The New York Police Department held a press conference Friday where they announced they are building a criminal case against Harvey Weinstein and weighing an arrest warrant for the producer who has been accused by dozens of women of sexual assault.
“If this person was still in New York and it was recent, we would go right away and make the arrest,” Chief of Detectives Robert Boyce said Friday, adding that Weinstein is currently at an Arizona rehab facility.
“I am not going to deny that we don’t have probable cause, but I will say we have an actual case going forward. If this person was still in New York and it was recent, we would go right away and make the arrest. No doubt. But we are talking about a seven-year-old case, and we need to move forward gathering evidence first.”
Boyce’s press conference comes on the heels of new allegations put forth by Boardwalk Empire actress Paz de la Huerta, who told police that Weinstein raped her on a pair of occasions at her apartment in late 2010.
“Immediately when we got inside the house, he started to kiss me and I kind of brushed [him] away,” de la Huerta told Vanity Fair. “Then he pushed me on to the bed and his pants were down and he lifted up my skirt. I felt afraid … It wasn’t consensual … It happened very quickly. He stuck himself inside me. When he was done he said he’d be calling me. I kind of just laid on the bed in shock.”
After the NYPD interviewed de la Huerta and corroborated portions of her account, Boyce called the actress’ accusations “a credible and detailed narrative,” the Hollywood Reporter writes. De la Huerta was able to “articulate each and every movement of the crime: where she was, where they met, where this happened and what he did,” Boyce added.
However, despite Boyce’s remarks, the office for New York District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr. said in a statement that they were not ready to file charges against Weinstein, the New York Times reports. Vance Jr. had previously been criticized for failing to prosecute Weinstein following earlier accusations against the producer, who donated money to Vance Jr.’s campaign.
“I was very traumatized,” de la Huerta said of the Weinstein incidents. “I don’t think I was taking very good care of myself. What happened with Harvey left me scarred for many years. I felt so disgusted by it, with myself… I became a little self-destructive. It was really hard for me to deal, to cope.”