Rose McGowan speaks out against ‘evil’ Harvey Weinstein’s overturned conviction: ‘We know the truth’

McGowan was among the women who came forward alleging she was raped by the disgraced media mogul

Inga Parkel
Friday 26 April 2024 20:00 BST
Harvey Weinstein's 2020 rape conviction overturned by New York appeals court

Actor and activist Rose McGowan has reacted to the overturned rape conviction of Harvey Weinstein, saying that “we know the truth”.

In a 4-3 ruling on Thursday (25 April), the New York Court of Appeals overturned Weinstein’s 2020 conviction, stating that the original trial judge made “egregious errors” by allowing prosecutors to call witnesses whose allegations were not related to the charges at hand.

Later that day, McGowan – who was among several women who accused Weinstein of sexual assault – took to Instagram to share her response to the news.

“I’m proud of how far we’ve come. How much we’ve awakened. What we know of ourselves to be true. And what we know of others to be true,” the Charmed star, 50, said.

“No matter what they overturn, they cannot take away who we are, what we know, what we’ve gone through and what we can achieve in this life,” McGowan continued. “We are not victims. We are people that were injured by evil. And the evil sticks together, as witnessed and evidenced today, but we are better.”

She added: “To everyone out there fighting the good fight against this evil, these entities, these dark beings: You are light. You are beautiful. You matter. I’m with you.

“Some days we get knocked on our butts more days than others. But we can rise. And we can find the tiny joys no matter what, okay? Shed those tears. You are brave, you are beautiful, you are strong. We know the truth. ... We know what we are, and what they are.”

Rose McGowan and Harvey Weinstein
Rose McGowan and Harvey Weinstein (Getty Images)

McGowan first accused Weinstein of rape in 2017. She later detailed the alleged 1997 encounter in her 2018 autobiography, Brave.

In 2020, Weinstein was convicted of sexually assaulting former production assistant Mimi Haleyi in 2006 and raping former actor Jessica Mann in 2013. He is currently serving a 23-year sentence at a prison in upstate New York.

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Several women who were not involved in the official charges testified against Weinstein at the 2020 trial. The landmark trial stood as a major step forward in the #MeToo movement. And while Thursday’s ruling was a blow to #MeToo advocates, the court noted that it was based on legal technicalities and not an exoneration of Weinstein’s behaviour, saying the original trial irrevocably moved the cultural needle on attitudes about sexual assault, according to The Associated Press.

The producer still faces a 16-year sentence in California after he was convicted of rape in 2022.

Law & Order star Mariska Hargitay also denounced Weinstein’s overturned conviction. “The reversal of Harvey Weinstein’s conviction comes as a painful and infuriating affront to survivors and advocates everywhere,” she wrote on Instagram.

“To every survivor involved in the case and every survivor who has to bear witness to this incorrigible miscarriage of justice, my heart is with you today, tomorrow, and forever.”

If you have been raped or sexually assaulted, you can contact your nearest Rape Crisis organisation for specialist, independent and confidential support. For more information, visit their website here.

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