- E. Jean Carroll did not report the alleged rape of Donald Trump because she feared that her boss at the time had fired her.
- She was the host of a show on America’s Talking that was later hosted by Roger Ailes, who was a friend of Trump.
- He added that at the time he felt the assault was his fault and was worried about seeing himself as “dirty products.”
As I took the stand as a witness at his trial against former President Donald TrumpE. Jean Carroll testified that she did not report the alleged assault because her boss at the time, Roger Ailes, was a close friend of Trump’s and she thought he would have fired her.
Carroll sued Trump last year in Manhattan civil court: the allegations include one count of assault and one count of defamation after he repeatedly and publicly denied her claims in a 2019 essay for New York Magazine that he raped her in a Bergdorf Goodman dressing room in the mid-1990s. She first sued him in 2019 for defamation, but that case is on hold.
In denying Carroll’s story, Trump has said she was not his “type” and that she made up the story to sell more copies of her memoir. In an October 2022 post on Truth Social, he called it a “complete scam job” and a “hoax and lie.”
“I would never have reported something like this,” Carroll admitted in a midtown Manhattan courthouse on Wednesday.
“Roger Ailes would have fired me, he was a friend of Donald Trump. I would have lost my job at Elle. He would retaliate,” he said.
At the time of the assault, Carroll was the host of a television show called “Ask E. Jean,” named after her famous column for Elle magazine, on America’s Talking, a channel that would later become MSNBC and at the time it was run by Ailes. Carroll said Ailes got the idea for the show from her.
“I was embarrassed, I thought it was my fault. I knew how others would react,” Carroll said Tuesday of her decision not to report the alleged rape incident.
“Women who are raped are seen as dirty products,” he said. She added that she was worried that she was to blame for the incident.
Years later, in 2016, Ailes would resign from his position as executive director of Fox News after at least 20 women who worked with him in the network accused him of sexual harassment.
Carroll first accused Trump of raping her in a 2019 essay for New York magazine. In court on Wednesday, she said her meeting with Trump at Bergdorf Goodman started “joyful” and that Trump had asked her to help him choose a gift for a friend of hers. She admitted that she “was probably flirting the whole time.”
But the meeting quickly turned aggressive, Carroll alleged in the 2019 trial. Carroll said Trump assaulted her in a fitting room after asking her to try on a lacy bodysuit in the lingerie aisle.
“That open door [to the fitting room] it’s haunted me for years because I just went into it,” Carroll said Wednesday. “I didn’t want to make a scene. I know it sounds strange. I didn’t want him to be mad at me.”
She continued: “I always think about why I went in there to put myself in that situation. I’m proud to say I got out there. I got up on one knee and pushed him back.”
“It was a horrible feeling because it curled the finger,” Carroll recalled on the stand Wednesday. “As I sit here today, I can still feel it.”