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Harvey Weinstein found guilty of rape and sexual assault in Los Angeles trial

By: April Carson



On Monday, former movie producer Harvey Weinstein was found guilty of three out of seven charges, including rape. During the Los Angeles sexual assault trial, prosecutors revealed that he had taken advantage of his Hollywood status to entice women into private meetings and sexually abuse them.


The Los Angeles District Attorney's Office has stated that he may be subjected to a jail term of up to 24 years. His conviction marked the first high-profile celebrity trial of the ‘Me Too’ era, which has sparked a global conversation about sexual violence.


The jury found Harvey Weinstein not guilty of one count of sexual battery by restraint against another female victim. Unfortunately, they remained at an impasse on three other accounts which implicate two additional women – Jennifer Siebel Newsom, a filmmaker and first partner to California Governor Gavin Newsom included. These counts were for the charges of forcible oral copulation, rape and sexual battery by restraint respectively.


After a trial that lasted more than two months, the movie mogul was found guilty of three grave charges related to one single accuser: rape, sexual penetration by foreign object and forcible oral copulation. This individual — a model and actress who bravely testified in court about being assaulted in 2013 at a Beverly Hills hotel room— served as the star witness for this conviction.


Jane Doe 1, the plaintiff in this trial, was the pioneering witness to take her stand.

Jane Doe 1, whose life was forever altered by Harvey Weinstein in 2013, shared a statement through her attorney: "The criminal trial itself felt like torture. I know that I had to see this process to the end and thankfully did; however, it's my hope that Weinstein will never be able to step foot outside of prison ever again."


Weinstein assertively pled not guilty to all seven accusations leveled against him.

Despite his disappointment, Harvey Weinstein's spokesperson Juda Engelmayer expressed in a statement the grounds of appeal based on the time and location that this accuser presented. The jury carefully deliberated over their decision regarding other counts which left Weinstein hopeful to maintain his innocence as he continues fighting for it.


After 10 days of deliberation, the jury reached their verdict after 41 hours collectively spent pondering and discussing.


Elizabeth Fegan, Jane Doe 4's attorney, expressed disappointment that the jury could not arrive at a unified verdict on the indictments pertaining to her client.


Through sharing her story, my client Jane Doe 4 wanted to show solidarity and offer support for all survivors. Although we are pleased that the jury found Weinstein guilty of some counts, we regret that they could not reach a unanimous verdict on Jane Doe 4's claim. She is determined to fight for women and other victims of abuse who often suffer shame or re-trauma in seeking justice from our systems. This was expressed by Fegan in his statement shared with CNN.


In 2020, the Los Angeles jury took longer than their New York counterparts to come to a verdict in Harvey Weinstein's initial criminal trial. After an extensive 26 hours of discussion, they found him guilty on counts of rape and illicit sexual behavior.


Weinstein is already serving a 23-year jail sentence for his previous conviction, yet this has not stopped him from appealing the judgement. As such, all eyes are now on Los Angeles to see what will transpire in this upcoming trial.



On Tuesday, jurors will be asked to weigh in on aggravating factors that could influence the verdict of Harvey Weinstein's sentencing hearing. This is according to a statement from the District Attorney's office.


During the lengthy Los Angeles trial, witnesses such as a model, dancer, massage therapist and Siebel Newsom took to the stand where they emotionally relayed their experiences with Weinstein. Each person was asked to provide an account of their allegations against him along with details regarding meetings from years ago followed by sufficient explanation for how these events impacted them personally.


Weinstein was initially accused of 11 counts, but four pertaining to an unidentified female were abruptly dismissed with no explanation. The individual in question did not give evidence during the proceedings.


As the trial drew to an end, Deputy District Attorney Marlene Martinez described Harvey Weinstein as a "behemoth" who abused his fame in Hollywood to take advantage of and muffle female victims. Fellow prosecutor Paul Thompson added: “This is what rapists do - you can recognise their habitual pattern”.


With an array of unquestionable evidence, Thompson asserted the gravity of this man's actions and mistreatment towards women.


On the other hand, Weinstein's lawyers declared that either stories were fabricated or encounters occurred in agreement as part of a "transactional relationship" with the film producer and argued there was no sign of violation.


In the Los Angeles trial, Alan Jackson, a defense attorney for Weinstein, labeled the accusers pursuing him as "fame and fortune seekers" while testimony from four Jane Does identified in court was heard along with other witnesses including experts, police officers, friends of the victim's and previous aides to Weinstein.


Moreover, four women affirmed that Weinstein had subjected them to similar inappropriate behaviors in other territories.


Every morning during the trial, Harvey Weinstein was wheeled into the Los Angeles courtroom from a correctional facility wearing an impeccable suit and tie with a composition notebook in hand. His accusers each started their often highly charged testimonies by pointing him out sitting in court as they spoke.


At the end of last month, Siebel Newsom recounted a moment that would become one of the most poignant testimonies during trial: "He's wearing a suit and blue tie and he's staring at me." This was when Weinstein allegedly raped her in 2005 inside a hotel room.


During the trial, defense attorney Jackson posed a crucial query to jurors: could they "trust and rely on what (the Jane Does) say as absolute truth?" He argued that since there was no scientific proof validating their claims, it should be deemed questionable.


Siebel Newsom recounted an extensive period of being intimidated by her perpetrator, which ultimately led up to the assault. As other victims have experienced, she explained that it felt like a paralysis had taken over her body at that time.


The lawyers for Harvey Weinstein do not deny that the incident happened; however, they asserted it was consensual. Jackson expressed that this was a "consensual, transactional sex" and further emphasized: "Regret is completely different from rape. This distinction must be made in court."


In her final oration, Martinez spotlighted the female witnesses who willingly testified despite being aware of the hard conditions they would face in court. She noted: “I hope that every victim of sexual assault can see something in this trial that gives them additional strength to come forward and tell their own story.”


The jury found Harvey Weinstein guilty on two felony counts - one for a criminal sexual act in the first degree, and another for rape in the third degree. In addition he was found guilty of a third charge, predatory sexual assault - which carries a maximum sentence of life in prison.













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April Carson is the daughter of Billy Carson. She received her bachelor's degree in Social Sciences from Jacksonville University, where she was also on the Women's Basketball team. She now has a successful clothing company that specializes in organic baby clothes and other items. Take a look at their most popular fall fashions on bossbabymav.com


To read more of April's blogs, check out her website! She publishes new blogs on a daily basis, including the most helpful mommy advice and baby care tips! Follow on IG @bossbabymav


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