The verdict is expected soon in the civil trial brought by E. Jean Carroll, a former advice columnist, against former President Donald Trump. The trial centers around Carroll's claim that Trump raped her in a Manhattan department store in 1996.
The nine-person jury will decide the civil claims of battery and defamation, and if they find in favor of Carroll, compensatory and punitive damages may be awarded.
Carroll's lawyer, Roberta Kaplan, argued that Trump's own statements support her client's claims. She cited Trump's infamous comments from a 2005 "Access Hollywood" video in which he boasted about grabbing women's genitals without consent and his deposition in October.
Kaplan also pointed out that Trump did not attend the trial, and stated that "in a very real sense, Donald Trump is a witness against himself."
Trump's lawyer, Joe Tacopina, argued that Carroll made up the allegations to boost sales of her 2019 memoir and to harm Trump politically. He told the jury that Carroll's story was "too far fetched to be believed" and that she had based it on a 2012 episode of "Law and Order."
Carroll, 79, testified that she had a lighthearted interaction with Trump at Bergdorf Goodman store, which turned violent when he sexually assaulted her in a dressing room. Two of Carroll's friends testified that she had told them about the encounter with Trump shortly after it happened.
The trial has garnered widespread attention as it is one of several lawsuits and investigations involving Trump. If the jury finds in favor of Carroll, it could have significant implications for Trump's future legal battles and political aspirations. The verdict is expected soon, and the outcome of the case will be closely watched by many.
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