Harvey Weinstein Found Guilty of Rape in Watershed #MeToo Trial

Harvey Weinstein was found guilty of rape more than two years after dozens of allegations against him ushered in the #MeToo movement.

Hollywood’s Sexual Misconduct Scandals

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The disgraced movie mogul’s trial ended on Monday, February 24, with a jury of seven men and five women convicting him on two of five counts: criminal sexual act in the first degree and rape in the third degree. He was acquitted on the most serious count of predatory sexual assault, which could have resulted in a life sentence.

The judge remanded Weinstein, 67, into custody, where he will remain without bail until his sentencing hearing on March 11. He left court in handcuffs.

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Harvey Weinstein Erik Pendzich/Shutterstock

The news came three days after the jury indicated that its members were deadlocked, asking Judge James Burke in a note if it would be OK for them to be hung on the two most severe charges while reaching a unanimous verdict on the others. The judge ordered the jury to continue deliberating before sending them home for the weekend.

Weinstein was charged with raping actress Jessica Mann in a New York City hotel room in 2013 and forcibly performing oral sex on former production assistant Miriam Haley in 2006. He did not testify during the trial, but pleaded not guilty and has long maintained that the encounters were consensual.

Stars at Court

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Six women took the stand and testified against that the Oscar winner, although he only faced charges for the incidents with Mann and Haley. The judge allowed the other women to share their stories so that prosectors could establish a pattern of behavior.

One of Weinstein’s lawyers, Donna Rotunno, said during closing arguments on February 13 that her client was a victim of an “overzealous prosecution” and claimed his accusers used him “for jobs.”

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Harvey Weinstein arrives for his trial at New York State Supreme Court on February 13, 2020. PETER FOLEY/EPA-EFE/Shutterstock

The New York Times was the first to report on the Shakespeare in Love producer’s inappropriate behavior in October 2017. The New Yorker subsequently published a damning exposé with allegations from actress including Asia Argento, Mira Sorvino and Rosanna Arquette. Later on, Angelina Jolie and Gwyneth Paltrow came forward with additional accusations of harassment. In total, nearly 100 women have made claims.

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Weinstein’s wife of nearly 10 years, Georgina Chapman, left him in the wake of the scandal. He and the Marchesa fashion designer share daughter India, 9, and son Dashiell, 6. He is also the father of daughters Lily, 24, Emma, 22, and Ruth, 17, with his first wife, Eve Chilton.

“It was difficult because the first article was about a time long before I’d ever met him, so there was a minute where I couldn’t make an informed decision. And then the stories expanded and I realized that this wasn’t an isolated incident,” Chapman, 43, told Vogue in May 2018. “And I knew that I needed to step away and take the kids out of here.”

If you or anyone you know has been sexually abused, call the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673). A trained staff member will provide confidential, judgment-free support as well as local resources to assist in healing, recovering and more.

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