A woman who recently accused Donald Trump of sexually assaulting her in the mid-1990s said Monday that Trump’s boasts on the infamous 2005 “Access Hollywood” video about being able to grope women recalled her own alleged experience with the future president.
“It knocked me back. I felt relief and I – that’s right. That’s right,” magazine advice columnist E. Jean Carroll told CNN’s Alisyn Camerota, nodding her head affirmatively when asked if the recording gave her “confirmation.”
In the tape, which surfaced during the 2016 campaign, Trump is heard saying he was able to grab women “by the p****” because he was famous.
In the wake of the video’s release, Trump apologized and dismissed his remarks as nothing more than “locker room” talk. On Saturday, the President denied Carroll’s allegations, telling reporters as he departed the White House for Camp David, “I have no idea who this woman is.”
On Monday, Trump told The Hill in an interview that Carroll is “totally lying.”
“Totally lying. I don’t know anything about her,” he said. “I know nothing about this woman. I know nothing about her. She is – it’s just a terrible thing that people can make statements like that.”
Carroll responded to Trump’s denial later on Monday, pointing to Trump’s history when previously faced with accusations of sexual misconduct.
“He’s denied all 15 women who have come forward. He denies,” she told CNN’s Anderson Cooper on “AC360.” “He turns it around. He threatens and he attacks.”
Carroll, who has been an advice columnist for Elle magazine for 26 years, details the allegations in her forthcoming book, “What Do We Need Men For? A Modest Proposal,” excerpts of which were published Friday in New York magazine. While Carroll does not appear to name Trump in the printed excerpt of the first-person account, he is named in the headline, which reads: “Hideous Men: Donald Trump assaulted me in a Bergdorf Goodman dressing room 23 years ago. But he’s not alone on the list of awful men in my life.”
In the excerpts, Carroll claims that she encountered “one of New York’s most famous men” in the fall of 1995 or spring 1996 at the Bergdorf Goodman department store, where she says he attacked her in one of the dressing rooms after pressing her to try on lingerie and pulls her toward the dressing room, where he “unzips his pants, and, forcing his fingers around my private area, thrusts his penis halfway – or completely, I’m not certain – inside me.” She says she fought against Trump.
On Friday, Trump accused Carroll of sharing her account to raise book sales, comparing her to women who he says “falsely accused” Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh of sexual assault during his contentious confirmation hearings. He also implied that Democrats could be involved in Carroll’s “false accusations” but did not offer any details as to how, and Carroll on Monday denied any political affiliation or motivation.
Additionally, the President said in a statement released on Friday that he “never met this person,” though the article published that same day includes a photo of Trump and Carroll talking in a group. “There’s some picture where we’re shaking hands. It looks like at some kind of event. I have my coat on. I have my wife standing next to me. And I didn’t know (Carroll’s) husband, but he was a newscaster,” said Trump, who was married to Ivana Trump at the time. “But I have no idea who she is,” he continued.
On Monday, Carroll told Camerota that she didn’t publicly reveal the alleged assault at the time because a friend with whom she shared details of the incident advised against it, saying Trump has “200 lawyers” and that “he’ll bury you.” She also told the CNN co-anchor she decided not to come forward in 2016 when a flood of women made similar accusations against Trump because the women “were doing the job … an army of women, they were coming forward.”
Carroll, who is depicted on the cover of New York wearing the same coatdress she claims she wore during the encounter with Trump more than two decades ago, said she has “no idea” if Trump ejaculated or if his semen is on the dress, but said she hasn’t had it dry cleaned.
Trump has vehemently denied all of the womens’ allegations made against him. Less than three weeks before the election, he threatened to file a lawsuit against “all of these liars” once the election was over, but has not yet followed through on his threat.
Carroll also said Monday the thought of confronting Trump “terrifies” her, telling Camerota that such an encounter would be a “terrible situation.”
CNN’s Veronica Stracqualursi, Caroline Kelly and Sara Murray contributed to this report.