A new report from The Daily Beast states that the NYPD is ready to arrest Harvey Weinstein.
Allegations of sexual assault and harassment against Weinstein were among the first to spark the resurgence of Tarana Burke's #MeToo movement in Hollywood last year. Though Weinstein has faced some consequences for his allegedly deplorable actions — including being fired from his own company and expelled from the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences — Weinstein has yet to face an arrest.
That could change, reports The Daily Beast, who spoke with a police official regarding the case against Weinstein. According to the official, the NYPD is "ready to go with an arrest," and is only waiting for Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance to approve it.
Chief of Detectives Robert Boyce stated at a press conference on March 7:
"We are still accumulating evidence [against Harvey Weinstein]. It is going very, very well. We have a lot of information, we have people getting ready to go to grand jury. I would ask you to talk to Cy Vance about that, it's his case right now. We've accumulated quite a bit of evidence."
Per The Daily Beast, the NYPD is investigating five cases against Weinstein, including one from Lucia Evans, who spoke out against the producer in Rowan Farrow's 2017 New Yorker article, "From Aggressive Overtures To Sexual Assault: Harvey Weinstein's Accusers Tell Their Stories." She alleged that Weinstein forced her to perform oral sex on him in his office in 2004.
Another case is from actress Paz de la Huerta, who told her story to Vanity Fair last year. She alleged that Weinstein raped her twice — once in 2006, and again in 2010.
The other three cases are "still developing," reports The Daily Beast.
Weinstein, through his representatives, has vehemently denied all allegations of rape and non-consensual sex acts.
In the wake of the Weinstein allegations, 300 women working in the entertainment industry have teamed up for Time's Up, an initiative which seeks to help people fight back against sexual misconduct. The organization has already raised millions for a legal defense fund which will empower financially underprivileged women to take on their abusers in court. It will also push for legislation that promotes gender equality across all industries and an end to non-disclosure agreements in misconduct cases, which silences survivors.
Whatever happens with Weinstein's arrest, the message needs to be loud and clear: Abusers, no matter how powerful they are in their respective industry, can not get away with this any longer.
Refinery29 has reached out to reps for Weinstein and will update should we hear back.
If you have experienced sexual violence and are in need of crisis support, please call the RAINN Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673).
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