Kevin Spacey sexual assault charge is dropped

Ben Arnold
NANTUCKET, MA. - JANUARY 7: Actor Kevin Spacey leaves Nantucket District Court after his arraignment on January 7, 2019 in Nantucket, Massachusetts. (Staff Photo By Nancy Lane/MediaNews Group/Boston Herald)

The sexual assault charge facing actor Kevin Spacey has been dropped by prosecutors in Nantucket.

Spacey had been accused of groping an 18-year-old employee of the Club Car restaurant on the island in the summer of 2016.

He was then charged with indecent sexual assault and was set to stand trial in the autumn, but the case has now collapsed due to the 'unavailability' of the complainant.

It was alleged that Spacey had plied the young man - the son of former Boston area news anchor Heather Unruh - with alcohol after he had finished a shift at the restaurant and then groped him.

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He said that though he tried to move Spacey's hands away, the House of Cards actor persisted, and also that he didn't know what to do in the situation as he feared he would be in trouble for drinking underage.

When Spacey went to the bathroom, the man said that he then fled the scene.

However, during a hearing last week, Spacey's accuser invoked his fifth amendment rights against self-incrimination over text messages that the defence claimed had been deleted from his phone.

The phone, which was given to prosecutors in 2017, was key to the prosecution's case, but according to CBS, Unruh told the case investigators that she had deleted other messages relating to her son's 'frat boy activities' before handing it over.

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She said that the authorities never returned the phone.

“The complaining witness was informed that if he chose to continue to invoke his Fifth Amendment right, the case would not be able to go forward,” Cape & Islands District Attorney Michael O’Keefe said.

The accuser's lawyer Mitchell Garabedian told the press: “My client and his family have shown an enormous amount of courage under difficult circumstances. I have no further comment at this time.”

Spacey has been accused of dozens of other instances of inappropriate behaviour and sexual misconduct, dating back decades.

After a claim from Star Trek: Discovery actor Anthony Rapp that Spacey molested him at a party when he was 14, many others came forward.