Cuba Gooding Jr. pleads not guilty to sex misconduct claims

Cuba Gooding Jr. pleads not guilty to sex misconduct claims
Cuba Gooding Jr., third from left, is escorted handcuffed as he arrives in court to face sexual misconduct charges, Tuesday Oct. 15, 2019, in New York. Gooding Jr. pleaded not guilty to an indictment alleging two instances of sexual misconduct. The new charge involves an alleged incident in October 2018. The defense paints it as a shakedown attempt. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)

NEW YORK (AP) — Cuba Gooding Jr. has pleaded not guilty to an indictment alleging two instances of sexual misconduct.

Gooding appeared Tuesday before a judge in New York City and was released on his own recognizance.

The new charge involves an alleged incident in October 2018. The defense paints it as a shakedown attempt.

The 51-year-old “Jerry Maguire” star was previously accused of groping a woman’s breast at a bar on June 9. The woman told police she believed Gooding was intoxicated.

The defense has said there are two witnesses who say it never happened and a bar video that backs up that claim.

Prosecutors are also seeking to bring in other accusers who’ve come forward to bolster their case.

Gooding’s attorney Mark Heller said outside court that he is “shocked, outraged and absolutely dumbfounded.”