Harvey Weinstein Arrested, Charged With Rape And Sex Abuse

Harvey Weinstein‘s day of reckoning has come.

Around 7:30 a.m., the producer surrendered to authorities at the New York Police Department’s 1st Precinct, where was fingerprinted and photographed. Just before 8:30 a.m., he was charged with rape, a criminal sex act, sex abuse and sexual misconduct for incidents involving two separate women. “The NYPD thanks these brave survivors for their courage to come forward and seek justice,” a spokesperson said. “The arrest and ensuing charges are the result of a joint investigation between the NYPD and the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office.” He was transported to New York County Criminal Court at 8:55 a.m.; two sources told NBC News he is expected to be released on $1 million bail and required to wear an ankle monitor.

A smiling Weinstein, wearing a blue sweater and a black blazer, ignored reporters’ questions when he first showed up to turn himself in. He was seen carrying three books, including Elia Kazan: A Biography and Something Wonderful: Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Broadway Revolution.

Several sources familiar with the investigation tell NBC News the rape charges stem from a complaint made by an anonymous woman. The sex abuse charges stem from a complaint from Lucia Evans, who told The New Yorker in an interview published Thursday, “At a certain point, you have to think about the greater good of humanity, of womankind.” Initially hesitant to press charges, she later changed her mind. “They said that if I do nothing, Harvey would walk.”

Last fall, Evans went public with claims that Weinstein had sexually assaulted her in his office in 2004. “He forced me to perform oral sex on him. I said, over and over, ‘I don’t want to do this. Stop. Don’t,” she told Farrow. But Weinstein is a “big guy,” Evans noted. “He overpowered me.”

At Weinstein’s arraignment, Judge Kevin McGrath set bond at $10 million, meaning the disgraced producer has to pay $1 million today. As part of the agreement, Weinstein turned in his passport, and acknowledged he needs consent to travel outside of Connecticut and New York (where he owns separate properties). “This defendant used his position, money and power to lure young women into situations where he could violate them sexually,” prosecutor Joan Illuzzi told the judge. Weinstein, standing next to his attorney Ben Brafman, did not speak during the proceeding. “Today’s charges reflect significant progress in this active, ongoing investigation,” District Attorney Cyrus Vance, Jr. said. “I thank the brave survivors who have come forward, and my office’s prosecutors who have worked tirelessly on this investigation. I would also like to thank Commissioner James O’Neill and our dedicated partners at the NYPD.”

People with relevant information are urged to call the Sex Crimes Hotline at 212-335-9373. Rape in the first degree is a Class B felony, carrying a maximum sentence of 25 years in prison.

Twin exposés, from The New York TimesJodi Kantor and Megan Twohey and from The New Yorker‘s Ronan Farrow, helped many of his accusers tell their story on the record for the first time. Nearly 100 women have since accused Weinstein of sexual harassment—and, in some cases, rape. The once untouchable Weinstein, through his legal team, has denied all allegations.

Rose McGowan, who reached a $100,000 settlement with Weinstein related to an encounter in 1997, issued a statement about the news Thursday, after it was first reported he would be turning himself in to authorities. “I, and so many of Harvey Weinstein’s survivors, had given up hope that our rapist would be held accountable by law. Twenty years ago, I swore that I would right this wrong,” she said. “Today we are one step closer to justice. We were young women who were assaulted by Weinstein and later terrorized by his vast network of complicity.”

“I stand with my fellow survivors,” added McGowan, who spoke with Farrow for his initial article. “May this give hope to all victims and survivors everywhere that are telling their truths.”

Some of Weinstein’s more prominent accusers include Rosanna Arquette, Salma Hayek, Angelina Jolie, Ashley Judd, Lupita Nyong’o, Gwyneth Paltrow, Mira Sorvino and Uma Thurman. “Today Harvey Weinstein will take his first step on his inevitable descent to hell,” Asia Argento, another accuser, tweeted. “We, the women, finally have real hope for justice.”

“To see him in cuffs on his way out—whether he smiled or not—that’s a very good feeling,” McGowan said on Megyn Kelly TODAY, just after he was transported to New York County Criminal Court. After feeling gaslighted, she admitted, “I didn’t believe this day would come…”

Weinstein’s attorney declined to comment on the matter Thursday. In a court declaration earlier this month, he wrote, “Mr. Weinstein is currently in treatment for personal issues in the hope of becoming a better person and one day soon hopefully restoring his life and again continuing the pursuit of the extraordinary charity that he has always engaged in. Weinstein vigorously denies ever engaging in criminal sexual misconduct and if given the opportunity to fully defend himself, he believes that all of these allegations will be shown to be without merit.”

Five days after the first report about Weinstein came out, Marchesa’s Georgina Chapman, his wife of nearly 10 years, left him. The couple’s divorce was finalized a few months later, and Chapman—who has two children with him—received a reported settlement of $15-20 million.

As Chapman later told Vogue, “I had what I thought was a very happy marriage.” The fashion designer insisted she was “never” suspicious about his behavior, calling him a “confidante,” a “friend, a “supporter” and a “wonderful partner.” But as more women made claims against him, she realized, “There was a part of me that was terribly naïve—clearly, so naïve. I have moments of rage. I have moments of confusion. I have moments of disbelief!” Feeling “broken” and “humiliated,” she fled to London with her children. “It’s still so very, very raw. I was walking up the stairs the other day and I stopped; it was like all the air had been punched out of my lungs.”

After the accusations against Weinstein were first published in October 2017, thousands of people felt empowered to share their own stories through the #MeToo movement on social media. Three months later, Hollywood’s biggest stars banded together to launch Time’s Up, with an intent to prevent further sexual assault, harassment and inequality in the workplace.

Weinstein was fired last year from his production company, which later filed for bankruptcy.

(E! and NBC News are both members of the NBCUniversal family.)

(Originally published on Friday, May 25, 2018, at 4:35 a.m. PDT.)

Sumber: http://www.eonline.com

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