Harvey Weinstein pleads not guilty to rape charges; Gretchen Carlson shares her reaction

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Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Disgraced former movie mogul Harvey Weinstein appeared in a packed New York City courtroom Tuesday morning and pleaded not guilty to multiple sex crimes charges.

Weinstein -- wearing dark jeans, a blazer and a white shirt -- answered “not guilty” in a soft voice when asked how he pleads to the indictment. 

Weinstein was accompanied by defense attorney Ben Brafman and was surrounded by court officers during the proceeding, as he answered a series of questions from the judge.

For his part, Brafman stated that Weinstein "intends to vigorously defend this case."  He's due back in court September 20.

Late last month, Weinstein surrendered to New York City authorities and was arrested and charged with rape, criminal sex act, sex abuse and sexual misconduct for alleged incidents involving two separate women. He denies any instances of non-consensual sex.

Former Fox News anchor Gretchen Carlson is credited with getting the ball rolling on the #MeToo movement. Her sexual harassment settlement against former Fox News Chairman and CEO Roger Ailes, led to a series of high profile terminations, from Matt Lauer to Charlie Rose and Weinstein himself.

Carlson described what it was like to see Weinstein surrender. "I could have never predicted that we would have this tsunami of men being exposed for their actions, and women knowing that their voice matters...," she declared.  "[W]hen he walked out in handcuffs, that sent a message to the world that women matter. And that they no longer have to feel shame, and not come forward...when bad things happen to them." 

Carlson is now chair of the Board of Trustees of the Miss America Organization.

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