Breaking news out of New York City where prosecutors have dropped one of the criminal charges against Hollywood mogul Harvey Weinstein:
BREAKING: New York prosecutor drops part of sex assault case against Harvey Weinstein.
— The Associated Press (@AP) October 11, 2018
This is actually a really big deal as Weinstein’s legal team is accusing the woman of perjuring herself:
One charge in a six count sexual assault indictment dismissed against former movie mogul Harvey Weinstein. Defense says one accuser perjured herself and calls this a major victory. Prosecution says the case will still go forward based on accusations by two other women.
— Rehema Ellis (@rehemaellis) October 11, 2018
The dropped charge involved allegations made by actress Lucia Evans, who accused Weinstein of rape:
Lucia Evans attorney denouncing Manhattan DA, asks “Why is it so hard to hold rich powerful predators responsible?” “Over 80 women have accused Harvey #Weinstein of sexual harassment, assault.” @wcbs880 pic.twitter.com/xtyXhQnDEB
— Marla Diamond (@MDiamond8) October 11, 2018
Ms. Evans was one of the first women to accuse Weinstein publicly of sexual assault. But it appears that a statement Ms. Evans gave to the New Yorker magazine contradicted what she told the NYPD and the grand jury. From ABC News:
Prosecutors disclosed in a sealed Sept. 12 letter to the defense that they discovered a previous written account from Evans that suggested the encounter was consensual.
Weinstein defense attorney Benjamin Brafman accused Evans of committing perjury when she testified to the grand jury.
“Sexual assault is a serious crime but falsely accusing someone of sexual assault is also a serious crime,” Brafman said outside court on Thursday.
Brafman said prosecutors discovered Evans’ written account about her encounter with Weinstein from a fact-checker with The New Yorker, and said he would subpoena the magazine.
We have no idea what prosecutors discovered, but we will note that Lucia Evans was in Ronan Farrow’s article that started all of this:
A year ago today, the New Yorker reported the first allegations of rape and sexual assault against Harvey Weinstein. 13 women I spoke to over the course of a 10 month investigation confronted fears for their safety and careers to make that story possible: https://t.co/7XKS6CotVP
— Ronan Farrow (@RonanFarrow) October 10, 2018
In that article, Farrow reported that Evans was raped:
Three of the women—among them Argento and a former aspiring actress named Lucia Evans—told me that Weinstein had raped them, forcibly performing or receiving oral sex or forcing vaginal sex. Four women said that they had experienced unwanted touching that could be classified as an assault. In an audio recording captured during a New York Police Department sting operation in 2015, Weinstein admits to groping a Filipina-Italian model named Ambra Battilana Gutierrez, describing it as behavior he is “used to.” Four of the women I interviewed cited encounters in which Weinstein exposed himself or masturbated in front of them.
But we’re not seeing anything in the article from Farrow that questioned Evans’ account:
Following the encounter, she met with the female casting executive, who sent her the scripts, and also came to one of her acting-class readings a few weeks later. (Evans does not believe that the executive was aware of Weinstein’s behavior.) Weinstein, Evans said, began calling her again late at night. She told me that the entire sequence of events had a routine quality. “It feels like a very streamlined process,” she said. “Female casting director, Harvey wants to meet. Everything was designed to make me feel comfortable before it happened. And then the shame in what happened was also designed to keep me quiet.”
Evans said that, after the incident, “I just put it in a part of my brain and closed the door.” She continued to blame herself for not fighting harder. “It was always my fault for not stopping him,” she said. “I had an eating problem for years. I was disgusted with myself. It’s funny, all these unrelated things I did to hurt myself because of this one thing.” Evans told friends some of what had happened, but felt largely unable to talk about it. “I ruined several really good relationships because of this. My schoolwork definitely suffered, and my roommates told me to go to a therapist because they thought I was going to kill myself.”
Weinstein’s attorney called the case “permanently and irreparably damaged,” and he just might be right:
— ABC News (@ABC) October 11, 2018
So, what else is wrong from Farrow’s article? This whole thing feels like it’s about to blow up, especially since the other main figure in the original reporting — Asia Argento — now faces sexual misconduct claims of her own:
PLOT TWIST: New report says alleged Harvey Weinstein victim Asia Argento paid off child actor who accused her of sexual assault https://t.co/14g5Nusdiv
— Twitchy Team (@TwitchyTeam) August 20, 2018
‘She admits it!’ Journo Jane Mayer spills the beans about her and Ronan Farrow’s anti-Kavanaugh crusade https://t.co/NcbVwfN4AT
— Twitchy Team (@TwitchyTeam) October 9, 2018
'So they're hacks': Journo Jane Mayer spills the beans about her and Ronan Farrow's anti-Kavanaugh crusade https://t.co/NcbVwfN4AT
— Twitchy Team (@TwitchyTeam) October 8, 2018
'You tried to destroy an innocent man': New witnesses from Ronan Farrow and Jane Mayer FALL FLAT https://t.co/BrYbjssCrZ
— Twitchy Team (@TwitchyTeam) October 4, 2018