OAN’s Brooke Mallory
5:10 PM – Monday, August 7, 2023
On Monday, a federal court judge dismissed former President Donald Trump’s countersuit against E. Jean Carroll, a writer who previously accused the former president of rape and other sexual abuse.
U.S. District Judge Lewis Kaplan, who coincidentally has the same last name as Carroll’s lawyer, stated that Trump cannot argue that she defamed him by continuing to allege she was raped and sexually abused.
Carroll reportedly won her sexual abuse lawsuit against Trump, however, the jury also declared that he did not rape her, like she claims. Rape and sexual abuse are classified differently.
E. Jean Carroll is now pursuing her own defamation claim against Trump.
Alina Habba, Trump’s attorney, stated that his team will be “challenging the flawed decision.”
Carroll’s lawyer, Robbie Kaplan, said she was delighted with the dismissal and is looking forward to the trial in January, which involves a series of statements Trump made in disputing her sexual assault accusation.
“E. Jean Carroll looks forward to obtaining additional compensatory and punitive damages” in that trial, Kaplan said.
Carroll accused Trump of trapping her in a luxury department store dressing room in 1996. Although, she originally admitted that she could not remember the date(s) of the alleged sexual misconduct incident.
The writer went on to claim that Trump forced her to kiss him, ripped down her tights, and then raped her while she tried to push him off.
Trump has adamantly denied all allegations, and has even labeled the writer as a creative “whack job” who made up “a fraudulent and false story” in order to promote a memoir.
A civil court jury found this spring that Trump sexually mistreated Carroll but rejected her claim that he raped her. Legally, the distinction was determined by the specifics of how, in the jury’s opinion, he penetrated her against her will.
According to the applicable New York statute, rape involves forcible penetration by a penis, whereas sexual abuse involves forcible penetration by a finger. Carroll claimed that both rape and abuse had occurred.
Trump then subsequently sued Carroll, asserting that her comments were defamatory. He sought a retraction as well as financial payments as retribution.
“These false statements were clearly contrary to the jury verdict,” attorneys argued in court papers, highlighting that the panel had found that rape “clearly was not committed” by Trump.
“The difference between Ms. Carroll’s allegedly defamatory statements — that Mr. Trump ‘raped’ her as defined in the New York Penal Law — and the ‘truth’ — that Mr. Trump forcibly digitally penetrated Ms. Carroll — are minimal,” said Judge Lewis A. Kaplan. “Both are felonious sex crimes.”
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