After deliberating for less than three hours, the jury in the E. Jean Carroll civil trial against Donald Trump has determined that the former president must pay the writer $83.3 million in damages for defaming her in 2019 when she came forward accusing him of sexually assaulting her in the 1990s.
Broken down, the jury determined Trump must pay $11 million in compensatory damages for a reputation repair program, $7.3 million in compensatory damages outside of the reputation program and $65 million in punitive damages.
Carroll was expected to request over $10 million in damages. During Friday’s closing arguments, Carroll’s lawyers showed the jury an estimate of how much she should be awarded according to a model created by Northwestern University professor Ashlee Humphreys, the same expert witness in Rudy Giuliani’s election worker defamation trial. Damages presented by Carroll’s team ranged from $7 million to $12 million, NBC News reported.
In a post on Truth Social Friday afternoon, Trump called the verdict “Absolutely ridiculous!” and said he plans to appeal the decision, while blaming Democrats for the Carroll lawsuits.
“THIS IS NOT AMERICAN!” he concluded.
The $83.3 million is in addition to the $5 million in damages a separate Manhattan jury awarded Carroll in May 2023 when the jury found Trump liable for sexually abusing and defaming Carroll — $2 million in damages for her civil battery claim and nearly $3 million for successfully proving her defamation claim against the former president. Today’s damages verdict is related to a separate lawsuit the writer filed against Trump for defaming her in 2019.
While the judge presiding over the case, U.S. District Judge Lewis Kaplan, is known for upholding a no-nonsense courtroom, Trump and his lawyer put the judge’s patience to the test. Kaplan reprimanded Trump repeatedly for speaking out of turn, ordered Trump’s lawyer Alina Habba to “sit down” on several occasions, struck a section of Trump’s minutes-long testimony from the record, threw one of Trump’s campaign officials out of the courtroom after an alarm went off on the aide’s phone and, during closing arguments, told Habba she was “on the verge of spending some time in the lockup” after she tried to enter social media posts into evidence at the last minute, CNN reported.
The final minutes of the trial before the jury went into deliberations were no different, according to reports from inside the courtroom. Trump and his lawyer showed up late and Trump walked out of the courtroom during closing arguments from Carroll’s team. Trump’s tantrum appeared to be in response to remarks from Carroll attorney Roberta Kaplan, who told the jury that Trump had “spent the entire trial continuing to engage in defamation,” referencing his courtroom outbursts and his chaotically aggressive social media posts about Carroll and the trial.
After Trump stormed out, Roberta Kaplan told the jury, “he thinks with his wealth and power he can treat Ms. Carroll how he wants and will suffer no consequences.”