Roman Polanski’s sexual abuse case in the 1970s provisionally settled – Press Enterprise
Roman Polanski’s sexual abuse case in the 1970s provisionally settled – Press Enterprise

A tentative settlement has been reached in a lawsuit filed by a woman who claims longtime fugitive Roman Polanski sexually assaulted her in his home in the 1970s after pumping her full of tequila there and at a restaurant, despite knowing she was underage.

In court documents filed Tuesday with Judge H. Jay Ford III of Superior Court in Santa Monica, the woman’s lawyers said a “conditional” settlement had been reached with the 90-year-old filmmaker and that a motion to dismiss the lawsuit would be filed by Oct. 14. Details were not disclosed. The plaintiff is identified only as Jane Doe.

According to the lawsuit, filed in June 2023 and amended a month later in July, Doe met Polanski at a party in 1973. The alleged encounter occurred four years before the director fled the United States after pleading guilty to illicit sexual intercourse with a minor involving another victim, Samantha Geimer.

Months later, Doe accepted Polanski’s invitation to dinner after meeting him at his Benedict Canyon home, where he gave her two shots of tequila despite knowing she was underage, the lawsuit says.

Polanski later drove the two to dinner at Le Restaurant on La Cienega Boulevard, the lawsuit says. Their table wasn’t ready when they arrived, so they went to the bar, and Polanski ordered more tequila for Doe, the lawsuit says.

After they sat down to dinner, but before they ate, Doe became dizzy from the tequila and went to the bathroom feeling unwell, the lawsuit says. When she returned to the table, she told Polanski she was not feeling well and was going outside to get some fresh air, according to the lawsuit, which further states that the director followed Doe outside and drove her back to his house.

Although Doe does not remember how she got from the car into Polanski’s house, she remembers him leading her into his bedroom and her passing out on his bed, the lawsuit says. Doe remembers waking up to find Polanski in bed next to her and refusing his requests to have sex with her, the lawsuit says.

Her pleas to “please don’t do this” were ignored, and he then proceeded to remove her clothes and sexually abuse her, causing her “tremendous physical and emotional pain and suffering,” the lawsuit says.

Polanski later drove Doe home and that was the last time she saw him, the lawsuit says.

In earlier court filings, Polanski’s then-attorney Neville Johnson made several defense arguments on behalf of the director, including that the statute of limitations had been violated, that the plaintiff’s claims for damages were based on conjecture, speculation and surmise, and that the woman had accused Polanski of a crime, sexual assault, that was not brought to trial until 1990.

Court documents asked that plaintiff Jane Doe’s lawsuit be dismissed “with prejudice” – meaning it cannot be brought to trial again – and that the plaintiff “be allowed to take nothing” from Polanski.

Polanski is currently represented by attorney Alexander Rufus-Isaacs.

By Aurora