Harvey Weinstein injected himself with an erection drug before raping a woman in a Manhattan hotel room in 2013, a prosecutor alleged during opening statements at his sexual assault trial on Wednesday.
The incident occurred about a month into Weinstein’s relationship with the woman, an aspiring actress who met the Hollywood mogul at an industry party in Los Angeles, Manhattan Assistant District Attorney Meghan Hast said.
Weinstein allegedly became “more demanding and violent” during their encounters, leading to a March 18, 2013, incident at the DoubleTree hotel in Midtown East, where Hast said that “the defendant decided he wanted more and forcibly took it.”
The woman, who was staying at the hotel, was planning to introduce a friend to Weinstein during a breakfast meeting when he unexpectedly called from the lobby and said he was checking in, Hast told jurors in Manhattan Supreme Court.
When she went to find out why he’d booked his room, Weinstein allegedly pulled her inside and wouldn’t let her leave.
“He demanded that she take off her clothes. She refused. He became louder and more aggressive. He grabbed her and began to physically undress her,” Hast said.
When the woman relented and disrobed, Weinstein “ordered her onto the bed and disappeared for a moment into the bathroom,” Hast said, then “came back out, got on top of her and raped her.”
The woman, who Hast said was “distraught, disgusted and horrified,” ran into the bathroom and “saw a needle in the garbage can.”
“She looked at the label of the wrapper and later Googled it,” learning that it was for an erectile dysfunction drug, Hast said.
In 2018, a former Weinstein personal assistant, Sandeep Rehal, filed a federal sex discrimination and harassment suit against him that alleged she was forced to manage his stock of Caverject, a fast-acting medication in disposable syringes that’s injected into the penis to produce an erection.
Rehal’s suit was dismissed on a technicality, but Rehal reportedly is among more than 30 women who struck a tentative $25 million deal last month to settle claims against him and his bankrupt movie studio, The Weinstein Co.