Jessica Leeds testified Tuesday about how Donald Trump seemingly used “40 zillion hands” to grope her during a flight in the 1970s. Leeds was called to testify in the civil trial underway in New York that stems from a lawsuit by author E. Jean Carroll, the former magazine columnist who alleges Trump raped her in a dressing room at a department store in the 1990s.
Carroll can file the rape and defamation case against Trump decades later because New York opened a one-year window on the statute of limitations for adult survivors of sexual assault. The judge ruled Leeds and another women can take the stand as Carroll’s lawyers argue Trump has a history of assaulting women. The judge also warned Trump could face jury tampering charges for his social media posts calling the case a “made-up SCAM.”
Trump tried to claim ”FAKE NEWS!” in 2017, when 16 women who had publicly accused Trump of sexual harassment came forward to demand Congress take action. We spoke then with Leeds, a retired stockbroker, mother of two, and grandmother of eight, who says women started contacting her after she came forward to tell her story.
“So, the thing that I found, for myself, comforting was the fact that the stories were basically similar,” Leeds said of the women who were speaking out.
Watch our 2017 interview with Leeds, and also her response in 2018 to Trump calling her story “phony.”
“I’m, frankly, of the opinion, especially with Trump and his age, because men like that, that, for them, it means nothing. It’s like scratching an itch. It means nothing. They forget about it two seconds after it’s happened. And women don’t,” Leeds said.