Harvey Weinstein Accuser Weighs Whether to Testify Again: ‘It Was Retraumatizing’

Miriam Haley, the key witness at Harvey Weinstein’s rape trial in New York, said Friday that she is weighing whether to testify again, after an appeals court on Thursday overturned his guilty verdict.

The Manhattan District Attorney’s Office has indicated that it will seek to retry the former producer, but a trial likely would not go forward without Haley’s participation.

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At a press conference with her attorney, Gloria Allred, Haley said she does not want to go through the ordeal of another trial, but recognized there are broader issues at stake.

“This isn’t just about me,” she said. “It’s a really important case. It’s in the public eye. It is difficult for me personally, but it is important for the collective.”

The Court of Appeals overturned Weinstein’s verdict on a 4-3 vote, finding that the trial judge, James Burke, erred by allowing testimony from three additional accusers whose allegations were not charged. Prosecutors would not be able to call such “Molineux” witnesses at a retrial.

Weinstein is due to appear in court in Manhattan on Wednesday. In a statement on Friday afternoon, the D.A.’s office said, “Our mission is to center survivors’ experiences and wellbeing in every decision we make, which we will do as we approach the next steps in this case.”

Haley said she believed Weinstein could still be convicted again even without the Molineux testimony.

“The truth doesn’t change,” she said Friday. “The evidence is still there. So I don’t see why it would be another result.”

Weinstein was sentenced to 23 years in prison in 2020, after being convicted of the rape and sexual assault of Haley and another victim, Jessica Mann. He was later convicted in Los Angeles of three additional rape charges, adding an additional 16 years to his sentence.

At the New York trial, Haley testified that Weinstein sexually assaulted her at his apartment in July 2006. On Friday, she said the testimony was more arduous than people realize, that it took two years of preparation, and that she endured harassment because of it.

“It was just rehashing and reliving over and over again,” she said Friday. “Especially after so many years, it was retraumatizing and grueling and exhausting… I definitely don’t want to actually go through that again. But for the sake of keeping going and doing the right thing, because it is what happened, I would consider it.”

She said that she felt “sick to my stomach” after hearing that the conviction was overturned, and was still processing her feelings about her next steps.

“People really don’t know what I had to go through and what the other women had to go through In preparation for this,” she said. “It’s insane.”

The Court of Appeals also overturned Burke’s ruling that would have allowed prosecutors to use 28 incidents of bullying or abusive behavior on cross-examination, had Weinstein taken the stand in his own defense. Weinstein’s lawyers have argued that the ruling effectively prevented Weinstein from defending himself. Without it, they indicated that he may testify at a retrial.

Weinstein’s lawyers are also appealing his Los Angeles conviction, and an appellate brief is due on May 20. The Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office has expressed confidence that the conviction will be upheld, in part because California’s evidence code explicitly allows additional accusers to testify in sex assault cases.

Allred said she will lobby for a similar law in New York.

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