice and stated that he would never return to the club again, the document states.

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Gooding's attorney, Mark Jay Heller, said in a statement to reporters prior to Gooding's hearing that he is "confident" his client won't be criminally convicted.

"Cuba Gooding Jr. is certainly innocent of the allegations that will be presented today before the court," Heller said. "We are confident there will be no evidence that will support the indictment."

Heller once again denied the allegations in a brief news conference following Gooding's court appearance, saying his client engaged in "no criminal conduct."

"We are shocked, outraged and absolutely dumbfounded that the district attorney's office wasted the taxpayer's money, resources and time in charging Cuba with these two incredulous cases," he said.

In addition to the charges against him, Gooding is accused in court documents of groping or touching 12 women in incidents that happened between 2001 and 2018 in various cities including Los Angeles, New York City and Las Vegas.

In an incident in 2001, Gooding allegedly "rubbed his groin and pelvis" against a woman's backside while simultaneously grabbing her buttocks and breast with his hand, the document states. In a 2007 incident, the actor allegedly kissed a woman without her consent.

Gooding has not been charged in any of those 12 incidents.

Prosecutor Jenna Long said those accusers could testify at the actor's sexual misconduct trial, according to NBC New York.

The "Jerry Maguire" star previously turned himself in to police in June and was charged with third-degree misdemeanor sexual abuse and forcible touching for the June incident. He pleaded not guilty and was released on his own recognizance.

Gooding is due back in court Dec. 13.

Associated Press contributed.