Former Project Runway production assistant Miriam “Mimi” Haleyi, one of the two women named in Harvey Weinstein‘s New York indictment, took the stand against him on Monday.
The 42-year-old Finland native told Manhattan Supreme Court jurors that Weinstein invited her to his apartment in July of 2006, and then forced sex on her.
“He greeted me, he invited me in. Asked me if I wanted anything to drink and I believe the television was on and we were just having a normal exchange and sat down on the sofa,” Haleyi said of Weinstein.
When he mad a sexual pass, she said: “I got up from the sofa and I said, ‘Oh, no, no, no.’ I just kind of tried to reject him and push him away … and he kissed me and fondling me.”
She continued: “He was coming toward me physically and I was backed into a bedroom that was on the corner of that open space area. I walked backwards because he was pushing me with his body until I got to the bed and I fell backwards onto the bed and I tried to get up and he pushed me down.”
Haleyi said: “I just said, ‘No, no. I don’t want this to happen. This is not going to happen, I am on my period.'”
She described the attack: “I couldn’t even get away from him at all — let alone out of the apartment. Ultimately, after a while I just checked out,” she said. “He held me down on the bed and he forced himself on me orally. I was on my period. I had a tampon in there. I was mortified … He forced himself on me orally, he put his mouth on my vagina.”
Haleyi added: “I kept trying to tell him, ‘No, don’t go there and don’t do that. I’m on my period. I have a tampon in.’ It was as if he didn’t believe me and he said something like, ‘Where is it, then?’ like that and he actually pulled my tampon out.”
Afterward, Haleyi said, she doesn’t “remember much,” “except when I left the apartment, I remember walking by the building looking to see if the driver was there.” He was not.
She explained that she confided in a roommate about the incident, but decided to not call police. “I thought about my options, but I decided that going to the police was not an option for me,” she said. “Obviously Mr. Weinstein has a lot more power and resources and connections. I didn’t think I would really stand a chance.”
Later, she remained in her job and even agreed to meet up with him again at the Tribeca Hotel, where he attacked her again, she said.
“He had managed to convince me to meet him again just to do something like that to me again and I felt like an idiot for having believed whatever he was saying even though I don’t remember the conversations,” Haleyi said.
She testified Weinstein “led me onto the bed … I just laid there … he had intercourse with me.”
“He said something like, ‘You’re a whore and a b++ch.’ He thought that would somehow turn me on.”
Weinstein’s lawyer Damon Cheronis produced an email she sent him two years after the attack.
It read: “Hi Harvey, How are you? Great to see you in Cannes.” The email went on to mention an article in “today’s New York Post about the Addams Family being turned into a Broadway musical. Just to remind you what a genius I am — didn’t i tell you that was a great idea like 3 years ago at the mercer bar..hmm? Lots of Love Miriam.”
Weinstein’s fate largely hinges on the whether the jury of 12 believes that he assaulted the two women named in his indictment. He has pleaded not guilty. If convicted, he faces life behind bars.
In all, more than 80 women have accused him of misconduct.