In what would be Harvey Weinstein accuser Jane Doe 1’s final session on the stand Wednesday, defense attorney Alan Jackson continued to press the Italian actress and model on why she was posting flirty underwear selfies and other positive, flattering images in the days immediately after she says she was raped.
Much of defense attorney Alan Jackson’s cross focused on social media posts that Jane Doe 1 uploaded to either her Facebook or Instagram less than 24 hours after the alleged attack – photos of her with Al Pacino, Quentin Tarantino and other celebrities, including a selfie she took in the hotel bathroom 11 days after the alleged assault she described taking place there.
In the photograph, Jane Doe 1 is seen dressed in underwear, smiling in front of the mirror, revealing her abs and using hashtags that included #amazingbody, #perfectbody, #followme. However, she testified that this was “part of my job, my public life,” and that she had to act as if nothing had happened.
Jackson also tried to pin down her relationship to Pascale Vicedomini, head of the LA Italia Film Festival that was taking place in Beverly Hills at the tie of the assault.
Jackson was trying to establish that the woman, now in her third day on the stand in Weinstein’s Los Angeles rape trial, was in some kind of “relationship” with Vicedomini, displaying a series of Facebook messages between the two from Feb. 16, 2013, the day before she alleges Weinstein tracked her down at her hotel room uninvited and brazenly raped her. As read by Jackson:
Jane Doe 1: “I’m waiting for you”
Vicedomini: “On my way, love. It’s that I don’t know where to buy what you asked me for.”
Jane Doe 1: “You have to buy … Hurry up, there’s a surprise waiting for you.”
When asked about the word “love,” the witness testified the original messages were in Italian
– and that everyone uses the word; it does not necessarily imply a romantic relationship. Asked
what the “surprise” was, she responded, “I don’t remember.”
It wasn’t immediately clear why the defense was trying to get her to admit to a relationship, but the prosecution continually objected, preventing her from answering directly other than to say at one point that they were “close friends.”
Jackson spent much time trying to establish when Jane Doe 1 went to see a doctor following the alleged assault, and why there was no record of her doing so. She said she was unable to see a doctor in Los Angeles because she didn’t live here but that she did see a gynecologist when she returned to Italy, “for an STD test. I did exams because [Weinstein] didn’t use a condom.”
During pauses and short sidebars, the witness often placed her head down between her knees or inhaled deeply. When Jackson began asking her about earlier testimony when she said Weinstein had left his jacket in her room, she said, “I’m sorry, I need to take a break.”
Judge Lisa Lench called a ten-minute recess, and when testimony resumed Jackson asked if she
had received any documentation from hotel staff when she handed over the jacket to the front
desk. “No,” she said. Earlier she had expressed regret at not keeping the jacket as evidence.
Jackson also tried to pin her down on how she did not report the alleged assault until after the #metoo movement blew up in October 2017, intimating she had jumped on the bandwagon.
Thompson pushed back on Jackson attempting to lay the foundation he set out in his opening statement that the assault never happened; that she never even met with Weinstein that night, by asking her to look over her statements to police where she described Weinstein’s sexual organs and the abnormalities surrounding them.
When asked if she had ever heard before about Weinstein’s surgery and scars and his lack of testicles in the correct place, she responded, “no,” that the first she’d heard of this was in the courtroom.
In the final minutes of her testimony on redirect, when Thompson asked why she didn’t change rooms after the alleged assault by Harvey Weinstein at Mr C’s Hotel, she replied, “I was trying to deny to myself this happened. I remember cleaning the room and acting like nothing happened.” She said told herself, “I can’t say anything, I have to act like normal.”
Jackson had spent parts of his cross examination trying to have the witness establish the timeline of everything happening, and how long Weinstein was in her room. She kept repeating she had no recollection of how long.
When Thompson asked her on redirect to try and pinpoint the timeline, she said she got back from the restaurant at the festival after midnight, but had no idea what time it was. She said she felt from the time Weinstein entered her room, to the end of the alleged assault when he left, “was minimum one hour. For me it felt like the longest night of my life.”
With that, Jane Doe 1’s testimony was complete. The case resumes Thursday morning.
Harvey Weinstein’s lawyer clashed with rape accuser Jane Doe 1 in a fiery cross-examination session Wednesday, inferring that the Italian model and actress lied to police about the disgraced producer’s testicles, changed her testimony before a grand jury and was having a “relationship” with the head of the LA Italia Film Festival where the alleged assault took place.
Jane Doe 1 had already endured two days of graphic testimony, occasionally breaking down on the stand while telling how Weinstein – whom she knew only casually and “barely” spoke with that night – tracked down her hotel room, talked his way in and brazenly raped her despite her crying and vigorous protests.
Alan Jackson, attorney for Weinstein’s defense in the Los Angeles trial, spent much of Wednesday morning grilling Jane Doe 1 about Weinstein’s testicles – which by the time of the 2013 incident had been surgically relocated to the inner thighs. Jackson focused on discrepancies between what she told police after the alleged rape at the Mr. C hotel in Beverly Hills during LA Italia fest, and what she testified before a grand jury.
Jackson says she told police “that (Weinstein) specifically asked you to play with his balls?”
“It wasn’t just [the only] request … I was trying to do what he wanted,” she replied.
Jackson pressed her on that detail – saying she had told police that she put his testicles in her mouth, but not the grand jury.
“I cannot agree with that,” Jane Doe replied.
“You changed your testimony, didn’t you?” Jackson barked.
“Never!” Jane Doe retorted.
“You completely ommitted any reference to his testicles being in your mouth,” Jackson snapped back.
“In the grand jury they don’t let you talk, only answer question,” she parried.
Jackson tried to pick apart Jane Doe 1’s account of the day after the alleged rape, when she said she stayed her room all day drinking. When the lawyer noted that there was no alcohol on her hotel receipt, the witness said she doesn’t charge everything to her room.
“I love cash money,” she said, getting a smattering of laughs from the room.
Jackson tried then to get Jane Doe 1 to admit that she was seeing the head of the Italia film fest, Pascale Vicidomine. He inferred that she had spent a night in his suite, that she was his personal guest, and that she’d been getting rides in his limousine.
“You had a relationship with Pascale,” Jackson said.
That drew an objection from the prosecution, sparking a sidebar with the judge. After 15 minutes of quiet negotiating, the judge called a recess, telling the jury:
“We did a lot of work to try and ensure certain things didn’t happen … however, sometimes these things do because this is real life.”
Weinstein faces 11 charges of sexual assault from allegations spanning from 2004-2013. The trial is expected to last into December after a two-week jury selection process seated a panel last Thursday of nine men and three women. Weinstein could face up to 140 years in prison if convicted.
He is already serving 23 years in a New York prison for criminal first-degree sexual assault and third-degree rape, a conviction he has been granted the right to appeal. Weinstein has maintained his innocence since the New York Times first published accusations against him five years ago this month.