Court Finds Harvey Weinstein Guilty of Rape

On Monday, a Los Angeles, Calif. jury found Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein guilty of rape and two counts of sexual assault against a European model and actor who testified anonymously as "Jane Doe 1."

Court Finds Harvey Weinstein Guilty of Rape

Facts

  • On Monday, a Los Angeles, Calif. jury found Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein guilty of rape and two counts of sexual assault against a European model and actor who testified anonymously as "Jane Doe 1."
  • After a month-long trial and nine days of deliberations, the jury acquitted the 70-year-old of sexual battery charges made by a fourth woman named "Jane Doe 3."
  • However, the jury could not reach verdicts on three charges of rape and sexual assault by two other accusers — "Jane Doe 2" and Jennifer Siebel Newsom, the wife of California governor Gavin Newsom. A mistrial was declared on those charges.
  • Shortly after the verdict, Jane Doe 1, who Weinstein reportedly raped at a Los Angeles hotel in February 2013, said the criminal trial was "brutal" and asserted, "I hope Weinstein never sees the outside of a prison cell during his lifetime."
  • Despite the court's inability to reach a unanimous verdict on her case, Newsom welcomed the verdicts calling Weinstein a serial predator and expressing relief that as she says he will spend the rest of his life behind bars, which she characterized as "where he belongs."
  • Weinstein is already serving a 23-year prison sentence for sex crimes in New York. The Academy Award winner faces up to an additional maximum of 18-24 years in prison when he is sentenced.

Sources: Al Jazeera, Reuters, BBC News, Deadline, and Guardian.

Narratives

  • Pro-establishment narrative, as provided by LA Times. With the guilty verdict of convicted sexual predator Harvey Weinstein, justice has been served. The #MeToo movement gained traction four years ago when the accusations of dozens of his victims told targets of sexual assault that they would be heard. Weinstein's guilty verdict shows that they can be believed and supported.
  • Establishment-critical narrative, as provided by SCMP. There needs to be more of a focus on preventing the kind of systemic abuse Weinstein got away with for so many years instead of just reacting to the verdict after the fact. Society still has a long way to go in not only prosecuting predators like Weinstein but also preventing workplace abuse from those in positions of power.