Lawyers for a woman who has accused Donald Trump of raping her in the 1990s are asking for a DNA sample from the US President.
They are seeking to determine whether his genetic material is on a dress advice columnist E. Jean Carroll’s says she was wearing during the alleged encounter.
Her legal team served notice to a lawyer for Mr Trump to submit a sample March 2 in Washington for “analysis and comparison against unidentified male DNA present on the dress”.
Ms Carroll filed a defamation suit against Mr Trump in November after the president denied her allegation.
Her lawyer, Roberta Kaplan, then had the black wool coat-style dress tested.
A lab report with the legal notice says DNA found on the sleeves was a mix of at least four contributors, at least one of them male.
Several other people were tested and eliminated as possible contributors to the mix, according to the lab report. Their names are redacted.
While the notice is a demand, such demands often spur court fights requiring a judge to weigh in on whether they will be enforced.
Ms Carroll accused Mr Trump last summer of raping her in a Manhattan luxury department store dressing room in the mid-1990s.
In a New York magazine piece in June and a book published the next month, Ms Carroll said she and Mr Trump met by chance, chatted and went to the lingerie department for Mr Trump to pick out a gift for an unidentified woman.
She said banter about trying on a bodysuit ended in a dressing room, where she said Mr Trump reached under her black wool dress, pulled down her tights and raped her as she tried to fight him off, eventually escaping.
“The Donna Karan coat dress still hangs on the back of my closet door, unworn and unlaundered since that evening,” she wrote.
She donned it for a photo accompanying the magazine piece.
Unidentified male DNA on the dress could prove that Donald Trump not only knows who I am but also that he violently assaulted meE. Jean Carroll
Mr Trump said in June that Carroll was “totally lying” and he had “never met this person in my life”.
While a 1987 photo shows them and their then-spouses at a social event, Mr Trump dismissed it as a moment when he was “standing with my coat on in a line”.
“She is trying to sell a new book – that should indicate her motivation,” he said in one of various statements on the matter, adding the book “should be sold in the fiction section”.
Ms Carroll sued Mr Trump in November, saying he smeared her and hurt her career as a long-time Elle magazine advice columnist by calling her a liar.
She is seeking unspecified damages and a retraction of Mr Trump’s statements.
“Unidentified male DNA on the dress could prove that Donald Trump not only knows who I am but also that he violently assaulted me in a dressing room at Bergdorf Goodman and then defamed me by lying about it and impugning my character,” Ms Carroll said in a statement Thursday.
Her lawyer said it was “standard operating procedure” in a sexual assault investigation to request a DNA sample from the accused.
“As a result, we’ve requested a simple saliva sample from Mr Trump to test his DNA, and there really is no valid basis for him to object,” she said.
Mr Trump’s lawyer has tried to get the case thrown out.
A Manhattan judge declined to do so earlier this month, saying the lawyer had not properly backed up his arguments that the case did not belong in a New York court.