Harvey Weinstein found guilty on 3 of 7 charges in LA sex crimes trial
JUANA SUMMERS, HOST:
There is a verdict in the second sex crimes trial of Harvey Weinstein. The one-time movie mogul has been found guilty of rape again. The jury found Weinstein guilty on three of seven charges. They were unable to reach a verdict on three of the charges.
NPR's Mandalit del Barco has been covering the story and joins us now from Los Angeles. And as a note for listeners, this story will discuss sexual assault. Mandalit, what does this mean for Harvey Weinstein?
MANDALIT DEL BARCO, BYLINE: Well, hello. Hi. You know, it was a split vote by the LA jury of eight men and four women who were deliberating for 10 days. They convicted Weinstein of one count of full rape of a woman and two other sex crimes against her. They acquitted him of sexual battery of another woman, and they could not reach a unanimous verdict for two other counts, including charges by the wife of California's governor who accused him of raping her.
Now, Weinstein could face years of prison time in California in addition to the 23 years that he is already serving for rape and sexual assaults in New York. Weinstein is 70 years old, and his attorneys say he's not in great shape. So it's likely he'll spend the rest of his life in prison. But, you know, he's appealing that New York decision. So this verdict in Los Angeles could be the only way he stays behind bars.
SUMMERS: You have been covering this trial for weeks. What has it been like?
DEL BARCO: Well, you know, it's another high-profile court case for the former film mogul who was once a kingmaker, who helped guide movies and actors into winning Academy Awards. We saw Weinstein in court every day in a wheelchair. He was wearing a suit, not his prison gear. And just like in the New York trial, he did not testify here in Los Angeles. For more than a month, 50 witnesses gave very graphic testimonies of how Weinstein would lure women to private meetings in hotel rooms that quickly turned violent.
One of the - the hung - the decision that - on which they were hung was by the accuser, Jennifer Siebel Newsom, like I said, the California governor's wife. And during the trial, she told jurors about what she called her nightmarish encounters with Weinstein nearly 20 years ago when she was an aspiring actress and a filmmaker. She testified that Weinstein invited her to meet to discuss her career at a hotel in Beverly Hills. She described in detail how he shoved her onto a bed and raped her.
Other women, identified as Jane Doe, including a - included a licensed massage therapist and an actress and model who told jurors about an attack inside a London hotel. And one of the witnesses who testified during the LA trial was Italian model Ambra Battilana Gutierrez. You might remember that she reported that Weinstein had groped her. And for a sting operation in - for the New York police, she wore a wire to record a confrontation with him.
(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)
HARVEY WEINSTEIN: Please, I am not going to do anything. I swear on my children. Please, come in. On everything - I'm a famous guy.
AMBRA BATTILANA GUTIERREZ: I'm feeling very uncomfortable right now.
WEINSTEIN: Please come in now.
DEL BARCO: Now, the New York district attorney decided not to press charges, but that audio was a smoking gun for Ronan Farrow's expose in The New Yorker. And the recording was played during this trial.
DEL BARCO: During the trial, prosecutors characterized Weinstein as a degenerate rapist, a predator and a monster.
DEL BARCO: But throughout it all, Weinstein denied all the wrongdoing.
DEL BARCO: During the trial, his attorney...
SUMMERS: And Mandalit, unfortunately, we're going to have to leave it there.
DEL BARCO: Ah, sure.
SUMMERS: NPR correspondent Mandalit del Barco, thank you.
DEL BARCO: Thank you. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.