1 of 4 | Lawyers for former president Donald Trump (pictured in April at his deposition in New York City) on Thursday filed the paperwork requesting a new trial or a lower monetary figure for the damages already awarded in when he lost a civil suit accusing him of rape. File Photo by John Nacion/UPI | License Photo
June 8 (UPI) -- Lawyers for former president Donald Trump on Thursday filed the paperwork requesting a new trial or a lower monetary figure for the damages already awarded when he lost a civil suit over sexual assault.
The $5 million in damages were "excessive," Trump's lawyers stated in the court filings.
A jury awarded writer E. Jean Carroll $5 million in damages in late May, after finding Trump sexually assaulted and later defamed the former Elle magazine columnist.
Trump has also appealed the verdict in that case, in addition to the penalty.
Carroll contends Trump forced her into a dressing room in a Manhattan department store in the 1990s and raped her.
Trump repeatedly has denied meeting her.
Carroll has a separate defamation suit against Trump pending in the court system, and is seeking no less than $10 million in that case.
In Thursday's filing, Trump's lawyers asked a judge to reduce the financial penalty to no more than $900,000 or order a new trial.
The request centers on the jury finding Trump guilty of sexual assault and not rape.
"Such abuse could have included groping of [Carroll's] breasts through clothing or similar conduct, which is a far cry from rape. Therefore, an award of $2 million for such conduct, which admittedly did not cause any diagnosed mental injury to [Carroll], is grossly excessive under the applicable case law," the filing reads.
The $2 million portion of the award is for battery, while the remaining $3 million is for defamation.
Carroll's lawyer Robert Kaplan pushed back against the claims in the filing Thursday, telling NBC News the jury "carefully considered the evidence that Ms. Carroll presented" and that "Trump did not put on a single witness of his own."