Despite his attorney’s request for a postponement, former President Donald Trump has expressed frustration with the delay in his defamation trial brought by E. Jean Carroll. Trump arrived in Manhattan court on Monday to testify in the civil suit, where a jury will decide how much the former president owes Carroll for defaming her in 2019. However, after both Trump and Carroll entered the courtroom, U.S. District Judge Lewis Kaplan informed them that a juror had reported feeling flu-like symptoms in the morning and would be unable to attend the trial, reducing the jury to eight. Kaplan offered to continue the proceedings with the smaller pool, but Trump’s defense attorney, Alina Habba, requested an adjournment. Carroll’s team informed the judge that proceeding with eight jurors would be fine.
Trump complained about the delay in a post on Truth Social, claiming that the trial was interfering with his 2024 reelection campaign. He stated that all of these various ‘Biden Political Opponent’ trials are simply beginning, with great purpose, in the midst of what will be the most important election in our country’s history.
In May, a jury awarded Carroll $5 million in total damages after finding Trump liable for sexual assault and repeatedly defaming the former columnist. The trial scheduled for Monday aimed to determine the amount, if any, that Trump owes Carroll in damages for his 2019 claim that she was not his “type” and his dismissal of Carroll’s rape allegations as false.
It’s unclear when the defamation trial will resume. Carroll’s attorney, Robert Kaplan, asked the judge to begin proceedings on Tuesday, saying, “I’d like to get this trial over with.” However, Trump’s defense attorney, Alina Habba, requested a postponement of the trial until Wednesday, citing Trump’s inability to testify in the case until then due to the New Hampshire presidential primary on Tuesday evening.