A civil trial is scheduled to begin Tuesday over a columnist’s claims that former President Donald Trump raped her in a department store dressing room.
Jury selection is set to begin in federal court in Manhattan in the trial, which will focus on writer E Jean Carroll’s claims that Trump raped her in the mid-1990s.
The trial comes as Trump faces mounting legal troubles, including the historic first criminal complaint against a former US president in Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg’s hush money investigation.
Trump could be in New York City for the third time this month on Tuesday for the court hearing. After pleading not guilty to 34 counts of hush money on April 4, Trump sat for his second testimony on April 13 in New York Attorney General Letitia James’ $250 million civil lawsuit alleging fraud by him and his Company.
Carroll has indicated she plans to testify.
Meanwhile, it’s unknown if Florida resident Trump will appear in court or take the stand. A lawyer for Trump has said they will decide during the trial whether the ex-president takes oath, the Washington Post reported. Trump is not required to appear in court.
Carroll, an advice columnist for Elle Magazine, claims Trump sexually assaulted her at the luxury department store Bergdorf Goodman. Carroll claims that in the lingerie department, Trump “grabbed both of her arms” and “tucked his hand under her coat dress and pulled down her pantyhose.” Trump undid his pants, “then slipped his fingers around Carroll’s genitals and forced his penis inside them,” their lawsuit states.
Trump has said the alleged events “never happened,” and said in 2019 he “never met that person in my life.” Last year, Trump wrote on his platform Truth Social that Carroll’s allegations were a “joke” and that “this woman is not my type!”.
Carroll is seeking unspecified damages for battery and defamation and for Trump to withdraw his statement on social media last year.
Trump tried to delay the trial, but US District Judge Lewis Kaplan denied the request a week ago.
The study is expected to last a week or more.
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