Former President Donald Trump is facing a civil prosecution over an allegation that he raped a columnist nearly 30 years ago. Tuesday will mark the beginning of jury selection in a New York federal court. Mr. Trump has denied E Jean Carroll's claim that he assaulted her in a New York department store. He asserts that she fabricated the claim for publicity purposes. Even though this is not a criminal case, Mr. Trump may still face severe consequences.
Incase Ms. Carroll wins the lawsuit, it will be the first time the former president, who has been accused of sexual assault more than two dozen times, is held legally liable for sexual assault. Mr. Trump faces a slew of other legal difficulties, including more than two dozen felony counts related to the payment of hush money to an adult film actress and an investigation into his alleged role in the 6 January 2021 riot at the United States Capitol.
Mr. Trump is also coordinating his upcoming campaign for the White House. Ms. Carroll, who is 79 years old, asserts that the assault occurred in a Manhattan Bergdorf Goodman store in late 1995 or early 1996.
She stated that the two had encountered each other while purchasing. Then, Mr. Trump allegedly asked her for guidance when purchasing lingerie for another woman and asked her to model it for him in jest. Ms. Carroll stated that once in the changing rooms, the real estate magnate pounced at her, pinned her against the wall, and assaulted her. She claims that she was able to dislodge him after a big struggle.
According to her complaint, she did not report the alleged encounter to police because she "was in shock and did not want to think of herself as a rape victim." Two of Ms. Carroll's acquaintances, Carol Martin and Lisa Birnbach, claim she told them within days of the alleged incident. Ms. Martin and Ms. Birchbach are on the list of potential witnesses Ms. Carroll may summon.
Mr. Trump has issued numerous denials in the years since Ms. Carroll's allegations surfaced in 2019. It is currently unknown whether Mr. Trump will appear during the trial, which is anticipated to last up to two weeks. He is not required to appear, and Ms Carroll's attorneys have stated that they have no intention of calling him as a witness.
The accuser's attorneys intend to play jurors a recording known as the Access Hollywood tape in which Mr Trump brags about groping women's genitalia. The attorneys for Ms Carroll also intend to summon as witnesses other women who claim to have been attacked by Mr Trump. Prior to this case, the author had previously sued Mr. Trump for defamation after he referred to her as a liar following the publication of her memoir.
This lawsuit is presently on hold as the courts debate whether former presidents can be sued legally. According to court documents, Reid Hoffman, co-founder of LinkedIn and Democratic donor, has aided Ms. Carroll's legal fees.
After learning of Mr. Hoffman's role, Mr. Trump's attorneys attempted to delay the trial, claiming it raised doubts about Ms. Carroll's motivations. The judge denied this motion but permitted the attorneys to question Ms. Carroll about the financing.