Minnie Mouse Groping Trial Goes To Jury

August 12th, 2009 by

ORLANDO, Fla. – Closing arguments were presented Monday night in the case of a woman who said a 60-year-old man groped her while she was in costume as Minnie Mouse at Walt Disney World.

John Moyer, who is a grandfather, was charged with misdemeanor battery after being accused of touching the woman’s chest and buttocks in the Toontown area of the Magic Kingdom.

Prosecutors said photographs show the Disney cast member pushing Moyer’s hands away from her after he touched her.

“It doesn’t matter she was grabbed. She’s just a mouse,” prosecutor David Bear said, arguing against the defense. “It’s not just a mouse. It’s a person.”

Moyer’s attorney said the photos only prove that his client was having fun while on vacation from Pennsylvania with his family.

The woman playing Minnie Mouse said she did not yell for help because she feared that she could lose her job for being out of character. She did report the alleged incident after Moyer left the area, according to investigators.

Sheriff’s deputies tracked Moyer down by using photographs and arrested him.

In court, prosecutors said Disney characters are no different than servers at restaurants.

“It’s not OK to go to the diner and pinch a waitress’ butt anymore, and it’s not OK to go to a theme park and pinch a character’s butt,” Bear said.

The defense countered by saying that there were nine other people in the room, including Moyer’s family and other Disney employees who are assigned to watch over the characters and none of them witnessed anything inappropriate.

“The state wants you to believe this man, in front of all these people, molested this woman. No one saw it. It was never caught on camera,” said defense attorney, Zahra Umansky.

If found guilty, Moyer, who was not charged with felony sexual battery, faces a maximum sentence of one year in jail and a $1,000 fine.

The incident is not the first time a Disney character has been at the center of a groping investigation.

In 2004, a man who played Tigger at the theme park was accused of fondling a 13-year-old girl while in costume. A jury found Michael Chartrand not guilty and Disney welcomed him back to work, but he has since returned home to England.

Watch Local 6 News for more on this story.

One Response

  1. The other 49 states

    If we give you $1,000,000,000,000 will you Floridians promise to succeed from the Union? We’re passing the hat around even as we speak.

Leave a Comment

Please note: Comment moderation is enabled and may delay your comment. There is no need to resubmit your comment. You are free to voice your opinion but please keep it clean. Any comments using profanity will be rejected.