Cuba Gooding Jr., an actor, pleaded guilty Wednesday to forcibly groping a woman at a New York nightclub in 2018.
The guilty plea came almost three years after the Oscar-winning “Jerry Maguire” star was detained in the case, which saw multiple delays as his attorneys attempted to lower or remove the charges.
Gooding, 54, who was accused of sexually assaulting three separate women at several Manhattan nightclubs in 2018 and 2019, pled guilty to only one of the charges.
He told the judge that he “kissed the waitress on the lips” without her consent at the LAVO nightclub in New York.
Gooding’s plea agreement stipulates that he will serve no prison time. He can withdraw the misdemeanor plea and plead guilty to a lesser infraction of harassment if he continues to attend treatment for six months.
Gooding was arrested in June 2019 after a 29-year-old woman told police he squeezed her breast without her consent at Magic Hour Rooftop Bar & Lounge, near Times Square.
A few months later, he was charged in two additional cases as more women came forward to accuse him of abuse. The new charges alleged he pinched a server’s buttocks after making a sexually suggestive remark to her at TAO Downtown and forcibly touched a woman inappropriately at the LAVO nightclub, both in 2018.
Gooding had previously pleaded not guilty to six misdemeanor counts and denied all allegations of wrongdoing. His lawyers have argued that overzealous prosecutors, caught up in the fervor of the #MeToo movement, are trying to turn “commonplace gestures” or misunderstandings into crimes.