Governor Gavin Newsom’s wife, Jennifer Siebel Newsom, will testify against Hollywood movie producer Harvey Weinstein when he goes on trial in Los Angeles for sex crimes, according to the Los Angeles Times. Jury selection began Monday.
Weinstein is charged with 11 counts of sexual assault for incidents that happened between 2004-2013 at luxury Los Angeles hotels. In 2017, Siebel Newsom wrote in the Huffington Post about her own traumatic experience with Weinstein at The Peninsula Hotel.
“Like many other women, my client was sexually assaulted by Harvey Weinstein at a purported business meeting that turned out to be a trap,” her attorney, Elizabeth Fegan, wrote in a statement.
In court documents, California’s first partner is referred to as “Jane Doe No. 4.” Weinstein is charged with forcibly raping Jane Doe No. 4 in 2005. Siebel Newsom was an aspiring actress and filmmaker at the time. She agreed to be named as a victim publicly through her attorney.
Siebel Newsom wrote that Weinstein took advantage of her when she was “naïve and new to the industry.”
“I didn’t know how to deal with his aggressive advances … an invitation to meet with him about a role in The Peninsula Hotel, where staff were present and then all of a sudden disappeared like clockwork, leaving me alone with this extremely powerful and intimidating Hollywood legend,” she wrote in the Huffington Post piece.
Siebel Newsom married then-San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom three years after the incident with Weinstein.
Nearly 100 women, including high-profile actors, have accused Weinstein of sexual assault, rape, harassment, and abuse. Siebel Newsom is one of several women who are slated to testify for the trial.
The Los Angeles trial is Weinstein’s second sex crimes trial. The 70-year-old disgraced movie mogul is in the midst of serving a 23-year sentence for his 2020 conviction in New York.
Siebel Newsom said Weinstein’s abuse as a sexual predator against women in Hollywood was an “open secret” and dozens of would-be accusers were silenced for decades.
Fegan said her client intends to testify to “seek some measure of justice for survivors, and as part of her life’s work to improve the lives of women.”
Siebel Newsom wrote in the Huffington Post, “Like so many young women, I was taught from the earliest of ages to be polite and keep things “nice.” I was socialized to respect powerful men. This experience, among many others, was part of what inspired me to make Miss Representation. I couldn’t stomach that the industry that had so much power in creating our culture was so entirely demeaning, disrespectful, and diminishing of women and girls.”
The trial comes five years after women’s stories about Weinstein made the #MeToo movement explode.
Weinstein will face 135 years to life in prison if he is found guilty by a Los Angeles jury, prosecutors told the LA Times. He is being held in a Los Angeles County jail.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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