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Judge Delivers Serious Smackdown in Rejecting Trump Request for New Trial in E. Jean Carroll Case



A federal judge has rejected Donald Trump’s request for a new trial after a jury in civil court awarded E. Jean Carroll $5 million, finding the ex-president liable for defamation and sexual assault in May. But the judge on Wednesday also dealt a serious blow to Trump.

“The jury in this case did not reach ‘a seriously erroneous result,'” Judge Lewis Kaplan said in his opinion denying Trump’s request, ABC News reports. “Its verdict is not ‘a miscarriage of justice.'”

Trump’s attorneys argued that because the jury found Trump liable for sexual assault but not rape the case should be tossed.

“Such abuse could have included groping of Plaintiffs breasts through clothing or similar conduct, which is a far cry from rape,” Trump’s attorneys argued in requesting a new trial. “Therefore, an award of $2 million for such conduct, which admittedly did not cause any diagnosed mental injury to Plaintiff, is grossly excessive under the applicable case law.”

But Politico’s Kyle Chandler reports, Judge Kaplan, in his order rejecting Trump’s request, “says the Carroll jury did, in fact, find Trump raped her, based on the common definition of the word.”

READ MORE: ‘Unusual’: Judge Cannon Denies Special Counsel Request for a Protective Order in Trump Espionage Act Case

Judge Kaplan writes, “the definition of rape in the New York Penal Law is far narrower than the meaning of ‘rape’ in common modern parlance, its definition in some dictionaries, in some federal and state criminal statutes, and elsewhere.”

“The finding that Ms. Carroll failed to prove that she was ‘raped’ within the meaning of the New York Penal Law does not mean that she failed to prove that Mr. Trump ‘raped’ her as many people commonly understand the word ‘rape.’ Indeed, as the evidence at trial recounted below makes clear, the jury found that Mr. Trump in fact did exactly that.”

Kaplan calls Trump’s argument “entirely unpersuasive.”

He adds: “This jury did not award Ms. Carroll more than $2 million for groping her breasts through her clothing, wrongful as that might have been. There was no evidence at all of such behavior. Instead, the proof convincingly established, and the jury implicitly found, that Mr. Trump deliberately and forcibly penetrated Ms. Carroll’s vagina with his fingers, causing immediate pain and long lasting emotional and psychological harm.”

“Mr. Trump’s argument therefore ignores the bulk of the evidence at trial, misinterprets the jury’s verdict, and mistakenly focuses on the New York Penal Law definition of ‘rape’ to the exclusion of the meaning of that word as it often is used in everyday life and of the evidence of what actually occurred between Ms. Carroll and Mr. Trump.”


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