E. Jean Carroll first defamation case survives Trump appeal’ Author E. Jean Carroll’s first defamation case against former President Donald Trump survived on Thursday, after a D.C.-based appellate court declined to resolve the question of his immunity.
In 2019, Trump told reporters that Carroll wasn’t his “type” when asked about her accusations that he raped her in the dressing room of a Bergdorf Goodman in the mid-1990s. Carroll sued Trump shortly after that, and Trump claimed that he was absolutely immune from that lawsuit as a then-sitting president.
E. Jean Carroll first defamation case survives Trump appeal
That position instigated a protracted legal battle. Trump lost at the trial court level, before securing a partial victory on appeal. The Second Circuit found that Trump was an “employee” of the U.S. government, but the appellate court punted a separate question to the D.C. Court of Appeals.
That question is whether Trump acted in his official capacity when he allegedly defamed Carroll.
On Thursday, an eight-judge panel of the D.C. Court of Appeals would not provide a firm resolution.
“Under the law of the District of Columbia, and on the record before us, whether the President of the United States was acting within the scope of his employment is a question for the factfinder,” they wrote in a 52-page opinion.