Donald Trump's reputation as a womanizer is well-known. So is his history as a misogynist. But it's only with Friday's release of an extremely lewd video, in which the Republican nominee for President can be heard bragging how "when you're a star" you can do whatever the hell you want to women's bodies—including "grab them by the pussy"—that the rape accusations leveled against him are finally getting national attention.
In a statement released shortly after the Washington Post published the damning video, Trump dismissed the comments as "locker room banter." But in light of these charges, the country is taking a closer look at what may be a history of not only sexually violent words but sexually violent actions.
According to legal documents, Trump has been accused of raping a 13-year-old child, raping his ex-wife, and attempting to rape a former business associate. He vehemently denies all of these accusations—and it should be noted anyone can file a civil complaint in court, and a complaint is by no means proof of allegations. That being said, the accusations are chilling.
The first and most famous accusation comes from Trump's ex-wife Ivana Trump. During a deposition in the '90s, Ivana described a harrowing scene in which Trump held her arms back, pulled at her hair, and raped her in a fit of rage. She herself used the word "rape." The details of the incident were made public in the 1993 book Lost Tycoon: The Many Lives of Donald J. Trump, written by the journalist Harry Hurt III.
Trump denies this incident took place, and before the book hit shelves his lawyers required that it include a statement at the front written by Ivana, in which she walks back her use of the word "rape."
"During a deposition given by me in connection with my matrimonial case, I stated that my husband had raped me,” the statement said. “I referred to this as a ‘rape,’ but I do not want my words to be interpreted in a literal or criminal sense.”
In her statement she added instead that she felt "violated."
The second accusation of sexual assault comes from a 1997 lawsuit. Jill Harth says she and her romantic partner were working with Trump on a business deal, when The Donald started making unwelcome sexual advances. In a lawsuit filed against Trump, she says he leered at her inappropriately, groped her on several occasions without her consent, and even "attempted rape."
In her lawsuit, Harth describes a scene in which Trump took her into one of his children's bedrooms at his Florida estate Mar-a-Lago, threw her against the wall, began touching her all over, and lifted up her dress.
In an interview with The Guardian, Harth says she had to physically prevent him from advancing and shouted out: "What are you doing? Stop it." Adding, "It was a shocking thing to have him do this because he knew I was with George [her partner], he knew they were in the next room. And how could he be doing this when I’m there for business?"
Trump denies any of this ever happened, calling the allegations "meritless." While Harth withdrew her lawsuit shortly after Trump settled a separate lawsuit with her romantic partner over a business matter, she stands by her claims. (Harth and Trump had a cordial relationship until recently, when the allegations resurfaced and he denied them. At that point, according to The Guardian, Harth decided to speak out.) She also says Trump's camp has contacted her on several occasions in an attempt to make her change her story and deny it ever happened. "I said I’m not doing that,” she told The Guardian.
The third case against Trump comes via a recent federal lawsuit filed in June 2016 in the State of New York by "Jane Doe." In the suit, Doe alleges that Trump raped her back in 1994, when she was just 13 years old. According to legal docs, Doe says she attended parties with Trump and his friend Jeffrey Epstein—a registered sex offender known in the media as the "billionaire pedophile." Doe, who was trying to become a model, says it was during these parties that Trump initiated sexual contact with her on several occasions and on one occasion allegedly raped her.
According to the suit, Trump tied her to a bed, exposed himself to her and then raped her in a "savage sexual attack." Doe says she screamed for him to stop at which point he struck her in the face while screaming "that he would do whatever he wanted." In a statement filed with the lawsuit, Doe says Trump threatened to ruin her life and her family's life if she ever told anyone about the incident:
Immediately following this rape Defendant Trump threatened me that, were I ever to reveal any of the details of Defendant Trump's sexual and physical abuse of me, my family and I would be physically harmed if not killed.
The lawsuit also includes a witness statement from a "Tiffany Doe," who says that, in the '90s, she was in charge of recruiting adolescent women to entertain guests at Epstein's parties—and she personally saw the incident occur.
I personally witnessed the Plaintiff being forced to perform various sexual acts with Donald J. Trump and Mr. Epstein. Both Mr. Trump and Mr. Epstein were advised that she was 13 years old.
In her statement, Tiffany Doe also says she witnessed Trump force other minors to perform oral sex on him and witnessed his "physical abuse" on them "when they finished the act." On Friday, hours before the lewd video of Trump was leaked, a federal judge in New York ordered a December hearing for the case.
According to documents, Trump has denied the allegations, stating “These allegations are not only categorically false, but disgusting at the highest level and clearly framed to solicit media attention or, perhaps, are simply politically motivated. There is absolutely no merit to these allegations. Period.”
Editor's Note: This story was originally published on July 21, 2016, hours before Donald Trump accepted the Republican nomination for president in Cleveland.
Taryn Hillin is Fusion's love and sex writer, with a large focus on the science of relationships. She also loves dogs, Bourbon barrel-aged beers and popcorn — not necessarily in that order.