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Woman Describes 2015 New York Police Sting on Harvey Weinstein After He Allegedly Grabbed Her Breast, Said She Looked Like Mila Kunis


Harvey Weinstein leaves New York City Criminal Court on January 16, 2020 in New York City.

Jurors in disgraced movie producer Harvey Weinstein’s sexual assault trial in Los Angeles heard a conversation between him and a young woman surreptitiously recorded as part of a New York police sting in 2015.

Identified in court by her first name and last initial, the woman said Tuesday that she met Weinstein during an afterparty for a spring show at Radio City Music Hall. Weinstein told her she looked like the actress Mila Kunis, whose That ’70s Show co-star Danny Masterson is coincidentally on trial in a courtroom down the hallway.

She didn’t know who Kunis was, nor did she recognize Weinstein: Her agent is the one who told her Weinstein had produced the show she just watched. She saw him the next day at the Tribeca Film Center, where she said he grabbed one of her breasts after asking if they were real.

“I hesitated at first, then I said yes,” the woman said. “It was weird, because nobody ever asked. Even if it’s not, you don’t ask. Then he said, ‘Are you sure?’ and he just grabbed me on my breast.”

The woman said she was “just shocked.”

“The moment that he started trying to ask me for a kiss is when I reacted and pushed back,” she said. “He was putting his hand on my leg and was repeating, ‘Just give me a kiss.'”

Weinstein apologized, she said, and moved away from her. She ended up telling Robbie Hoffman from the agency representing her what had happened, but Hoffman was “really against” her going to the police.

“He said, ‘Are you sure? You know this person, who he is, what he can do to you?'” the woman said.

But she reported Weinstein to police, anyway, and the ensuing investigation led to an undercover operation at what’s now the The Roxy hotel in the Tribeca neighborhood of lower Manhattan.

The operation included an officer posing as a reporter for the celebrity gossip website TMZ, captured in the surreptitious recording on the woman’s iPhone telling Weinstein he was a journalist as Weinstein tried to get the woman into his hotel room. Surveillance cameras throughout the hotel also recorded some of the woman’s interactions with Weinstein, and jurors heard and saw much of it as Deputy District Attorney Paul Thompson asked her about the investigation.

It started with an email. She didn’t have Weinstein’s number, so she emailed him asking her to call her. He did so right away, and she ended up at an afternoon matinée for Finding Neverland, then met him at the Tribeca Grand restaurant and hotel, which is now The Roxy. Police gave her recording equipment, and investigators were stationed throughout the building.

In one conversation played for jurors, Weinstein tells the woman, “I don’t want to be aggressive with you.” When she expressed concern about the appearance of her breasts and Weinstein’s question about their realness, he replied, “Honey, honey, they feel beautiful, OK?”

The woman testified that police instructed her to ask Weinstein about her breasts to try to get him to confess to groping her. As they continued discussing the entertainment industry, Weinstein said apparently unprompted, “Are we gonna go upstairs to my room? Because I have to go upstairs to go dress for the show.”

The woman said she didn’t want to go, but Weinstein suggested a “massage, something nice” and maybe he’ll shower and “we’ll just talk a little bit.” Jurors heard part of an audio recording that The New Yorker obtained in 2017, in which Weinstein tells the woman, “I’m telling you right now, get in here.”

He said he would shower and “you sit there and have a drink.” She said she doesn’t drink, and he suggested having a glass of water. As she repeatedly declined, Weinstein said, “I’m not doing anything with you, I promise. Now you’re embarrassing me.” The woman said “yesterday was kind of aggressive for me” and that she needs “to know a person to be touched.”

Weinstein again said he “won’t do a thing…I swear I won’t.”

“Just sit with me. Don’t embarrass me in the hotel. I’m here all the time. Sit with me,” he said. She repeatedly said she doesn’t want to, and Weinstein tells her, “Honey, don’t have a fight with me in the hallway.”

“Please. I’m not gonna do anything. I swear on my children. Please come in. On everything. I’m a famous guy,” Weinstein said.

The woman asked why he touched her breast yesterday, and Weinstein replies, “Oh, please. I’m sorry. Just come on in. I’m used to that.” She says she’s “not used to that” and Weinstein says, “I won’t do it again.” He also said, “Don’t ruin your friendship with me for five minutes.”

She never ended up going into the room and instead joined Weinstein at the hotel bar for a drink, then went to the bathroom and never returned.

On cross, Weinstein’s lawyer Alan Jackson emphasized that all the recordings and video are about an underlying incident in which “Mr. Weinstein touched your breast one time. For one second.”

“I don’t know if it was one second. It felt a lot longer. It felt like an eternity,” the woman answered.

[Image: Photo by Scott Heins/Getty Images]

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A graduate of the University of Oregon, Meghann worked at The Spokesman-Review in Spokane, Washington, and the Idaho Statesman in Boise, Idaho, before moving to California in 2013 to work at the Orange County Register. She spent four years as a litigation reporter for the Los Angeles Daily Journal and one year as a California-based editor and reporter for and associated publications such as The National Law Journal and New York Law Journal before joining Law & Crime News. Meghann has written for The Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, The New York Times, Los Angeles Magazine, Bloomberg Law, ABA Journal, The Forward, Los Angeles Business Journal and the Laguna Beach Independent. Her Twitter coverage of federal court hearings in a lawsuit over homelessness in Los Angeles placed 1st in the Los Angeles Press Club's Southern California Journalism Awards for Best Use of Social Media by an Independent Journalist in 2021. An article she freelanced for Los Angeles Times Community News about a debate among federal judges regarding the safety of jury trials during COVID also placed 1st in the Orange County Press Club Awards for Best Pandemic News Story in 2021.