Harvey Weinstein arrived to a court hearing in Manhattan using a walker on Wednesday, with social media making a lot of noise about the disgraced movie producer's apparent deteriorating health. The 67-year-old is scheduled to undergo back surgery on Thursday to relieve back pain, his attorney Donna Rotunno said in court.
"We wanted him to use a walker last week and Mr. Weinstein didn't want the press to think he was seeking sympathy. He is in pain, he's having surgery, and we will be back in court on January 6 for a trial," Rotunno said after the court hearing, CNN reports.
Clips of Weinstein with the walker made their way across social media, with many users chiming in on the matter. Some wondered if he was "playing the frail old man part," while others had no sympathy for the alleged sexual predator.
you have GOT to be kidding me with this bullshit.— Matt Oswalt (@MattOswaltVA) December 11, 2019
Cosby pretends he's blind.
Weinstein pretends he's a cripple.
Is Matt Lauer gonna show up to court in a fucking iron lung? Jesus Christ these people. pic.twitter.com/tMr2yrrisk
"I suppose they were all out of sympathy neck-braces..." one Twitter user wrote.
"Where was this geriatric energy when he was making women do things they didn't wanna do?" another asked, referencing the sexual harassment and assault allegations against him.
"They got units in jails for [the] disabled," someone said bluntly.
Last week, Rotunno said the public scrutiny on Weinstein had taken a toll on his health. "This is tough on anybody going through this and dealing with the scrutiny, not only in the court room but in the court of public opinion, and this has been hard on him," she said. "He has some back issues that we're hoping to address this week, and that's where his health stands. You can tell, it's tough on him."
The court hearing on Wednesday dealt with Weinstein's bail conditions in light of new bail reforms set to take effect in 2020 after prosecutors argued he had repeatedly violated his release conditions.
Judge James Burke gave Weinstein three bail options: $5 million cash bail, a $50 million security bond partially secured at 10 percent, or a $2 million insurance company bond, each with a 72-hour surety. Rotunno said that Weinstein would take the $2 million insurance company bond, which would be secured with his original $1 million cash bail plus additional assets.
Judge Burke ruled that Weinstein must continue to surrender his passport and not apply for a new one, not travel outside the country and notify USAA when he leaves New York or Connecticut. The judge also said that should Weinstein have any further medical issues, the court would "not be terribly understanding" and asked Weinstein if he understood that if he failed to appear, a warrant would be issued for his arrest.
"I have every intention of being here," Weinstein said, adding that "this is a good thing." Burke followed up and asked Weinstein to give a yes or no answer, to which Weinstein replied, "Yes.'
The hearing came about after prosecutors said that Weinstein violated his bail conditions by mishandling his ankle monitoring system. Manhattan Assistant District Attorney Illuzi said that there were 57 violations of the ankle monitor in two months.
"The people's position is none of the bracelet violations were accidental," Illuzi said, adding that she was "shocked" to learn they were not reported at the time and that they were attempts to conceal Weinstein's whereabouts. She also told the judge that the glitches were only stopped once there was a threat of change of bail.
Weinstein's defense attorney, Arthur Aidala, said that the violations were technical glitches that have to do with a lack of reception in the Westchester area where Weinstein lives.
Weinstein has pleaded not guilty to charges he raped a woman in a Manhattan hotel room in 2013 and performed a forcible sex act on a different woman in 2006.