Russell Simmons has defeated a lawsuit from a Jane Doe who accused him of rape because the complaint was filed at least four years too late.
The woman filed a $10 million suit in March 2018 alleging sexual battery and intentional and negligent infliction of emotional distress. The prolific music producer denied her claims and called them a “vile” extortion attempt.
L.A. Superior Court judge Mark H. Epstein on Nov. 13 entered judgment in favor of Simmons, after granting his motion for summary judgment on the grounds that Doe’s claims stemmed from an alleged incident in 1988 and were time-barred.
Epstein had denied Simmons’ previous motion for summary judgment because his argument that Doe’s suit was barred by the statute of limitations was based on information obtained in an email that was sent during settlement negotiations. Simmons’ lawyers at Glaser Weil renewed the motion after obtaining admissible evidence.
“Defendant contends that plaintiff’s claims are time-barred because plaintiff admitted the alleged incident occurred in 1988 but filed her action in 2018,” writes Epstein. “This is true. As previously stated, the Court granted defendant’s motion to deem the request for admission asking plaintiff to admit that the alleged sexual battery occurred in 1988.”
Epstein found that Doe would have needed to file her complaint in 1990 and even if she could argue that the deadline was tolled because Simmons didn’t permanently live in the state that extension would have expired in 2014.
Doe hadn’t filed an opposition to the motion, so Epstein held his Oct. 1 order for two weeks to give her time to respond. She didn’t, and on Nov. 13 he entered judgment in Simmons’ favor.
The woman’s attorney, Douglas Mastroianni, was disbarred on Sept. 18 following unrelated disciplinary charges.