In recent developments, U.S. Judge Lewis A. Kaplan stated that former President Donald J. Trump’s actions towards E. Jean Carroll could be construed as “rape,” despite a jury’s decision not to label them as such in a recent civil trial in New York.
Judge Kaplan’s filing elucidated that while the jury did not find Trump guilty of rape under the New York Penal Law, his actions might still align with the broader societal understanding of the term “rape.” This clarification emerges as Trump’s defense seeks a new trial, asserting the $5 million verdict was unwarranted and that the alleged sexual abuse could have been less severe actions such as “groping.”
Despite not convicting Trump of rape, the jury did find him liable for sexual abuse and battery related to an incident that took place in a department store dressing room. Interestingly, Carroll couldn’t even recall the year of the alleged incident, let alone the specific day or month it supposedly occurred.
The trial was overseen by Judge Kaplan, who was appointed by Bill Clinton. Throughout the proceedings, Judge Kaplan made controversial decisions, including allowing the Access Hollywood leak as evidence against Trump. This has led to accusations that the trial was heavily influenced by political motives, casting doubts on the integrity of our justice system.
Adding to the complexity of the situation, Kaplan permitted Carroll to seek further damages for alleged defamation by Trump, stemming from his criticism of her claims during a CNN town hall. The hearing for these additional damages is scheduled for January 2024. However, many fear that if Trump has to face court again for what they view as a baseless claim by Carroll, it could spark mass outrage among the majority of Americans. This potential outrage might even play a role in assisting Trump’s 2024 Presidential campaign.