AceShowbiz - Harvey Weinstein accuser Mimi Haley had to sit down in a cafe and cry after hearing the disgraced movie mogul had been found guilty of rape.
The former production assistant's tearful testimony in court helped New York prosecutors land a conviction on Monday, February 24, 2020 after jurors in the Weinstein trial found him guilty of sexual assault and third-degree rape, and she's now celebrating the outcome as the producer faces over 25 years behind bars.
"I was actually in a coffee shop when it (news) kind of popped up on my screen from a friend and I just sat down and I started crying...," she told "Good Morning America" on Tuesday. "It was just a huge sense of relief that the jury got it, that they believed me, and that I was heard. I was just grateful."
Haley confessed it was terrifying to take the stand against her attacker, but she felt "it was the right thing to do," and she hopes the verdict sends a message to the #MeToo movement, which launched in 2017 following published exposes of Weinstein's character and behaviour.
Since then, over 80 women have come forward and accused the disgraced producer of sexual misconduct, assault and rape.
"I just feel we're being educated about the reality of sexual assault and sexual assault victims and what that many times involves," she added. "A lot of sexual assault victims do know their attacker and they have some sort of relationship to that person and that brings with it a whole other layer of emotional confusion that you need to process... We're getting rid of a lot of outdated ideas about these kind of assaults."
Haley went on to call out one of Weinstein's attorneys, who made it clear in court that she would never put herself in a "position" to be attacked - like her client's accusers.
In an appearance on U.S. daytime show "The View", Mimi blasted the culture of victim-blaming, stating, "I don't think that we should be telling people like, for example, Harvey Weinstein's attorney did, that, 'Don't put yourself in that position.' I think we should be focusing on, 'Don't rape people.' If they come to your house, don't rape them. If they come to your hotel, don't rape them."
"I really feel like (we need) to shift the focus from constantly victim-blaming and evaluating what somebody's part in it was to basically the actual person who committed the crime taking responsibility for their choices," she added.
Haley now plans to be back in court for Weinstein's sentencing on March 11, but she has no idea what she's going to say to him.