E Jean Carroll withstood a barrage of intensely private questions and inflammatory accusations throughout greater than 13 hours on the witness stand in her civil battery and defamation trial in opposition to former president Donald Trump.
The former Elle recommendation columnist was quizzed about years of emails, textual content messages, deposition statements, articles and social media posts by Mr Trump’s lawyer Joe Tacopina as he tried to sow doubt within the minds of the 9 jurors who will decide whether or not she was raped by Mr Trump in a Bergdorf Goodman dressing room in Manhattan in 1996.
Ms Carroll, 79, remained stoic for many of her marathon testimony. She was at occasions humorous, defiant, and emotional as she was compelled to recall the traumatic alleged sexual assault that occurred practically three a long time earlier.
Entering the witness field on day two of the trial on Wednesday 26 April, she started by saying: “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 to get my life back.”
Ms Carroll is suing the previous president in civil court docket for defamation and battery after he claimed she was a “con job”. Mr Trump, 76, has strongly denied the encounter ever passed off.
Here are six memorable moments from Ms Carroll’s testimony.
‘I was amazed that a woman would be asked that in 2023’
Ms Carroll testified that she and Mr Trump had engaged in lighthearted banter as they wandered by means of a abandoned sixth flooring of the posh Manhattan division retailer Bergdorf Goodman one spring night in 1996.
That modified right away when he allegedly shoved her up in opposition to a wall on one of many dressing rooms, she stated.
Still unsure what was taking place, Ms Carroll informed the court docket she laughed at the actual property tycoon as a strategy to defuse the scenario.
As the alleged sexual assault continued, Ms Carroll stated she was crammed with adrenaline as she pushed and kicked again in opposition to the a lot bigger man.
Under cross-examination from Mr Tacopina on Thursday 27 April, the previous Elle recommendation columnist was repeatedly requested why she hadn’t screamed through the assault.
“I was in too much of a panic to scream, I was fighting,” she stated.
When Mr Tacopina pressed once more, she replied: “You can’t beat up on me for not screaming.”
“One of the reasons why women don’t come forward is they are asked ‘why didn’t you scream’. It keeps women silent.”
Judge Lewis Kaplan finally grew impatient with the defence lawyer’s questions.
“It’s argumentative, it’s repetitive and it’s inappropriate,” Judge Kaplan stated throughout certainly one of a number of scoldings.
Under questioning from her lawyer Mike Ferrara, Ms Carroll stated: “I was amazed that a woman would be asked that in 2023.”
Law & Order parallel plot traces
Seeking to undermine Ms Carroll’s allegations, Mr Tacopina questioned her a few 2012 episode of Law & Order: Special Victims Unit on the third day of testimony on Monday 1 May.
Titled Theatre Tricks, the episode’s plotline depicts a male character who fantasises about bursting in on a girl making an attempt on lingerie in a dressing room of the Bergdorf Goodman division retailer, the jury was informed.
Mr Tacopina confirmed the jury a 2019 electronic mail despatched to Ms Carroll by her buddy Grace Brophy weeks after she went public with the allegations in New York journal.
Ms Brophy warned the author that “Trumpsters will use this against you”.
Ms Carroll replied to her buddy that she hadn’t seen the episode, however was solely shocked that “this sort of plot is not seen more often”.
Ms Carroll testified that she was a “big fan” of Law & Order, however didn’t just like the SVU spinoff because it was too violent.
Asked by Mr Tacopina why she wasn’t shocked on the similarities, she informed the court docket that the crime drama was “very good at keying into the psyche of their viewers”.
“That was amazing to me,” she stated when she discovered in regards to the episode.
Mr Tacopina appeared incredulous, and requested if she meant it was an “amazing coincidence”.
“Astonishing,” she shot again.
Questioned later by her lawyer Mr Ferrara, Ms Carroll stated she had by no means seen the episode or heard about it previous to 2019.
“Are you making up your accusation based on what happened in a popular TV show?” he requested.
“No,” she replied.
‘Wave of slime’
Under questioning from her lawyer Mr Ferrara on Thursday 27 April, Ms Carroll informed how she could be inundated with a “wave of slime” each time Mr Trump commented or posted about her allegations.
“It’s very hard to get up in the morning and receive those messages, that you are way too ugly to go on living.”
Ms Carroll stated she had “peeked” at Twitter previous to coming to court docket on that morning, and was met with a well-recognized stream of abusive and threatening messages.
“There it was again, the onslaught,” she stated. “It’s not a great way to start the day.”
Ms Carroll added: “I like attention, there is no question. I don’t like attention because I’m suing Donald Trump, getting attention for being raped is hard.”
The court docket was given a pattern of the vulgar messages despatched to Ms Carroll by supporters of the previous president.
After the allegations had been first made in a e-book excerpt in New York journal in June 2019, Mr Trump angrily denied it in an official White House assertion.
Mr Trump repeated the denials days later in an Oval Office interview with The Hill, saying: “Number one, she’s not my type. Number two, it never happened. It never happened, OK?”
Ms Carroll testified that “not my type”, had meant she was “too ugly” to be sexually assaulted.
Ms Carroll filed a defamation lawsuit in opposition to Mr Trump alleging he had broken her repute, considerably harmed her professionally, and induced emotional ache.
She filed a second swimsuit for battery and defamation after Mr Trump posted defamatory statements in October 2022 the place he referred to as her a “complete con job”.
Ms Carroll stated concern of reprisals from Mr Trump was a major consider remaining silent over so a few years.
“I was afraid that Donald Trump would retaliate, which is exactly what he did,” she stated. “My biggest fears came absolutely true.”
MeToo and Harvey Weinstein
Ms Carroll informed the court docket that when she started work on her memoir, she hadn’t supposed to jot down in regards to the alleged assault by Mr Trump.
Seeking inspiration, she took a “feminist road trip” throughout the United States in 2017 searching for to reply the query: “What do we need men for?”
Around the identical time, sexual assault allegations in opposition to the disgraced filmmaker Harvey Weinstein grew to become public through the preliminary wave of the MeToo motion.
She determined she couldn’t stay silent any longer.
“I was not a pioneer, I am a follower,” she stated throughout cross-examination on Thursday 27 April.
“I saw other women coming forward after Harvey Weinstein and I thought, ‘Who am I to stay silent’. Also, I was 78 or 79, I had been silent for too long.”
In her e-book What Do We Need Men For? A Modest Proposal, Ms Carroll additionally alleged she had been sexually assaulted by the disgraced former CBS CEO and president Les Moonves.
In a heated alternate with Mr Tacopina, Ms Carroll stated that she had not sued Mr Moonves for defamation as a result of he had merely denied the declare.
“He didn’t call me names, he didn’t grind my face into the mud like Donald Trump did.”
Ms Carroll was questioned in court docket about how she had come to the choice to sue Mr Trump.
She testified that she had been requested in interviews by a number of journalists whether or not she was planning to pursue authorized motion in opposition to the then-president.
The thought had “crystalised” throughout a dialog with George Conway, the constitutional authorized professional, at a celebration at writer Molly Jong-Fast’s residence in 2019, she stated.
The occasion, attended by Kathy Griffin, former Hillary Clinton aide Philippe Reines, and broadcaster Soledad O’Brien, was described in The New York Times as “Resistance Twitter come to life”.
Mr Trump’s attorneys have tried to painting Ms Carroll as being motivated by a staunch anti-Trump political ideology.
Asked in regards to the assembly for a second time beneath cross-examination, Ms Carroll stated that Mr Conway had talked her by means of the variations between a civil and felony trial.
He had additionally beneficial famed civil rights lawyer Roberta Kaplan to her as authorized counsel. She testified that two days after the occasion, she retained Ms Kaplan.
Mr Conway, who’s divorcing Mr Trump’s former senior White House counsel Kellyanne Conway, emerged as one of many former president’s main critics throughout his time period in workplace.
He additionally had a significant hand within the impeachment of one other former president, Bill Clinton.
In 2018, Mr Conway informed Yahoo News how he helped convey the Monica Lewinsky scandal to mild after being outraged on the Democratic president’s sexual misconduct whereas in workplace within the Nineties.
He wrote nameless authorized briefs for the attorneys of Paula Jones, a former Arkansas state worker who accused Mr Clinton of sexual harassment, which contributed to his impeachment for “high crimes and misdemeanours” in 1998.
Incapable of discovering love
Ms Carroll described how she had led a twin existence for the reason that alleged 1996 rape.
There was her public persona, as a assured, profitable Ask E Jean recommendation columnist, writer and tv presenter.
And then there was the personal E Jean who “can’t admit out loud that there has been any suffering”, she stated throughout testimony.
She had publicly disregarded the 1996 encounter with Mr Trump as not having induced her any lasting harm.
Ms Carroll would write in her 2019 memoir that she suffered “very little” from the alleged assault. She defined in court docket that was her “invincible” public self, by no means eager to admit weak spot.
If she ever obtained a message from a reader who had been sexually assaulted, Ms Carroll stated she would all the time advise them to go to the police and see a therapist.
But she admitted she had not taken her personal recommendation on board, and the alleged sexual assault had induced her to privately undergo waves of crippling anxiousness assaults and left her incapable of forming relationships, she stated.
She testified that she has not had a romantic companion for the reason that alleged assault.