A Hollywood producer accused of sex crimes was remanded in custody on Tuesday after a judge called him a potential danger to society.
Eric Weinberg, best known for his work as co-executive producer of the TV show Scrubs, was taken away in handcuffs by a congressman after pleading guilty to 18 counts of rape, forced oral copulation, sexual assault, false imprisonment on no had pleaded guilty. Assault and sexual penetration by a foreign object.
Weinberg was arrested again this month after prosecutors expanded previous charges against him to include the allegations of five other women. He was released in lieu of $5 million bail after being arrested in July.
More than half a dozen women have made allegations over the past seven years that Weinberg, 62, lured them to his home, often under the guise of a photo shoot, before restraining and sexually assaulting them, according to police interviews and records of The times.
He called him a danger to society and certain women, Deputy Dist. atty Marlene Martinez told a judge Weinberg used his status as a Hollywood producer and writer to “manipulate these women.” When she asked for him to be remanded in custody, she said he was a risk of absconding and needed to be locked up.
Martinez said that in addition to Jane Doe’s five victims included in the indictments against Weinberg, at least two other women have made allegations that are being investigated by the Los Angeles Police Department and the department has received 70 leads.
Philip Cohen, an attorney for Weinberg, said his client has proven he is not a flight risk because he has been under investigation for some time and has remained in the jurisdiction. Cohen argued that electronic surveillance and house arrest were viable alternatives.
Weinberg was originally arrested on July 14 in connection with allegations of sexual assault, including rape, between 2012 and 2019. LAPD Capt. Kelly Muniz said the department has identified at least eight women who may have been Weinberg’s victims.
Following that arrest, he was released in lieu of $3.5 million bail before being arrested a second time on October 4 on broader charges with bail increased to $5 million.
Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Victoria Wilson on Tuesday agreed with the prosecutor, naming Weinberg a potential serial rapist. She declined the suggestion that he be held at his home, noting that some of the alleged crimes took place there.
Weinberg’s lawyers have denied any wrongdoing by their client, calling the women’s statements a “blatant smear campaign” with “unscrupulous and baseless allegations” designed to paint him in the “most horrific light”.
Micha Star Liberty, a Bay Area civil rights attorney representing some of the accusers, said in a statement that she was “grateful that the prosecution acted to promote accountability.”
“The significant number of casualties and the horrific impact inflicted on these women will not go unchallenged,” she said. “We will not rest until there is justice.”
According to police and court records, Weinberg lured women from Los Feliz cafes, supermarkets and a cake shop to his home on Edgemont Street. Detectives have said Weinberg would approach women in their 20s and 30s and arrange photoshoots with them. Sometimes he talked about his career in Hollywood.
After one encounter, a woman began using a Facebook group to warn others about Weinberg’s alleged conduct, according to a statement filed with family court. Los Angeles police investigated Weinberg twice on suspicion of sexual assault prior to his arrest in July, records show.
LAPD investigators previously presented prosecutors with cases alleging Weinberg raped women in April and August 2014, but district attorneys declined to prosecute because they presented insufficient evidence, according to court filings and police.
Weinberg worked as a producer or screenwriter on 92 episodes of Scrubs from 2001 to 2007. He also produced Veronica’s Closet, Californian and Anger Management, and Men at Work. Danny Masterson, who has also been accused of sexually abusing women, starred in the lead role. Masterson is on trial in the same downtown courthouse for rape, and is also being represented by Cohen.
https://www.latimes.com/california/story/2022-10-25/eric-weinberg-has-5-million-bail-revoked-in-sex-charges-case Eric Weinberg has $5-million bail revoked in sex crimes case