The jury in Harvey Weinstein’s LA trial deadlocked Tuesday on two counts of conviction that could have led to a longer prison sentence for rape and assault.
Because the jurors could not reach a unanimous decision on those factors, Weinstein will not receive more than 18 years in prison in the LA case. Weinstein is already serving a 23-year sentence following his New York conviction in 2020.
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The LA jury convicted Weinstein on three charges on Monday and found that in February 2013 he raped a model at the Mr. C hotel. The prosecution asked the jury to approve two factors: that the victim was “particularly vulnerable” and the assault.
On each of the three counts, Weinstein risked a prison sentence of three, six or eight years. Under a California law that went into effect Jan. 1, a jury must approve “aggravating factors” so that the judge can sentence him to the maximum term — eight years — for each charge.
Had the jury agreed with the factors, Judge Lisa B. Lench could have sentenced him to 24 years in prison. Weinstein’s defense team asked to be sentenced as soon as possible and suggested January 9. No date has been officially set.
The victim — identified in court as Jane Doe #1 — testified that Weinstein broke into her hotel room after midnight and violently raped her over the bathroom sink.
Deputy District Attorney Paul Thompson argued Tuesday morning that she was particularly vulnerable because she was thousands of miles from her home in Italy, spoke limited English and had “very little support structure” in the US. He also argued that Weinstein had the upper hand because he had planned the attack and she was caught by surprise.
“She was surprised,” Thompson countered. ‘She didn’t intend to. She had to decide on the spot how to react.
Weinstein’s attorney, Mark Werksman, countered that Jane Doe #1 was no more vulnerable than the average rape victim — noting that she was physically fit and unaffected by alcohol or disability.
“She had a choice,” said Werksman. She didn’t have to open the door. She let him in because she thought she had the situation under control… What you have here is what it is. You sentenced him for that and nothing more.’
The Los Angeles jury acquitted Weinstein of one charge and was unable to rule on three other charges. The Public Prosecution Service has yet to decide whether it will try him again on those points.
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