Judge: Spacey accuser’s phone must be turned over to defense

Kevin Spacey attends a pretrial hearing on Monday, June 3, 2019, at district court in Nantucket, Mass.

NANTUCKET, Mass. (AP) — A Massachusetts judge says a phone used by a young man who says Kevin Spacey groped him at a bar must be turned over to the defense.

The actor’s lawyer told the judge at a hearing Monday that they need the accuser’s phone so an expert can try to recover text messages his lawyer says support Spacey’s claims of innocence.

Nantucket District Judge Thomas Barrett said Friday that the phone must be turned over by June 21.

Spacey is accused of groping the then-18-year-old man in a crowded bar on the resort island in 2016.

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Spacey’s lawyers say the man deleted text messages that could help the actor’s defense.

Spacey attended Monday’s hearing but didn’t speak or respond to questions from reporters.

The accuser’s attorney declined to comment Friday.