"I’m so happy to see you and to have you and to know you through the ups and the downs of my life"
Taylor Swift has praised her fans after they supported her during her sexual assault lawsuit against DJ David Mueller.
The singer launched a lawsuit against Mueller in August 2017, alleging that she had been groped by him during a meet-and-greet event five years ago.
Swift accused Mueller of touching her inappropriately at a concert in 2013 – claiming that he reached up her skirt and grabbed her buttock in public. Though he denied the allegation, the presenter lost his job as a result. Mueller then sued the singer, before she countersued. In August last year, Mueller was found guilty of assault and battery.
As she appeared at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida, on Tuesday, Swift marked the one year anniversary of her victory by praising fans.
“Looking back, this exact day a year ago, I was not playing a sold-out stadium in Tampa, I was in a courtroom in Denver, Colorado”, she explained.
“I was there for a sexual assault case and this day a year ago was the day the jury sided in my favour and said that they believed me.”
The ‘Reputation’ singer then went on to praise people who struggle to get their allegations properly heard.
“I just think about all the people that weren’t believed, or the people who haven’t been believed, or the people who are afraid to speak up because they don’t think they will be believed”, she explained.
Praising her fans, who held up $1 bills to mark her settlement, she added: “You guys have seen me going through so many ups and downs in my life, just due to the public nature of the way my life is.
“I just want to say I’m so happy to see you and to have you and to know you through the ups and the downs of my life. So, thank you for everything. Sorry, I just haven’t really talked about it and I’m just really not composed at all.”
Last year, Swift made headlines when she offered her support to fellow victims of abuse.
“I would tell people who find themselves in this situation that there is a great deal of blame placed on the victims in cases of sexual harassment and assault. You could be blamed for the fact that it happened, for reporting it and blamed for how you reacted. You might be made to feel like you’re overreacting, because society has made this stuff seem so casual.”
As well as hitting out against the culture of victim blaming, and said that it’s never too late to speak out if you’ve been abused.
“My advice is that you not blame yourself and do not accept the blame others will try to place on you,” she added. “You should not be blamed for waiting 15 minutes or 15 days or 15 years to report sexual assault or harassment, or for the outcome of what happens to a person after he or she makes the choice to sexually harass or assault you.”