Trump's Lawyers Waive Calling Witnesses In Trial For Alleged Rape Of Columnist E. Jean Carroll | International

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E. Jean Carroll arrives at the federal courthouse, this Wednesday in New York.Stefan Jeremiah (AP)

The defense of Donald Trump has announced this Wednesday that it will not call any witness to testify to refute the story of E. Jean Carroll, who accuses the former president of having raped her in a fitting room of a luxurious New York department store in the 1990s. The case could be seen for sentencing next week, after little more than two weeks of presentation of evidence and arguments. While the lawyers for the Republican candidate for re-election in 2024 seem to be clear about the verdict of innocence, the controversy grows over the main arguments used against the complainant: that she has allowed so much time to pass since what happened and that, at the time, she did not shout or resisted the alleged sexual assault. A new hashtag, #Ididntscream (I didn't scream), makes a fortune in the networks and, at the same time, spreads cases of other attacks silent, sympathizes with Carroll.

Joe Tacopina, who leads Trump's legal team, has informed the judge presiding over the civil trial that the expert the defense had cannot testify for health reasons, NBC News reported on Wednesday. In addition to the aforementioned expert, Trump himself was expected to testify, but he has also declined to do so, Tacopina confirmed. "It is his decision," replied the judge.

As it was a civil trial, the Republican did not face a possible prison sentence, and the fact that he resigned from the defense seems to indicate that, of all the proceedings against him, this is the one that worries him the least. A month ago, he was formally charged with 34 crimes for using money to silence his relationship with a porn actress. He is also being investigated for his attempt to reverse the electoral result of the presidential elections in Georgia in 2020, for taking classified material from the White House to his private residence in Florida and for his role in the assault on the Capitol by a Trumpist horde in January 2021. The trial for alleged rape, in addition to being old, was the last of his sleeplessness.

Trump has consistently denied Carroll's allegations that he raped her in a fitting room at Manhattan's upscale Bergdorf Goodman department store in the mid-1990s, calling the woman's claims a "hoax and scam." Carroll has sued her for assault and defamation, an accusation that he rejects, considering that she told the truth about the nature of her complaint. The defense argument of the tycoon, who is also being investigated for irregularities in his business, is based on the time elapsed since the events. Carroll, a successful columnist for fashion and current affairs magazines who, as she said at trial, has been prevented by the trauma of the attack from leading a normal affective life, has stated that she never reported the attack to the police because she felt ashamed and because she knew that he had everything to lose against such a powerful adversary. It was not until 2019 when she, inspired by the strength of the MeToo movement, to denounce sexual abuse by powerful men, she decided to speak out.

He filed the complaint in December last year, after a newly passed law in New York allowed adult victims of sex crimes to file civil lawsuits for a year, even if the statute of limitations had expired, as in Carroll's case. This invalidates the prescription argument raised by the defense.

Carrol's lawyers have called two witnesses to testify, both women who claim to have been sexually assaulted by the tycoon. The first did so this Wednesday and the second, who made his story public in 2016, the year Trump won the presidential election, will testify tomorrow. Carroll seeks compensation, the amount of which he has not disclosed, for damages.

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Revictimization of women

The lack of screaming inside the cabin where the rape allegedly took place has caused rivers of ink to flow. During the previous days, the plaintiff confronted Tacopina after he asked her, in a rather reproachful way, why she had not screamed. “You can't beat me up for not screaming,” Carroll told the lawyer. One of the reasons why women do not report, he continued, "is because they are always asked that: why didn't you scream?" The writer, who had been imperturbable up to that point, was moved. "I'm telling you," she told the lawyer, raising her voice, "she raped me whether I screamed or not!" According to the statement collected by the newspaper The New York Times.

Minutes after that interrogation, a message began to appear on social networks. hashtag (hashtag) in his defense: #Ididntscream, through which victims of assault shared their own stories of paralyzing silence. More than five years after the start of MeToo, the question about the lack of resistance, physical or verbal through shouting, continues to question and harass the victims, in what lawyers and activists denounce as a double moral scrutiny and an example of revictimization from the same. The Carroll case is further proof of this.

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