The lawsuit accusing Trump of raping a 13-year-old girl, explained - 2016-11-03
It's not uncommon for victims of sexual assault to want to preserve their anonymity, and dropping a lawsuit doesn't mean admitting that the case had no merit. Jill Harth, who sued Trump for sexual assault in 1997, still stands by her claims even though she dropped the lawsuit. And it would indeed have been an intense couple of days for Johnson — Bloom said that her firm's website was hacked, that Anonymous had claimed responsibility, and that death threats and a bomb threat came in afterwards.
It was the end of an incredibly strange case that featured an anonymous plaintiff who had refused almost all requests for interviews, two anonymous corroborating witnesses whom no one in the press had spoken to, and a couple of seriously shady characters — with an anti-Trump agenda and a penchant for drama — who had aggressively shopped the story around to media outlets for over a year.
Those shady characters — a former reality TV producer who calls himself "Al Taylor" and a "Never Trump" conservative activist named Steve Baer — had been mostly unsuccessful in getting the media to bite. There are a few very good reasons for that, which the Huffington Post's Ryan Grim succinctly summed up: Taylor and Baer have been really sketchy about the whole thing, and since the accuser is anonymous, journalists can't do anything to verify her claims. The only journalist who has actually interviewed Johnson, Emily Shugerman at Revelist, came away confused and even doubting whether Johnson really exists.