'Disaster': Expert says Trump's prospects have gone from 'bad to worse' as E. Jean Carroll trial wraps up
The prospect of Donald Trump walking away unscathed from a Manhattan courtroom where he is facing accusations of rape and defamation lodged by writer E. Jean Carroll took a decided bad turn on Wednesday, reports a former federal prosecutor.
Writing for the Daily Beast, attorney Mitchell Epner claimed the trial has gone from "bad to worse" as the trial has proceeded and the former president's lawyers have failed to impeach the testimony of Carroll or her witnesses.
According to Epner, the trial so far has been a string of "disasters" for Trump and his attorneys as it wraps up and is expected to go to the jury next week after a day off on Friday.
Writing, "Carroll’s attorneys presented compelling testimony from an expert psychologist, who testified to the mental toll that Carroll has suffered as a result of the alleged rape," he added, "To make matters worse, Trump’s attorneys announced to the Court that their lone remaining proposed witness would not testify at trial. This leaves Trump with no witnesses and no evidence that he is offering at the trial. Rather, Trump is relying upon cross-examination of Carroll’s witnesses - which (once again) went badly on Wednesday."
Epner pointed to testimony by former People reporter Natasha Stoynoff who described being sexually assaulted at Mar-a-Lago by Trump, with her testimony being bolstered by excerpts from the "Access Hollywood" tape while she was on the stand, and according to the former prosecutor, "Trump’s lead counsel, Joseph Tacopina, did not even attempt to meaningfully cross-examine Stoynoff. He only asked her to confirm that she had not made any legal claim against Trump."
Noting closing arguments are scheduled for next Monday, Epner wrote, "I give the final word to noted attorney Ken White (my law school classmate), who encapsulated Trump’s strategy: 'I suspect the vibe they are going for is the old "The plaintiff’s case is such nonsense that no response is appropriate or required." That’s a way to focus a jury on the prosecution’s heavy burden of proving things beyond a reasonable doubt, but it’s a very risky move in a civil case, where the burden is only preponderance of the evidence and a much broader expectation that the defense will present some evidence.”
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