E Jean Carroll sues Trump over CNN town hall insults
E Jean Carroll’s lawyers have formally asked to amend her remaining defamation lawsuit against Donald Trump to include remarks made by the former president at a CNN town hall.
Roberta Kaplan filed a proposed update to the $10m Manhattan civil court complaint on Monday to include comments made by Mr Trump after he was found liable for the sexual assault and defamation of Ms Carroll by jury trial in New York.
“He doubled down on his prior defamatory statements, asserting to an audience all too ready to cheer him on that ‘I never met this woman. I never saw this woman,’ that he did not sexually assault Carroll, and that her account — which had just been validated by a jury of Trump’s peers one day before — was a ‘fake,’ ‘made up story’ invented by a ‘whack job’,” the proposed amended lawsuit states.
“Those statements resulted in enthusiastic cheers and applause from the audience on live TV,” the suit adds.
Ms Carroll sued the former president for defamation after he angrily denied allegations in her 2019 memoir that he had sexually assaulted her in a dressing room at Bergdorf Goodman in the 1990s.
In 2022, after New York opened a one-year window for survivors of sexual assault to sue their accusers regardless of when the alleged attacks occurred, Ms Carroll sued him in a separate lawsuit for battery and defamation.
On 9 May the jury deliberating over the second lawsuit awarded Ms Carroll $5m in damages after finding she had proved the case on a preponderous of evidence.
Mr Trump has appealed the $5m jury verdict.
The day after the jury returned its verdict, Mr Trump appeared on a CNN town hall where he branded her sexual abuse claim against him “fake” and a “made up story” during a CNN town hall.
Ms Carroll told The New York Times in an interview that Mr Trump’s comments on CNN were “stupid, disgusting and vile”.
Ms Carroll’s initial defamation lawsuit, dubbed Carroll I, became bogged down in litigation after Mr Trump asked the Justice Department to defend him. The case is currently before a lower court, awaiting a possible trial date.
Her attorney Ms Kaplan on Monday said in the amended complaint that the ex-president “has sought to delay and evade these proceedings in every way he could”.
At trial, Ms Carroll testified that she was leaving Bergdorf Goodman when she had a chance encounter with Mr Trump some time in 1996.
The meeting was friendly at first, but Mr Trump later led her to a dressing room on the 6th floor luxury department store and shoved her up against a wall before violating her.
Ms Carroll told the jury that she had been fearful of speaking out about the assault, and only told two close friends.
Despite complaining that he was not receiving a fair trial, Mr Trump declined to give evidence on his own behalf.
Instead, the jury were played the infamous Access Hollywood tapes, in which he boasted that “stars” were able to get away with sexually assaulting women.