The new cover of New York magazine has a jarring headline: Next to a photo of writer E. Jean Carroll, it reads: "This is what I was wearing 23 years ago when Donald Trump attacked me in a Bergdorf Goodman dressing room." Carroll, now 75, is probably best known as an advice columnist for Elle magazine. In the first-person piece, Carroll writes that she ran into Trump shopping at the Manhattan department store in late 1995 or early 1996. He said he was shopping for a girlfriend and asked for her help, she writes. They joked about lingerie and ended up in the dressing room area, where Carroll says Trump pinned her against a wall inside a dressing room and pulled down her tights. "Forcing his fingers around my private area, [he] thrusts his penis halfway—or completely, I'm not certain—inside me," she writes. A senior White House official calls it a lie.
"This is a completely false and unrealistic story surfacing 25 years after allegedly taking place and was created simply to make the president look bad," says the official. Carroll says she confided to two friends at the time, and the magazine says it has confirmed that. The store doesn't have security tapes that could shed light on the allegation. The essay is an excerpt from an upcoming book by Carroll, What Do We Need Men For? A Modest Proposal. In the piece, she also recounts an alleged sexual attack by former CBS chief Les Moonves, who left his post under a cloud of similar accusation. Moonves "emphatically denies" Carroll's allegation. By the count of Business Insider, 23 other women have previously accused Trump of sexual misconduct. Carroll says she waited until now to come forward out of a fear of public humiliation. (Read more President Trump stories.)