Judge Sends Trump To Trial To Decide How Much More He’ll Need To Pay E. Jean Carroll


Federal Judge Lewis Kaplan has issued a summary judgment against ex-President Donald Trump in a remaining defamation dispute originating with writer E. Jean Carroll.

She first challenged the former president after the sprawling denials he made while still in office in response to her claims that he sexually assaulted her — claims that have been in significant part, in the form of a finding of sexual abuse, supported by a jury. The summary judgment relates to the earlier challenge from Carroll, generally applying principles of the jury’s findings in the trial on her latter case here. The second case from Carroll — the one already decided at trial — again included allegations against Trump of defamation.

“The matter now is before the Court on the parties’ competing motions with respect to the issue preclusive (or “collateral estoppel”) effect of the jury’s verdict in Carroll II in this action,” Kaplan wrote. “Ms. Carroll argues also that she is entitled to summary judgment on each liability element of her defamation claim in Carroll I. She accordingly contends that the trial in this case need address only the issue of damages.”

The judge’s numerical designations refer to the order of Carroll’s court challenges against Trump, which eventually included civil claims directly covering the sexual abuse that she has said she suffered. Kaplan broadly accepted Carroll’s arguments, deciding that the upcoming trial in federal court on remaining allegations from Carroll of defamation will only cover the level of financial damages to impose upon former President Donald Trump, meaning the costs he’ll pay.

It’s an outcome similar to what recently befell Trump ally Rudy Giuliani in a defamation case from former Georgia election workers who Giuliani and others named in debunked conspiracy theories about widespread fraud. Amid extensive failures from Giuliani to comply with what’s known as the discovery process, a federal judge issued a summary judgment in favor of the plaintiffs and sent the case to trial to determine the level of financial penalty for Trump’s ally.