Former President Donald Trump’s bid for a new trial in the E. Jean Carroll case has been denied by a federal judge in New York. This comes two months after a jury found Trump liable for sexual abuse and defamation against Carroll.
Trump’s Motion for New Trial Denied
In his motion for a new trial, Trump argued that the jury’s award of $2 million in compensatory damages for the sexual abuse claim was excessive because they found him liable for sexual abuse but not rape, which was Carroll’s original allegation. He also claimed that the jury’s award of $2.7 million in compensatory damages for the defamation claim should be reduced as he disputed the testimony of an expert witness on which it was based. Additionally, Trump argued that the punitive damages award of $228,000 violated his constitutional right to due process.
Judge Upholds Verdict, Dismisses Trump’s Arguments
In a 59-page decision, U.S. District Judge Lewis Kaplan wrote that the proof convincingly established that “Mr. Trump deliberately and forcibly penetrated Ms. Carroll’s vagina with his fingers, causing immediate pain and long-lasting emotional and psychological harm.” The judge dismissed Trump’s arguments, stating that they ignore the bulk of the evidence presented during the trial, misinterpret the jury’s verdict, and focus on the New York Penal Law definition of “rape” to the exclusion of the meaning of that word as it is often used in everyday life. The judge also noted that the jury’s verdict was not a miscarriage of justice.
Trump’s Appeal Remains Pending
Trump is separately contesting the verdict before a federal appeals court, and that appeal remains pending. Carroll also has a separate defamation lawsuit against Trump, and the trial over that case is scheduled for January 2024. A lawyer for Carroll, Robbie Kaplan, stated, “Now that the court has denied Trump’s motion for a new trial or to decrease the amount of the verdict, E Jean Carroll looks forward to receiving the $5 million in damages that the jury awarded her at trial.” She added that Carroll “also looks forward to continuing to hold Trump accountable” at next year’s trial.
No Comment from Trump’s Lawyer
A lawyer for Trump, Joe Tacopina, did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Overall, the judge’s decision to deny Trump’s motion for a new trial in the E. Jean Carroll case marks another chapter in the ongoing legal battles between Trump and his accusers. The verdict stands, and the case serves as a reminder of the importance of accountability for those in positions of power.