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President Trump on Friday denied that he sexually assaulted writer E. Jean Carroll after the longtime advice columnist accused the president of raping her in a department store dressing room in the 1990s.

“False accusations diminish the severity of real assault. All should condemn false accusations and any actual assault in the strongest possible terms,” Trump said.

Trump asserted in a statement that he’d never met Carroll and accused her of making the allegation to boost sales for her book. Trump further suggested that Carroll’s claim may be politically motivated.

{mosads}“If anyone has information that the Democratic Party is working with Ms. Carroll or New York Magazine, please notify us as soon as possible,” he continued. “The world should know what’s really going on. It is a disgrace and people should pay dearly for such false accusations.”

Trump likened Carroll’s allegations to those of Julie Swetnick, a woman who made uncorroborated claims about Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh during his nomination last year. 

Swetnick came forward after two other women accused Kavanaugh of sexual misconduct. She was later referred to the Justice Department for an investigation into whether she made false statements to Congress.

Carroll’s account of the alleged incident was detailed in an excerpt of her forthcoming book published Friday afternoon in New York magazine. The excerpt included a photo that identified Carroll, Trump, his then-wife Ivana Trump and Carroll’s then-husband, John Johnson, attending the same party around 1987.

The writer, who has served as a longtime advice columnist for Elle magazine, alleged that she ran into Trump while she was at Bergdorf Goodman in New York City the fall of 1995 or spring of 1996. The two recognized each other and Trump asked her for advice on purchasing a gift for a woman, according to Carroll.

After she suggested buying a handbag or a hat, Carroll claimed that Trump turned his attention to lingerie. The two quipped back and forth that the other should try the clothing on before they eventually made their way to the dressing room, she said.

Once inside, Carroll alleged that Trump lunged at her, pushed her against a wall and kissed her before pulling down her tights.

“I am astonished by what I’m about to write: I keep laughing,” Carroll wrote in the book. “The next moment, still wearing correct business attire, shirt, tie, suit jacket, overcoat, he opens the overcoat, unzips his pants, and, forcing his fingers around my private area, thrusts his penis halfway — or completely, I’m not certain — inside me.”

Carroll wrote that she fought Trump off and then ran out of the dressing room. The incident lasted about three minutes, she said.

Explaining why she didn’t come forward until now, Carroll wrote about the retribution and dismissal she expected to receive and called herself “a coward.”

Trump criticized New York magazine for publishing the account despite a lack of evidence, calling it a “dying publication” that is “peddling fake news.”  He noted that there were no pictures, surveillance video, reports or sales attendants to document the incident.

Carroll addressed each of those points in her recounting of the episode.

She wrote that she did not go to the police; that she told two friends at the time; that Bergdorf Goodman confirmed it no longer has tapes from the time of the incident; and that she did not see an attendant near the dressing room despite the store’s reputation for being well staffed.

In publishing her account, Carroll joined more than a dozen other women who have accused Trump of sexual misconduct since he launched his presidential campaign in 2015. The alleged incidents have spanned decades. Tape emerged in 2016 of Trump bragging on the set of “Access Hollywood” in 2005 about groping women without their consent.

Trump has vehemently denied all allegations of sexual misconduct, and the White House has said that the women accusing him are lying.

Tags Brett Kavanaugh Donald Trump Sexual assault
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