The American Lawyer named Robbie Kaplan, Shawn Crowley and Mike Ferrara its Litigators of the Week for leading the trial team that successfully represented writer E. Jean Carroll in her sexual battery and defamation suit against Donald Trump, securing a $5 million jury verdict on her behalf.
Shawn, who handled opening statements, Robbie, who handled closing arguments, and Mike, who handled rebuttal arguments at trial for Carroll, were interviewed by The American Lawyer on the case and its implications.
Robbie said, “It was so important to Ms. Carroll that she hold Trump accountable for not just the sexual abuse she endured, but for the defamatory lies he spread about her after she came forward. Ms. Carroll and this team wanted to prove that no one is above the law—not even the former President of the United States. As Ms. Carroll has said countless times, however, in her mind, this case was not only for her, but for the countless survivors of sexual abuse who have been too scared to come forward or who did have the courage to speak up and then were not believed, retaliated against, and pushed back into silence.”
Discussing the obstacles to bringing the case to trial, Shawn noted, “For the last four years Donald Trump used every trick in the book to try to delay Ms. Carroll’s efforts to get her day in court. He even got the Justice Department to intervene in Ms. Carroll’s original defamation action against him. In order for Ms. Carroll’s battery claim to go to trial, we had to wait for New York to first pass a law, the Adult Survivors Act, to make that possible. The minute (and I truly mean minute) that law went into effect at midnight before Thanksgiving, our firm filed Ms. Carroll’s case and did everything we could to bring the case to trial.”
In prepping Carroll for her testimony, Mike said, “I’ve never in my career had a client show more strength and resilience, and what the jury ultimately heard was exactly who Ms. Carroll is—a strong and honest person who was simply there to tell the truth.”