DA: Detective Told Weinstein Accuser to Delete Phone Data

It's the latest problem to roil prosecutors' case against the producer
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Oct 18, 2018 11:05 AM CDT
In this May 25, 2018, file photo, NYPD Detective Nicholas DiGaudio, right, escorts Harvey Weinstein into court in New York.   (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan, File)

(Newser) – The sexual assault case against Harvey Weinstein was roiled Wednesday for the second time in a week by what New York City prosecutors said was a police detective's improper conduct, the AP reports. Detective Nicholas DiGaudio, whose alleged witness coaching prompted the dismissal of part of the case last week, is now accused of urging one of Weinstein's accusers to delete material from her cellphones before she handed them over to prosecutors. The Manhattan district attorney's office detailed the alleged misconduct in a letter to Weinstein's lawyer that was made public Wednesday. The new allegations involve the detective's interactions with an unidentified woman who says Weinstein raped her in his Manhattan hotel room in 2013. Weinstein's lawyer said the revelation "even further undermines the integrity of this already deeply flawed indictment of Mr. Weinstein."

Prosecutors asked the woman to hand in any mobile phones she might have used during the time when she interacted with Weinstein; she was willing to do so, Assistant DA Joan Illuzzi-Orbon wrote, but was worried that the phones contained, "in addition to communications with the defendant, data of a personal nature that she regarded as private." DiGaudio allegedly advised her to delete anything she didn't want anyone else to see before handing over the phone, saying, "We just won't tell Joan." Illuzzi-Orbon said the woman didn't delete any information and instead asked a lawyer for advice; the lawyer she hired ultimately informed the DA's office of the detective's conduct and the phones were turned over "without any deletions." DiGaudio's union says he was simply trying to keep the woman from "being victimized twice" and that the information in question was "immaterial to the case." (Rose McGowan says she plotted revenge against Weinstein for 20 years.)


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