Donald Trump sexually abused the writer and journalist Jean Carroll inside the changing rooms of a Manhattan department store in the spring of 1996. The Republican magnate and politician also defamed his victim by calling her a liar, and for all this he will have to compensate her with some 5 million dollars: 2 million for sexual abuse and almost 3 million for damage to his image. This is what the jury determined yesterday in the case for Carroll’s civil lawsuit against Trump for defamation and rape, the latter charge that was dismissed.
Carroll, 79, testified during the trial that the now-candidate for re-election in the 2024 presidential election raped her in the dressing room of the Bergdorf Goodman store in Manhattan and then severely damaged her reputation by writing on his Truth Social network in October. of 2022, that her allegations were a “complete scam,” “a hoax,” and “a lie.”
In his testimony during the pre-trial proceedings, Trump confirmed the alleged falsehood of the plaintiff’s accusations and also reaffirmed his infamous 2005 statement, published on the eve of the elections that he would win in 2016, in the sense that “when you’re a star” you can grab women by the genitals because they “let you do it.”
Specifically, and when asked by Carroll’s lawyer, Roberta Kaplan, Trump said about that statement of his: “Well, historically, that is true with the stars. If you look at the last million years, I guess that’s been largely true…unfortunately or fortunately.” And when the lawyer wanted to know if he considered himself a star, Trump replied that he did: “You can say it like that,” she added.
Carroll was helped by Trump’s mistakes, by a friend who confirmed his version and by two victims of the leader
In the same appearance, held last October, Trump also clamorously screwed up when referring to his victim. Because he also assured that Carroll was not “his type of her” of her but, when they showed him an old photo with her, he mistook her for her second wife, Marla Maples: a woman of whom he is supposed to be the kind of her
These two errors in his testimony could have been decisive in the conviction of the jury in what constitutes the second major judicial setback against Trump in little more than a month after his indictment and delivery for his arrest, at the beginning of April, as a defendant for 34 forgery charges relating to his $160,000 bribe to porn actress Stormy Daniels.
The jury in Carroll’s civil suit, made up of six men and three women, reached a guilty verdict against the Republican leader in less than three hours. On the previous day, on Monday, the former president’s lawyer, Joe Tacopina, argued in his final argument that the alleged sexual assault never occurred and was a story invented “for political reasons” and for the plaintiff’s personal promotion.
Tacopina argued that, if the accusation had been true, Carroll would have denounced it through criminal proceedings just after the events. In this regard, Carroll argued on her day that if she did not file a complaint at the time, it was for fear of losing the case and, instead, being immediately marked. And she pointed out that a friend of hers advised her against taking action against the powerful Trump.
The reaction of the former president
“A shameful verdict,” divce Trump
As soon as the verdict of the jury in the Carroll case against him was known, Donald Trump disqualified the decision and insisted that he does not know the writer and journalist. “I have no idea who this woman is. This verdict is disgraceful, the continuation of the greatest witch hunt of all time,” the former president and re-election candidate wrote, in all caps, on his network, Truth Social. .
At the trial, Carroll had the support of another of the friends to whom she told what happened immediately after: the writer Lisa Birnbach. “I’m here because my friend, who was a good person, told me about something terrible that happened to her, and as a result, she lost her job and her life became very, very difficult. I want the world to know that she is telling the truth,” Birnbach said.
Two other alleged victims of Trump abuse also served as key prosecution witnesses. First, Jessica Leeds, 81, claimed that in 1979 her defendant kissed her, groped her and reached up her skirt on a flight to New York. Later, Natasha Stoynoff, a reporter for People magazine, testified that Trump pinned her against a wall and forcibly kissed her at his Mar-a-Lago mansion in 2005, where she had gone to write an article about the first anniversary of his marriage to Melania Trump.
The ex-president ultra does not seem to know limits. They are saying it in the courts: theirs is a crime.