On Monday, Harvey Weinstein was found guilty of 1st-degree criminal sexual acts and 3rd-degree rape in New York. The verdict comes after a protracted criminal trial in which six women had testified against the disgraced Hollywood film producer on a total of five felony charges. Although he was convicted on two counts, the former movie mogul was also acquitted on three other, more serious charges.
Following the announcement of the verdicts, Weinstein was remanded into custody until a sentencing hearing scheduled for 11th March, where the charges he was convicted of could land him up to 25 years in prison.
Separate from the criminal charges he faced in court, Weinstein had been accused of sexual misconduct in some form by at least 100 women, spurring the #MeToo movement in the fall of 2017 that forced Hollywood to reckon with a gendered power imbalance and a culture of rampant sexual harassment. In the wake of the news, many of his accusers — and allies to survivors — reacted on social media to the news of Weinstein’s conviction, though he was not found guilty on all charges.
The complexities of each charge are vast, and involved harrowing testimonies from women who accused Harvey Weinstein of rape and sexual assault. Below, we’ve detailed every charge against Weinstein, what they mean, and what each verdict was.
Count 1: Predatory sexual assault
Predatory sexual assault charges are handed down in combination with charges of rape or criminal sexual act in the first degree. Although six women testified before the jury, the statute of limitations allowed for only five official charges for Weinstein stemming from accusations made by two women in particular: Miriam Haley and Jessica Mann. For each of the two more serious charges of predatory sexual assault that Weinstein faced, a third woman, former Sopranos actress Annabella Sciorra, also took the stand to help prosecutors establish that Weinstein had committed prior sex crimes in the same vein. This amounted to the charge of predatory sexual assault, which Weinstein was not held accountable for in the final verdict.
Verdict: Not Guilty.
Charge 2: Criminal sexual act in the first degree
Weinstein was found guilty of criminal sexual acts in the first degree, which is levied when a person forces a victim to engage in either oral or anal sexual conduct. The charges stemmed from accusations made by TV and film production assistant Miriam Haley, who had testified that Weinstein forced her to perform oral sex on him at his New York City apartment in 2006. “I rejected him, but he insisted,” Haley told jurors. “Every time I tried to get off the bed, he would push me back and hold me down. He pushed me down, he held me down by my arms. At that point, I started realizing what was actually happening.”
Charge 3: Predatory sexual assault
Weinstein was also found not guilty on a second count of predatory sexual assault made by former actress Jessica Mann. When she took the stand to address jurors for the first time on 3rd February, Mann collapsed into tears and began hyperventilating before being escorted from the New York City courtroom. Mann’s experience had made for a thorny case for prosecutors, as her relationship with Weinstein had reportedly involved consensual sex separate from the rape allegations she had made against him.
Verdict: Not Guilty.
Charge 4: Rape in the first degree
Weinstein was also cleared on the more serious charge of rape in the first degree on Monday — a count that would have carried with it a potential maximum sentence of 25 years in prison. Rape in the first degree is established when a person engages in intercourse with another person by “forcible compulsion” through the use of physical force or threats. The charge was brought on by Weinstein’s encounter with Jessica Mann, as detailed above.
Verdict: Not Guilty.
Charge 5: Rape in the third degree
On a separate charge of rape in the third degree — which is established when a person engages in sexual intercourse without first receiving proper consent — Weinstein was found guilty. This charge was also brought on by Jessica Mann, and the verdict will require him to register as a sex offender for the rest of his life.
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