Why Harvey Weinstein won’t be charged in 3 sex assault claims made by L.A. women

Harvey Weinstein arrives at federal court Jan. 6 in New York. The disgraced movie mogul faces allegations of rape and sexual assault. Jury selection begins this week.
(Seth Wenig / Associated Press)

Several woman had made allegations of sexual assault against Harvey Weinstein.

But Los Angeles County prosecutors on Monday ended up filing charges in the cases of just two of the women.

Prosecutors said they declined to file in three other cases brought to law enforcement because of the statute of limitations. Three other cases remain under investigation.

One woman told the Los Angeles Police Department she was raped by Weinstein at a house in Hollywood in the late 1970s.


A second woman reported to Beverly Hills police that when she met with the producer in April 2011 at a Beverly Hills hotel, he appeared in a bathrobe and exposed himself.

“He held her hand and attempted to coax her into the bedroom, but she was able to evade him.

“Once he released her arm, she fled the hotel suite and left that hotel,” wrote Deputy Dist. Atty. Paul Thompson in declining the case.

A third woman identified as “a dancer at an adult entertainment club” accused Weinstein of misdemeanor battery in connection with a Christmas Eve 2015 incident, according to Thompson’s declination.

Those cases were too old to prosecute, he noted.

Legal experts have said the cases fall into two potential charging catagories: criminal sexual assault such as rape, and the lesser crime of lewd acts such as unwanted touching or masturbation.

Lewd act allegations have proved more challenging because the statute of limitations — the time period during which a crime can be prosecuted — in California is as little as one year.

Other sex crimes have much longer statutes of limitation.

For most cases of rape, it’s 10 years.