Harvey Weinstein accuser releases video of disgraced producer groping her before allegedly assaulting her the same evening
Melissa Thompson, one of the many accusers of the discgraced media mogul, has now come forward with a video that shows Weinstein making inappropriate moves on her.
A new video has surfaced which shows one of Harvey Weinstein's accusers being touched inappropriately by the Hollywood mogul before he allegedly raped her.
Released through an exclusive story by Sky News, the footage shows Weinstein touching and making sexually suggestive comments to Melissa Thompson, who was at Weinstein’s offices in New York for a business meeting in 2011. Thompson alleges that a few hours later Weinstein took her to the nearby Tribeca Grand hotel where, she claims, he raped her after cornering her.
The video, which was recorded on Thompson's laptop, shows Weinstein entering the room and saying, "Hello Melissa Thompson," before avoiding her handshake and going in for a hug instead, running his hands down the entire length of her back. While doing so he runs his hands across her back and says “that's nice, let's keep it up”.
Weinstein then continues to make a number of suggestive comments. "So am I allowed to flirt with you?", he asks her in the video to which she replies, "Ummm we'll see, a little bit." Weinstein can later be seen rubbing his right hand up and down her left arm as she, flustered, tries to concentrate on finishing her pitch.
According to the Sky News report, Thompson alleges that, out of view of the camera, Weinstein proceeded to run his hand up her dress and caress her thighs. "Let me have a little part of you. Give it to me. It's okay, would you like to do it some more?", Weinstein can be heard saying Thompson replies: "A little bit... a little high, that's a little high, that's a little high."
A woman who accused Harvey Weinstein of rape has released a video of him caressing her in a meeting pic.twitter.com/006Oli0waW— ABC News (@abcnews) September 13, 2018
When asked by the Sky News reporter if she encouraged Weinstein's behavior, Thompson said she didn't mean to, but admitted she tried to "volley" with him as a way of managing the situation.
"I think (he) was playing a cat-and-mouse game from the very beginning to see how far he could push me, and what my reactions might be, so that he could gauge... how he would play me; where my levers where, what were my vulnerabilities," she said.
At the end of the meeting, Weinstein allegedly asked to meet Thompson in the Tribeca Grand Hotel lobby restaurant and the businesswoman claimed she thought he was trying to close a potential deal. She said Weinstein came to the lobby and told her to follow him. He then allegedly took her to his hotel room and raped her.
“If I would try to fight myself away from him, he would then move around to a place where he could block me in. I constantly felt trapped, no matter where I turned. He corned me, over and over again,” Ms Thompson told Sky News.
Thompson is one of three plaintiffs named in a class action lawsuit filed in June against Weinstein, Miramax, The Weinstein Company and a host of other defendants. The recording and alleged rape are reportedly being used as part of a civil suit against Weinstein.
Harvey Weinstein's lawyer, Benjamin Brafman, responded to the allegations. "Several respected journalists and trustworthy individuals have seen the entire video," he said in a statement.
“What they shared with us is that the video, when viewed in its entirety, in context and not in select excerpts, demonstrates that there is nothing forceful, but casual – if not awkward – flirting from both parties.
“Anything short of that is intended to make Mr. Weinstein appear inappropriate, and even exploitative. It was produced by Ms Thompson to bolster her position in a civil lawsuit seeking money. This is a further attempt to publicly disgrace Mr. Weinstein for financial gain, and we will not stand for it."
“Facts do matter,” he concluded.