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A Woman Who Accused Trump of Attempted Rape Is Speaking Out

Jill Harth says Trump pulled her into a child's bedroom and groped her in 1993—and wants an apology for being called a liar.
21.7.16

Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump. Photo via Flickr user Gage Skidmore

A makeup artist who filed a 1997 lawsuit against Donald Trump for inappropriate sexual advances and what her lawyers called attempted rape isn't staying quiet anymore.

After seeing her suit described by the now-official Republican presidential nominee as "meritless," Jill Harth decided to go public, the Guardian reports. In addition to detailing Trump's alleged groping back in 1993 in graphic detail, Harth—who admits she once supported Trump's candidacy—explained she believes her professional life is suffering and wants an apology for being described as a liar.

Annons

"He didn't have to say anything," she told the paper. "For once, he should have closed his mouth. He didn't have to comment. We were on great—not great, I'll take that back—we were on good terms, friendly terms. He didn't—he started this. What is happening now is of his own making, OK? I was quiet."

Harth's story hasn't changed since the 90s, though she dropped the lawsuit after her former partner George Houraney—with whom she was visiting Trump's Mar-a-Lago estate on business at the time of the alleged incident—reached a settlement with the real estate tycoon. (Houraney claimed Trump breached their contract by backing out of a festival during which Harth was to oversee a pin-up girl competition.)

According to Harth, the couple were touring the Florida estate alongside beauty pageant contestants when Trump pulled her into his daughter Ivanka's bedroom. "He pushed me up against the wall, and had his hands all over me and tried to get up my dress again, and I had to physically say, 'What are you doing? Stop it," she said. "It was a shocking thing to have him do this because he knew I was with George, he knew they were in the next room. And how could he be doing this when I'm there for business?"

Trump allegedly continued an aggressive pursuit of Harth—who previously spoke to the outlet LawNewz about the case—for several months after the initial advance.

For his part, Michael Cohen, special counsel to Trump, emailed the Guardian, "It is disheartening that one has to dignify a response to the below absurd query. Mr. Trump denies each and every statement made by Ms. Harth as these 24-year-old allegations lack any merit or veracity." But the account is sure to bring attention squarely back to Trump's questionable track record when it comes to women, who—as the New York Times reported this spring—have tended to alternately praise his willingness to advance their professional careers and assailed him for being creepy and sexist.

Speaking of which: Harth's suit against Trump came up in that Times story, and she now says the campaign reached out to ask she defend the candidate upon publication. Needless to say, she did not play ball.

"They were trying to get me to say it never happened and I made it up," Harth said Tuesday. "And I said I'm not doing that."