Another woman has accused Donald Trump of sexual assault. Summer Zervos was a candidate on The Apprentice during its fifth season, and is Trump's latest accuser, according to Bustle. The transcript of her press conference is heartbreaking. The Trump campaign has not responded to Romper's request for comment.
Zervos said that while on the show, she was initially impressed by Trump and wanted an opportunity to be a part of his company. Although she was fired, she continued to admire him after the show and consider him a potential employer. She reached out to him in 2007 to have lunch when she was visiting New York. Their meeting then was the first assault she experienced at the hands of Trump, but unfortunately it wasn't the last, she said. Zervos described a later incident in Los Angeles where Trump repeatedly kissed and touched her. She felt violated and embarrassed, but because he was a man who had the power to give her a job that she wanted, she dealt with his advances.
Her story is devastating, especially because it confirms and validates what so many women know to be our reality. When a powerful man exerts his power on a woman, we just have to deal. Zervos was clearly emotional throughout her statement, and it's unfortunate that she had to go through this ordeal. A reporter asked why she did decide to come forward and what she hoped would come of it. Zervos said, "I just want to be able to sleep at night when I'm 70." It's so admirable of Zervos to come forward with her story, and I sincerely hope she can get some sleep after this. Read on for the full transcript.
When I arrived, he kissed me on the lips. I was surprised, but felt that perhaps it was just a form of greeting. We sat and spoke; he was extremely complimentary. He said that he was impressed with how I handled myself on The Apprentice. He said that he had never met anyone with my combination of being smart, attractive, and with as large a set of balls as I had. He said he would love to have me work for him. Mr. Trump said he would be coming to Los Angeles soon, and he would contact me.
I felt as though I were reaching for my brass ring. I was very excited. I felt as though my dream of working for Mr. Trump might come true. As I was about to leave, he again kissed me on the lips. This made me feel nervous and embarrassed. This is not what I wanted or expected. He asked me for my phone number, and I scrawled it down with a marker. I left hurriedly and called a friend who lived in New York because I was upset by the kiss. I also called my parents to let them know what happened. I spoke at length with my loved ones, and we came to the conclusion that this undoubtedly some form of greeting and that I should not take it as anything other than that.
Mr. Trump called early in the morning of the day I returned home. He referred to me as his 'OC angel.' He wanted to know who was with me at that hour. He scolded me about my penmanship because it was difficult to read my phone number as I had written it for him. Even though he had called me, he concluded the call by asking for my phone number. He then called me again, days later, to let me know he was coming to Los Angeles. He again called me after he had just landed in Los Angeles. He asked me to meet him that evening at the Beverly Hills Hotel and asked me where I would like to have dinner.
When I arrived, his security guard greeted me at the hotel. He walked with me to greet Mr. Trump. I assumed we were going to a restaurant in the hotel. Instead, I was taken to a bungalow. The security guard opened the door, and I went in. I was standing in the entryway; to my left was the bedroom, and I saw Mr. Trump's clothes on the bed. I did not see him, but he greeted me with 'hello,' in a sing-song voice... I thought a mistake had been made and Mr. Trump was speaking to someone he was more familiar with. I walked further into the living room away from the bedroom and sat down. I waited for about 15 minutes until Mr. Trump emerged. He had his suit on.
I stood up, and he came to me and started kissing me open-mouthed as he was pulling me towards him. I walked away, and I sat down in a chair. He was on a loveseat across from me, and I made an attempt at conversation. He then asked me to sit next to him. I complied. He then grabbed my shoulder and began kissing me again very aggressively and placed his hand on my breast. I pulled back and walked to another part of the room. He then walked up, grabbed my hand, and walked me into the bedroom. I walked out. He then turned me around and said, 'Let's lay down and watch some telly-telly.' He put me in an embrace, and I tried to push him away.
I pushed his chest, put space between us, and said 'Come on, man. Get real.' He repeated my words back to me... as he began thrusting his genitals. He tried to kiss me again with my hands still on his chest, and I said, 'Dude, you're tripping right now,' attempting to make it clear I was not interested. He said, 'What do you want?' And I said, 'I came to have dinner.' He said, 'Ok, we'll have dinner. He paced around the room. He acted like he was angry. He pointed out that someone had delivered a fruit basket. I felt that it was to show me how important he was.
As we were waiting for dinner, I sat across the room from him as far away as possible. He started saying that he did not think I had ever known love or had ever been in love. I did not want to discuss my personal life with him. Then just before dinner arrived, he transformed into being all about business and began questioning me as though I were on a job interview. Dinner was delivered to the bungalow. When dinner arrived, he asked me to wait in a small room. I felt that he did not want the waiter to see me. After the table was set, he beckoned me to come out. We shared a club sandwich.
The conversation then focused on the fact that I had a mortgage on my home, which I told him was in good standing. He spoke about how he was able to maneuver to get out of debt. He told me that I need to let my house go into default and tell the bank they could take it back. He advised that the bank would then take anything to help rid themselves of a problem loan. He told me to call the bank and tell them I was leaving the keys on the table, and tell them to just pick it up. He said that would be a mini-version of what he does. He urged me not to make another payment on my home loan.
He then abruptly said that he was tired and that he needed to go to bed and ended the conversation. He told me to meet him in the morning at his golf course in Palos Verdes. I was very conflicted as to what had occurred. I wondered if the sexual behavior was some kind of test and whether or not I had passed.
Obviously, he still wanted to talk to me about a job, even though I had turned his sexual advances down. From the hotel, I drove straight to my family business to speak to my father, and he gave his advice. I decided to go to the golf course the next day. Mr. Trump introduced me to the general manager, and he gave me a tour. When I got back from the tour, Mr. Trump was not there. I never saw him again. Mr. Trump called a few days later to ask if I had called the bank as he had instructed. I told him that it was Christmas Eve, and I had not done so as of yet. The general manager called me later that week and offered me a job at the golf course for half of what I had told Mr. Trump I was seeking in terms of salary.
I called Mr. Trump and told him that I was upset and that I felt I was being penalized for not sleeping with him. Mr. Trump said that he was golfing and could not discuss it at that time. In a subsequent conversation about a job, Mr. Trump told me that I should never again use his private number and that if I wanted to reach him, I should contact him through his office. Even though Mr. Trump had sexually harassed me, I still wanted to get a job within the Trump Organization. I felt that since I had made it clear to him that I was not interested in having such a relationship with him, that if he gave me a job that it would be solely on merit, and we would be able to work together.
When I contacted Mr. Trump, he asked me to send him a letter with jobs within his organization that I felt I was well suited for, which I did. When I subsequently spoke with him, he gave me the runaround. He told me that he not received the letter that I had sent him, and then told me that he could not afford to hire me as he was laying off thousands of employees. I was disappointed, but harbored no ill will towards Mr. Trump whatsoever and felt there was no point in any further attempt to get a job with Mr. Trump.
During Mr. Trump's fight for the Republican nomination, I saw and heard Mr. Trump nonstop on television and in the news. Customers at my restaurant asked about him, as they knew I was a contestant on The Apprentice. I always complimented and never said anything about what he had done at the Beverly Hills Hotel. However, this caused me a great deal of pain and anguish, and I felt the need to confront Mr. Trump and ask him to apologize for his behavior. I also thought he might have been embarrassed by his behavior, and this would provide him with the opportunity to clear the air.
I had no idea about his behavior with other women at the time. Therefore, I contacted his secretary in April of 2016 and asked if I could reconnect with Mr. Trump. I did not tell her why I wanted to speak with him. She responded that perhaps his campaign team would followup with me. I then wrote his assistant an email on April 21st, 2016, asking her to send my email directly to Mr. Trump.
In that email, I stated: Your interest in me as a potential employee meant the world to me. Your interest in me as anything more blew my mind and I lost my footing. I further said, I have been incredibly hurt by our previous interaction. I ended by stating, I hope to hear from you and wish you continued success.
Mr. Trump did not reply. Mr. Trump, when I met you, I was so impressed with your talent that I wanted to be like you. I wanted a job within your organization. Instead, you treated me as an object to be hit upon. I was incredibly embarrassed by your sexual advances and shared this information with a select few people close to me. Mr. Trump, today I feel you were interested in me only because you wanted to have a sexual relationship with me and for no other reason.
After hearing the released audio tape and your denials during the debate, I felt I had to speak out about your behavior. You do not have the right to treat women as sexual objects just because you are a star.
After the statement, when asked why she decided to come forward now, Zervos responded, "So I can sleep at night when I'm 70."