E. Jean Carroll's Suit Against Trump Continues as Judge Denies Mistrial

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E. Jean Carroll has accused the Donald J. Trump of raping her, and the case is continuing Monday in federal court in Manhattan, where she faced further cross-examination.

E. Jean Carroll has accused the Donald J. Trump of raping her, and the case is continuing Monday in federal court in Manhattan, where she faced further cross-examination.

Jean Carroll says Donald J. Trump raped her in a dressing room at Bergdorf Goodman, a luxury department store, in the mid-1990s. Credit... Anna Watts for The New York TimesBy Lola Fadulu, Kate Christobek and Benjamin Weiser May 1, 2023

Jean Carroll’s case accusing Donald J. Trump of raping her in a department-store dressing room continues Monday in Federal District Court in Manhattan.The case against the former president, who has denied all wrongdoing, began last Tuesday and was expected to last one to two weeks.

Mr. Trump’s lawyers on Monday filed an unsuccessful motion for a mistrial, arguing that the court had made “pervasive unfair and prejudicial rulings.”The Accusation Ms. Carroll, a former advice columnist for Elle magazine, says she visited Bergdorf Goodman, a department store where she was a regular shopper, one evening in the mid-1990s.As she was leaving through a revolving side door on 58th Street, Mr. Trump entered through the same door, and recognized her, the suit says, and persuaded her to help him shop for a gift for a female friend.She has accused the former president of going on to attack her in a dressing room in the lingerie department.In the CourtroomJoseph Tacopina, a lawyer for Mr. Trump, spent last week questioning Ms. Carroll about what exactly she says happened in the dressing room.

On Monday, his cross-examination pivoted to what she decided to do afterward.The mood on Monday wasn’t as tense as it was last week, but there were still moments of frustration amid the stop-and-start questioning. Mr. Tacopina asked Ms. Carroll why she had not called the police after the alleged assault, and why she had called the police when children vandalized a mailbox that belonged to an actor she knew.

He asked if she would confirm that she would “call the police if a mailbox was attacked” but not when she said she was “personally attacked” by Mr. Trump.“Listen, I was ashamed of what happened,” Ms. Carroll testified.

I thought it was my fault.”It is common for people who are sexually assaulted to not come forward right away, and those who are accusing someone powerful face additional barriers to speaking up.

Only 310 out of every 1,000 sexual assaults are reported to police, according to RAINN, the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network. Mr. Tacopina also asked Ms. Carroll how she felt about Mr. Trump as a politician, and why she had decided to sue him.

And he asked why she hadn’t filed a lawsuit against Les Moonves, CBS’s former chief executive, whom she had also accused of sexually assaulting her in her 2019 memoir, allegations that Mr. Moonves denies.“He didn’t call me names,” Ms. Carroll said.

He didn’t grind my face into the mud like Donald Trump did.”Monday Morning MotionJudge Lewis A. Kaplan denied a motion filed by Mr. Tacopina, asking him to declare a mistrial.Among other complaints, Mr. Tacopina had argued that the judge had mischaracterized evidence to favor Ms. Carroll and improperly bolster her testimony; allowed her to note that Mr. Trump had two tables’ worth of lawyers while prohibiting the defense from noting she had a similar number; and wrongly sustained “argumentative” objections to his questions.“While defendant recognizes that the court has discretion with respect to evidentiary matters,” Mr. Tacopina wrote, “there comes a point where the cumulative effect of its one-sided rulings manifests a deeper leaning towards one party or another.”ImageJoseph Tacopina, Mr. Trump’s lawyer, has probed for inconsistencies in Ms. Carroll’s account in a cross-examination that began last week.Credit...Jefferson Siegel for The New York TimesHarrowing TestimonySince lawyers gave their opening statements last week, Ms. Carroll has been the main witness.

She related her story in graphic detail.“I am here because Donald Trump raped me, and when I wrote about it, he said it didn’t happen,” Ms. Carroll said. He lied and shattered my reputation, and I am here to try to get my life back.”Ms. Carroll testified that she told two friends about her experience within a day of the attack.

One told her she had been raped and that she needed to go to the police.

A second told her not to tell anyone because Mr. Trump was powerful and had a team of lawyers who would bury her.She kept silent for decades before writing about the event in the memoir. What Ms. Carroll SeeksMs. Carroll sued Mr. Trump in November under a new state law in New York that grants adult sexual abuse victims a one-year window to bring civil lawsuits against people they say abused them.Her lawsuit, filed in federal court because she and Mr.

Trump live in different states, asks that a jury find Mr. Trump liable for battery and defamation, make him retract statements about her questioning her truthfulness and award her monetary damages.


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