E. Jean Carroll in the New York State Supreme Court on March, 4, 2020.
Alec Tabak | Tribune News Service | Getty Images
A New York federal judge on Wednesday rejected a conditional offer by former President Donald Trump to provide a DNA sample in a lawsuit accusing him of raping a writer in a Manhattan department store in the 1990s.
Judge Lewis Kaplan said that Trump’s offer, which came after years of litigation in E. Jean Carroll’s suit, was too late, coming after the end of the process for exchanging evidence in a lawsuit.
The judge noted that trial in the case, in which Trump is also alleged to have defamed Carroll when he denied her claim, is set to begin in less than three months.
Kaplan also said that Trump had no justification for making his offer on the condition that Carroll’s lawyers be ordered to turn over a previously undisclosed appendix to a report on male DNA found on a dress she has said she was wearing when Trump allegedly attacked her.
The ruling means that there will be no DNA evidence presented at all in the trial.
Joseph Tacopina, an attorney who recently was hired to represent Trump in the case, declined to comment on the ruling.
Trump until recently had refused to provide a DNA sample.
Kaplan’s order Wednesday speculated that Trump’s “patently untimely request for the appendix reflects either tactical shift or just an afterthought.”
He said that one possible explanation is that Trump’s lawyers originally decided not to raise the demand for the appendix over the past three years because of concerns that Carroll’s lawyers would have “renewed demands for Mr. Trump’s DNA.”
But another possible explanation is that Trump’s lawyers had “a negligent failure to read the report with any care over the entire three-year period and thus the failure to notice the lack of the appendix,” the judge wrote.
“But whatever the explanation, the effort comes too late,” Kaplan wrote.
The judge noted that Carroll would not be entitled now to get a DNA sample from Trump, because the process of exchanging evidence, known as discovery, is completed.
“Her counsel have had plenty of opportunities in both of the two related cases to move to compel Mr. Trump to submit a DNA sample,” Kaplan wrote. “Had they done so, they almost certainly would have gotten it. But Ms. Carroll’s counsel never moved to compel Mr. Trump to submit a DNA sample. They obviously decided to go to trial without it.”
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