NEW YORK — Donald Trump won’t present a defense case in a civil rape trial in Manhattan federal court, his lawyer said Wednesday.
Lawyers for the former president had been poised to call one witness in his defense — a psychiatrist — but that person proved unable to testify due to a medical issue, according to Trump lawyer Joe Tacopina.
Trump is being sued by E. Jean Carroll, a writer, for battery and defamation. Carroll alleges Trump raped her in a dressing room at luxury department store Bergdorf Goodman in the mid-1990s. Trump has denied the allegation, calling her claim a “hoax,” and saying it “never happened.”
Tacopina said earlier this week that Trump himself also won’t take the witness stand.
The former president hasn’t attended the trial, which began last week, but on Wednesday jurors did see a 20-minute portion of his videotaped deposition, recorded in October 2022.
On screen, Trump appeared somewhat sullen, answering questions with his arms folded on a table in front of him and his shoulders hunched. He called Carroll’s allegation “the most ridiculous, disgusting story.”
“It’s just made up,” he said.
On Wednesday, the jury also heard testimony from a clinical psychologist, Leslie Lebowitz; Carroll’s sister, Cande Carroll; and Natasha Stoynoff, a writer who has alleged Trump sexually assaulted her in 2005.
During Stoynoff’s testimony, jurors were shown a clip of the “Access Hollywood” tape, a recording from 2005 in which Trump boasts, “When you’re a star, they let you do it. You can do anything,” adding: “Grab them by the pussy. You can do anything.”
Carroll’s lawyers are expected to show another portion of the deposition to jurors Thursday.