In a case that is sure to elicit strong opinions, a New York jury has awarded writer E. Jean Carroll a whopping $83 million in damages in her defamation suit against former President Donald Trump. Carroll, who alleged that Trump sexually abused her in the 1990s, first filed a civil suit against him last spring. However, Trump denied the allegations, stating that he doesn’t even know Carroll.
New York Jury Issues $83M Damages Verdict In Trump, E. Jean Carroll Defamation Suit
The amount was much more than Carroll was seeking. https://t.co/rQ4WLm4t9i
— Randy DeSoto (@RandyDeSoto) January 26, 2024
Nevertheless, Carroll went on to sue him again in federal court, arguing that he had defamed her in his reactions to last year’s ruling, including calling her a “whack job.” The jury’s award to Carroll includes $11 million for damage to her reputation, $7.3 million for emotional harm and other damages, and a staggering $65 million in punitive damages. It’s safe to say this verdict didn’t go in Trump’s favor.
The jury returned its verdict after just under three hours of deliberations. According to The New York Times, Carroll had been seeking at least $10 million in damages. However, during closing arguments, her lawyer, Roberta Kaplan, asked the jury for at least $24 million in compensatory damages and “lots and lots of money” in punitive damages to, in her words, stop Trump from continuing to defame her. Interestingly, 89 percent of voters in a public poll didn’t think Trump was treated fairly.
In his closing argument, Trump’s attorney, Alina Habba, argued that Carroll should receive no damages at all because she had actively sought attention and comments. These arguments came after Trump himself was given the opportunity to testify in his defense. When asked whether he still stood by his previous remarks calling Carroll a liar, Trump answered with a resounding “One hundred percent, yes,” categorizing her allegations as false.
Following the verdict, Habba expressed her dissatisfaction with the trial, stating that the judge had decided to disallow every defense raised by President Trump. Trump himself took to Truth Social to voice his disagreement with the verdict, calling it “absolutely ridiculous” and vowing to appeal it. He also criticized the legal system, claiming that it was being used as a political weapon. It seems that this case is far from over and will continue to be a contentious and heavily debated topic in the coming months.