Massage therapist testifies Weinstein masturbated in front of her
Los Angeles, Nov 3 A licensed massage therapist sat in front of a jury to recount her graphic allegations of a series of instances in which Harvey Weinstein sexually assaulted and masturbated in front of her during business appointments.
Jane Doe #3 testified that the first time she ever worked with Weinstein as a client, he abruptly changed his friendly demeanour during a massage, cornering her in a hotel bathroom and masturbating in front of her, groping her breasts and yelling at her, reports Variety.
“He said: ‘Look at me, tell me how big my cock is. Look at me. Look at me. Fucking look at me,'” Jane Doe #3 testified, raising her voice on the stand, as to intimate the tone in which Weinstein spoke to her. As she started to tear up, she told the jury that she kept telling Weinstein “no” and “tried backing away from his as far as possible.” But he kept saying: “Look at my cock. Tell me how big my cock is.”
“I was terrified,” she said. “I thought I was about to get raped.”
Jane Doe #3 is a massage therapist for high-profile individuals, working almost exclusively with a clientele of A-list celebrities. She explained to the jury that, due to the nature of her job as a masseuse, it was typical to give a client a massage in a hotel room or in the privacy of their home where she would be isolated. Clients would often be nearly naked, wearing only a bathrobe, upon her arrival.
In 2010, when the woman arrived at Weinstein’s hotel room at the Montage in Beverly Hills, California, nothing seemed to be “peculiar odd,” she said. “I’ve done plenty of massages in hotel rooms.”
She said Weinstein was “very nice” and “very friendly” at the start of the hourlong massage that he had booked. Nothing was sexual in nature and she was “flattered” by his complimentary conversation to her massage technique. But then, after roughly 40 minutes, he abruptly ended the massage, which caught Jane Doe #3 off-guard. She explained that she then went to the hotel bathroom to wash her hands, planning to pack up her massage table and leave. It was then, she said, that Weinstein barged into the bathroom and attacked her.
As she was washing her hands, the bathroom door opened and “he was standing naked masturbating,” she recalled.
She then asked him to leave the bathroom and put his clothes on, but he yelled and demanded she look at his naked body and tell him “how big my cock is.”
As he was masturbating, Weinstein started walking towards her in a “very assertive manner.” With one hand on his penis, he put his other hand underneath her tank top and grabbed her breasts. She said it was so aggressive, it left a red mark on her chest.
“He just kept yelling at me,” she said, adding she told him to stop. “I told him to leave me alone.”
When the prosecutor, deputy D.A. Marlene Martinez, asked Jane Doe #3 if she tried to move away and escape Weinstein, she explained, “There was no physical way to get around him. It wasn’t possible because Harvey is so big.”
“I was in shock. I felt frozen. I felt paralysed. I was trying to understand what was about to happen to me,” she said. “I didn’t move. I thought if I tried to struggle, it would get worse.”
After he ejaculated on the floor, he said, “Now I know I can trust you, we’re close friends,” Jane Doe #3 recalled. “He kept saying, ‘We’re close friends now, you have full access to me. I want to get you a book deal to write about massage.'”
In a state of confusion and shock, Jane Doe #3 asked Weinstein: “Why did you do this to me?” She said that after he emerged from the bathroom, he kept “taunting me” by laughing while he was “flashing me” with his penis from underneath a towel, reports Variety.
During the massage – before his demeanour changed from “happy, calm, nice” to “angry, aggressive, assertive, scary” – Weinstein had brought up the idea of Jane Doe 3 writing a book through his publishing banner at The Weinstein Company. Jane Doe 3 was not a writer or an author; she said that she had never thought about writing a book.
After the assault, Weinstein demanded she give him her address so he could send her some books to read. She agreed to give him his address. Why?
Weinstein opened the door and his assistant, Barbara Schneeweiss, who had escorted Jane Doe #3 up to the room for the massage, was standing right outside, ready to escort the masseuse out and pay her for Weinstein’s service. Jane Doe #3 did not tell Schneeweiss what had happened because “something didn’t feel right” and she “didn’t feel comfortable.”
This assault was not the only incident between Weinstein and Jane Doe #3. On the stand, she went through a series of interactions where she agreed to see Weinstein again for a massage service. Each time, she felt “embarrassed” and “humiliated” because Weinstein would masturbate in front of her again and yell at her. She did not have a clear answer as to why she agreed to see him again, other than explaining to the jury, “I wanted to make sense of certain things that had happened… I wish I didn’t.”
While they remained in communication, Weinstein continued to tell Jane Doe #3 that he wanted to set her up with his publishing team for her to write a book about the art of massage. Every time Weinstein asked to book a massage appointment with her, she said she made clear to him that he needed to not act inappropriately.
“I told him I don’t feel comfortable,” she said. “He told me he wouldn’t do anything like that to me again.”
During the second massage appointment with Weinstein, Jane Doe #3 even set her cell phone to record, as a safety measure “in case anything happened to me.” She told jurors, “I did question him and tried to get his response on tape.”
After that second massage was over, she went to the bathroom to wash her hands; this time, she locked the door. When she came out to pack up her equipment, she said “he flashed me in his robe.” When she said, “Stop doing that. You told me you weren’t going to do that,” he laughed and kept doing it, she testified.
After the second incident, Jane Doe #3 said Weinstein would often text her, but she would ignore him or avoid him. But then, one day, Weinstein said he had an injury and needed her help with a massage and she agreed to see him. “I don’t know,” she told the jury, saying she was “naive.”
During that third massage appointment, Weinstein asked if he could masturbate in front of her. Jane Doe #3 explained to the jury that, at that point, she felt he was going to assault her either way, so she wanted to stay as safe as she possibly could because she was scared of being raped.
“I wanted to control the situation,” she said. “I said, ‘You are not allowed to touch me or lay a finger on me.'”
Her negotiation did not work.
Weinstein aggressively demanded she go to the bathroom where he masturbated and asked her, again, to “tell me how big my cock is.” Jane Doe #3 said she was scared. “He kept telling me to watch him because I wasn’t looking at him… Last time I didn’t tell him what he wanted, I was sexually assaulted.”
After that, she had no contact with Weinstein for at least a year. But later, she introduced her new boss to Weinstein, thinking she could make an impactful business connection. She went to the Peninsula Hotel with her male boss for a meeting with Weinstein, believing she would not be in a situation where she was alone with him.
Weinstein asked to speak to her alone. He took his pants off and masturbated in front of her again and asked her to take her top off. She said no and screamed, and he said, “‘We’re no longer friends.'” She then left the room and went downstairs and left.
“I put myself in a ridiculously stupid situation, a situation where I thought I’d be safe,” Jane Doe #3 said. “I was wrong.”
Jane Doe #3 did not speak of the incidents for years. When asked why she didn’t report to the police, she told the deputy D.A. that she was too humiliated to tell anyone, including her fiance.
“One of the reasons I didn’t want to come forward is because this is embarrassing,” Jane Doe 3 said. “I was ashamed, but I feel the whole truth had to come out.”
She also said she was scared of professional retaliation by Weinstein. “With his power and influence in the industry,” she said, “I would’ve been known as the massage therapist who can’t be alone with a client because I’ll press charges.”
Jane Doe #3 said she blames herself and wishes she did more. Part of her reason for coming forward was to help other women in similar situations, she told the jury.
“I felt that there were probably a lot of women in my situation that kept going back to the person that assaulted them or raped them,” she said. “I wanted them to be sure they knew they were not alone because I went back.”
While Jane Doe #3 kept the alleged assaults a secret and didn’t report to authorities for quite some time, she did tell one person: Mel Gibson. Gibson was a massage client of Jane Doe #3, who had become one of her friends.
“He was the first person that I had finally opened up to,” she said, crying on the stand. She said Gibson offered to help and asked if she wanted to call the police or find a lawyer. He eventually ended up connecting Jane Doe #3 to Allison Weiner, an investigative journalist and TV news producer, to whom she told her story during an off-the-record phone call in 2015, in an effort to ask for help.
Earlier on Wednesday, the prosecution also called on Nicky Whelan – an actor, known for the Australian soap opera “Neighbours” and “Halloween II,” which was distributed by The Weinstein Company in 2009. During her testimony, Whelan said was a former neighbour of Jane Doe #3 in Los Angeles and introduced her to Weinstein when he was looking for a massage therapist.
Gibson is on the witness list and is expected to testify, in connection with Jane Doe #3, in the coming days of the trial, which is planned to last a total of two months, going into December.
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