This week, a New York jury found disgraced film producer Harvey Weinstein guilty on multiple charges, in relation to accusations of abuse and assault from more than 80 women, who were victimized by the 67-year-old Hollywood mogul throughout the duration of his career. Despite consistently denying the allegations against him, the amount of evidence and corroborated testimonies in the case has been overwhelming.
Following the guilty verdict on Monday, Weinstein was supposed to be on his way to Rikers Island Prison to await sentencing, but he was unexpectedly diverted to a New York City hospital after complaining of chest pains. Despite his momentary reprieve in the hospital, he still faces up to 25 years in prison for these charges, and is also awaiting another criminal case in Los Angeles, California which could end with the same verdict.
Meanwhile, Dr. Barbera Ziv, a forensic psychologist who testified against Weinstein, and one of the key witnesses in the trial, was hit by a car while walking the across the street and then quickly rushed to the hospital with multiple injuries, likely somewhere near her home or work in the Philadelphia area.
Very little is known about the incident, but Law and Crime reported that she was hospitalized with multiple broken bones, and the story was later confirmed by Inside Edition. Her testimony dispelled some of the victim-blaming defenses that Weinstein and his attorneys were hoping to use in the case, like the criticism that the women waited too long to make the complaints, or that they continued to work for him despite their encounter.
Dr. Barbara Ziv is a psychiatrist in Flourtown, Pennsylvania and is affiliated with Temple University Hospital. She received her medical degree from Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine and has been in practice for more than 20 years. Ziv has been qualified as an expert in more than 200 civil and criminal cases, and has testified for both prosecution and defense teams.
Dr. Barbara Ziv also participated as a witness in the case against Bill Cosby. In both cases, her testimony is said to have been vital in securing the convictions. Some of the major issues that Ziv covered in her testimonies was explaining why victims may delay disclosing a sexual assault, factors that determine whether and how a victim may interact with their attacker after an assault has happened, or why a victim may not show obvious signs of an outward trauma after an assault.
These types of arguments have long been used to justify or defend powerful men who were accused of similar crimes, and have been so prevalent in our society that Ziv has called them the “rape myths.”
There is no solid evidence that Ziv’s testimony has anything to do with her recent injuries, but the timing is extremely suspicious considering that it happened in the very same week that Weinstein was convicted. Weinstein also has a very bad reputation for ruthlessly intimidating his victims, to the point where some journalists were even afraid to report on the case.