A Manhattan federal jury has found that former U.S. President Donald Trump sexually abused writer, E. Jean Carroll, in a luxury department store dressing room in 1996.
The jury subsequently awarded her $5 million for battery and defamation, CNN reports.
Carroll had sued Trump, saying she was raped by the former president after she accompanied him into a department store fitting room in 1996.
Carroll told jurors that Trump’s lie that he didn’t rape her had shattered her life.
- Advertisement -
“At first, she thought helping Donald Trump shop for a women’s lingerie gift at a luxury department store would simply be “a funny New York thing.”
Even when, according to Carroll, the then-businessman motioned her to a dressing room as they dared each other to try on a see-through bodysuit, she imagined something like a “Saturday Night Live” sketch she’d written.
But within minutes, “my whole reason for being alive in that moment was to get out of that room,” Carroll had testified in the trial of her rape lawsuit, as earlier reported by AP News.
“I’m here because Donald Trump raped me, and when I wrote about it, he said it didn’t happen. He lied and shattered my reputation, and I’m here to try and get my life back,” Carroll told jurors.
From afar, Trump repeated his insistence that Carroll’s allegation of the 1996 rape is utter fiction, writing on his social media site that the case “is a made-up scam,” and more.
“This is a fraudulent & false story — Witch Hunt!” Trump wrote on his Truth Social platform. His comments prompted the judge to warn Trump’s lawyers that he could bring more legal problems upon himself.
Carroll alleged that after raping her, Trump defamed her when he denied her claim and suggested she made up the story to boost sales of her book.
Trump denied all wrongdoing.
Carroll filed the lawsuit last November under the “New York State Adult Survivors Act,” a state bill which opened a look-back window for sexual assault allegations like Carroll’s with long-expired statutes of limitation.
Trump did not attend the trial. Like any defendant in a civil case, he was not required to appear in court for trial or any proceedings and has a right not to testify in his own defence.
Carroll left the courthouse after the verdict without speaking to reporters.