Harvey Weinstein accuser Jessica Mann left a Manhattan courtroom on Monday in tears after reading a May 2014 email to a former boyfriend, in which she first revealed to him her previous relationship with the disgraced producer. In the letter, where she also mentions a previous sexual assault, Mann wrote that she admired Weinstein because he “validated” her Hollywood dreams and “encouraged” her to pursue her dreams in the entertainment industry.
“I remember the day I realized I was controlling my world because I was sexually assaulted and that story played out where I played into sexual dynamics with people to feel like I would never be taken advantage of again,” Mann said on the stand, reading from the letter.
She then began to uncontrollably cry in the courtroom, forcing Justice James Burke to call for a 10-minute break. When she returned, Assistant District Attorney Joan Illuzzi and defense attorney Donna Ruttno approached Mann and tried to calm her down— but she was still inconsolable. Burke then ruled her testimony should resume Tuesday. Mann’s emotional outburst occurred at the end of her two-day testimony against Weinstein, during which she’s alleged the toppled titan sexually assaulted her multiple times—including raping her in a Manhattan hotel room in 2013. Dressed in a black suit, Weinstein dozed off several times as defense lawyers on Monday accused Mann of manipulating the toppled titan for career gain, repeatedly asking her why she continued to send friendly emails to the producer after the alleged assaults.