Published: Fri, January 24, 2020
Life&Culture | By Sue Mclaughlin

Annabella Sciorra recounts alleged Harvey Weinstein rape ordeal in court

Annabella Sciorra recounts alleged Harvey Weinstein rape ordeal in court

Hast accused Weinstein of treating Mann like a "rag doll" after raping her in her hotel room in March 2013. "He put my hands over my head to hold them back, and he got on top of me and he raped me".

"I was punching him".

"He had intercourse with me as I tried to fight, but I couldn't fight anymore because he had my hands locked", she told the NY jury of seven men and five women. But since the world watches the trial unfold, the shield will put forwards disproven myths about rape and attack in a bid to discredit them and their tales.

Ms Sciorra said she would never lie about something as serious as sexual assault.

The actress recounted her sexual assault ordeal at the hands of the fallen movie mogul in court on Thursday (January 23, 2020), during the ongoing Weinstein trial.

The movie mogul whose downfall gave rise to the #MeToo movement is charged with forcibly performing oral sex on former production assistant Mimi Haleyi in his NY apartment in 2006 and raping an aspiring actress in a hotel room in 2013. If convicted, Weinstein faces life behind bars for rape.

"At a certain point, he came out of me", Sciorra continued.

She said she met Mr Weinstein at an industry event in Los Angeles in 1990 or 1991. She said she got the part, but turned down the initial offer, which she said was "very low".

In going over the details of Sciorra's account, Rotunno raised questions about decisions she had made along the way, including why she had opened the door to Weinstein without finding out who it was first.

She said the rape happened in late 1993 or early 1994, after Weinstein dropped her off from a movie-business dinner and then appeared, unbidden, at her door a few minutes later. "I realized like if he was taking off his shirt that he wanted to have sex". She said he eventually left after she started frantically pushing buttons on the room phone to summon help.

"Despite saying, "'No, please, I can't' ... she simply froze, turning her head and trying mentally to erase the horror", according to Hast.

He allegedly yanked out her tampon and performed oral sex on her, leaving her "motionless like a dead fish". "And then it was just so disgusting that my body started to shake in a way that was very unusual".

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"I would say I felt at the time that rape was something that happened in a back alleyway in a dark place by somebody you didn't know", she said. "It was like a seizure or something".

But Weinstein managed to get to the 17th-floor apartment without a call up from her doorman and he forced his way inside, Sciorra told jurors.

In opening statements on Wednesday, another Weinstein lawyer, Damon Cheronis, argued the encounter was consensual, not rape, saying Sciorra once told a friend that she "did a insane thing and had sex with Harvey Weinstein". She testified that she began drinking and cutting herself, smearing her blood on to a wall.

"And he said, 'That's what the nice Catholic girls say.' Then he leaned into me and said, 'This remains between you and I.' It was very menacing, and his eyes went black and I thought he was going to hit me right there'".

Tuerkheimer observed that the way victims in the wake of their assaults behave is often paradoxical, even though juries might perceive certain actions as deceptive or dishonest.

She alleged that Weinstein arrived early one morning at her Cannes Film Festival hotel room, wearing only his underwear with body oil in one hand and a videotape in the other.

Rotunno, who began her cross-examination shortly before noon, repeatedly harped on the fact that Sciorra could not provide an exact date or time of the assault and picked at more intimate details of the alleged assault.

Her allegation is too old to be included on the charge sheet but the prosecution has called her as a witness to support a charge of predatory sexual assault. They also are expected to testify. Prosecutor Joan Illuzzi asked her if she could identify Weinstein.

Since two 2017 exposés presented a series of allegations of patterned sexual crimes against Weinstein, several women have come forth with their own testimonies against the 67-year-old.

During opening statements Wednesday, Assistant District Attorney Meghan Hast has told the jury Sciorra waited for decades before reporting the attack, for fear of retribution.

Hast said that the women kept in touch with Weinstein because they "felt trapped".

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