Baldwin’s “stalker” gets 30 days for contempt
November 13, 2014 | The Columbia Journalist
Genevieve Sabourin got handed 30 days in jail before her trial even finished.
The Canadian bit-actress and publicist accused of stalking Alec Baldwin is being tried this week in Criminal Court in Manhattan. She has refused to plead guilty for over a year. She’s even turned down slap-on-the-wrist bargains from the prosecutor that would have meant no jail time if she promised to respect the rules of her restraining order.
As Sabourin, who has insisted she and Baldwin were in a romantic relationship, has said previously, “You don’t plead guilty to something you didn’t do.”
On Tuesday Baldwin testified that the two had dinner once as a favor to their mutual friend Martin Bregman, and that Sabourin was Bregman’s mistress. After their dinner, Baldwin said, Sabourin started to harass him and his wife Hilaria.
But Sabourin said she and Bregman were just friends, and that she first met Baldwin in 2000 when she worked as a publicist on the film “The Adventures of Pluto Nash,” on which he had a cameo. She testified that ten years later, the two reconnected. The “professional charmer,” she said, brought her to Central Park and a show before he took her to dinner. Then, she said, they returned to her hotel and made love.
“It was more than romantic,” she said during questioning by her lawyer Todd Spodek. “It was perfect.”
The two maintained a long-distance affair that included phone sex, she said. After Baldwin became distant, she wanted closure.
The theatrical 41-year-old was charged with contempt after she started the day interrupting her defense lawyer, arguing with the prosecution and demanding that Bregman come to court and testify.
When Judge Robert Mandelbaum warned that she could be held in contempt for disrupting the court, Sabourin retorted, “I’ve been held in contempt for the past two years.”
Mandelbaum snapped. “That’s it,” he yelled. “You have made it impossible for this court to proceed.” Sabourin will face a month of jail time for disregarding the rules.
The case is proceeding as a bench trial, so no jurors have been swayed by Sabourin’s emotional flare-ups. The outbursts continued from Tuesday, when she interrupted Alec Baldwin’s testimony to yell that he was “lying.”
Sabourin had a hard time directly answering Spodek’s questions. At one point, she said Baldwin gave her his personal phone number on a piece of paper underneath a table. Later, she said he told her how to contact him verbally. Between questions, she also rambled about her career, Baldwin’s displays of affection and her lack of trust in the legal system.
People throughout the courtroom—a court officer, a journalist, even Sabourin’s lawyer—put their heads in their hands at various points in the day, seemingly exhausted.
Losing his patience, Mandelbaum made a last-ditch attempt to bring her back on track. “I’m trying to understand your testimony,” he said. “I’m going to ask you very specific questions. Please answer them.”
The prosecutor’s cross-examination was short and mainly focused on tying Sabourin to the online accounts associated with harassing messages. Sabourin said she didn’t know if she had been hacked and that many Twitter accounts had been set up to mock her.
“I am the joke of Canada,” she said.
Sabourin still hasn’t found the closure she has said she wanted from Baldwin. “I wish I knew his side of the story,” she testified. “Fifty per cent of the story’s missing. So how can I know what happened?”
Sabourin is charged with aggravated harassment in the second degree, harassment, and stalking. Mandelbaum is expected to deliver a final verdict on her case on Thursday.
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