In November 2019, E. Jean Carroll, a former columnist for the Elle magazine, filed a defamation lawsuit against former President of the United States Donald Trump. Carroll’s lawyers will depose Trump in this case. Carroll filed the lawsuit after Trump denied her accusation that he raped her at the Bergdorf Goodman’s store in Manhattan in the mid-1990s. Trump said, “She’s not my type,” while stating he never knew Carroll and accusing her of fabricating the story to sell her new book.
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Carroll said that she still has the dress she was wearing when the former president attacked her. Regarding this, Carroll’s lawyers are seeking a DNA sample from Trump. If the DNA on the dress matches Trump’s, it won’t prove his guilt but would disprove his claims of having never met her.
According to Carroll’s complaint, she was a talk show host when she met Trump in the mid-1990s, so Trump recognized her, and the two of them spoke. Trump asked her to help him pick a gift for an unidentified woman, because of which the two landed up in the lingerie department. Trump asked her to try on a bodysuit. He then closed the door of a dressing room, pinned her against the wall, and sexually assaulted her.
Carroll said that she didn’t report the case at the time out of fear that the well-connected and wealthy business would seek retribution. Carroll made the story public in June 2019 through an article in a New York magazine. Carroll credits the #MeToo movement, which gave women the courage to share their experiences of sexual harassment and assault, as her inspiration. The defamation lawsuit by Carroll is one of the two involving sexual misconduct allegations against Trump.
There was a delay in the Trump investigation because his lawyers argued that his pressing duties as the US President made it impossible to respond to civil lawsuits. About this, Roberta Kaplan, Carroll’s attorney, said, “I think there will be a sense among the judges that it’s time to get a move on in these cases.” Neither an attorney for Trump nor another of his representatives respond to requests for comment.