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Recording barred in psych exam of Trump rape accuser

The former president and the writer E. Jean Carroll have entered a flurry of motions in the last weeks before their long-delayed trial.

MANHATTAN (CN) — Donald Trump may not record the mental health evaluations of the woman suing him for rape, nor can he force her to sign a “confusing and prejudicial” consent form, a federal judge ruled Thursday. 

In the same order, U.S. District Judge Lewis Kaplan denied separate requests by Trump's accuser, E. Jean Carroll, who has sought to pare down the battery of proposed evaluations, estimated to last 16 hours, and to limit Trump to one expert witness. 

“The court assumes that the defendant’s expert will administer only psychological tests that are appropriate to the purpose of the examination,” Kaplan wrote. 

Carroll had entered her filing less than 24 hours earlier, prompting a response from Trump that claimed she was trying to delay proceedings and get the court to “micromanage” which mental health tests she’ll be asked to take as the case heads to trial. Later on Thursday Trump also filed a motion asking to exclude from evidence the the "Access Hollywood" tape from 2005 in which Trump joked about women letting him sexually assault them because he is "a star."

Represented by attorney Roberta Kaplan, Carroll argued that recording mental examinations is generally not allowed, and that doing so would inhibit the process. She cited wording in the consent form that was “laden with inappropriate and confusing requests,” including a line stating that opinions from Trump’s experts “may help, harm, or have no bearing on my case.” 

“For an examinee with no background in expert testimony or psychological evaluations, this sends confusing signals about the neutrality of Trump’s experts,” Kaplan wrote in 4-page letter

Among the 40 examinations that Trump’s experts may administer to Carroll are those gauging daily functioning, cognitive ability including dementia, basic reading and math skills, and obsessive-compulsive disorder. The list includes the Montreal Cognitive Assessment Test — the same cognitive impairment and dementia screening Trump himself sat for in 2020 before bragging about his “good memory.” 

Trump described the test in July 2020 in an interview with Fox News. 

“Like a memory question," Trump said at the time. "It's like you'll go: Person, woman, man, camera, TV. So they say, ‘Could you repeat that?' So I said, ‘Yeah. So it's person, woman, man, camera, TV.’ OK, that's very good. If you get it in order, you get extra points.’”

Judge Kaplan called moot Carroll’s request that any examinations should directly address whether Carroll suffered emotional harm as a result of Trump's alleged attack, which Carroll says occurred in the 1990s in a fitting room of the Manhattan department store Bergdorf Goodman. 

Carroll had also asked the judge to ensure Trump cannot call a rebuttal expert to fish for diagnoses to support Trump’s comments that Carroll is “a very deranged, sick person” or a “wack job” who said things that “were frankly crazy.” 

It was Trump’s response to Carroll’s story, published in her July 2019 book “What Do We Need Men For? A Modest Proposal,” that formed the basis of a defamation lawsuit in Manhattan federal court that is now tied up in a District of Columbia appellate court. Thursday’s filing is part of a separate lawsuit directly accusing Trump of rape under a statute that gives abuse survivors a one-year window to file old claims. The civil rape case is set to go to trial in April. 

Categories:Entertainment, Health, Media, Trials

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