Prosecutor Seeking Protection Order in Lee Rape Case

T.E. McMorrow

A private investigator working for Jason Lee, a Goldman Sachs executive accused of raping a 20-year-old Irish woman in East Hampton last summer, met with the alleged victim on Wednesday, harassing and frightening her, according to Kim Shalvey, the prosecutor handling the case.

Appearing in county court in Riverside on Friday, Ms. Shalvey asked Justice Barbara Kahn to grant an order of protection for the alleged victim that would prevent any future contact. "She feels that everything she does is being watched," Ms. Shalvey said.

Andrew Lankler, who joined Edward Burke Jr. as co-defense counsel for Mr. Lee several months ago, said that the investigator who contacted the alleged victim was "an experienced female," whom his firm had vetted through a service in England.

"We took every precaution" he told Justice Kahn, explaining that the visit to the Irish woman's house was made at 11 a.m. "The complainant was provided a picture of an injury of a preexisting nature. She said she did not want to go forward with the matter," he said. "There was no harassment."

Ms. Shalvey painted a different picture of the woman's reaction to the visit, saying that she had immediately contacted Ms. Shalvey, apparently traumatized. She said the injury in the photograph was not the same as those allegedly caused by Mr. Lee during an early morning attack on Aug. 20 at a Clover Leaf Lane house. She said that a witness who was at the party where the alleged attack occurred was contacted by another agent for Mr. Lee "who was wearing a wire."

The party started when Mr. Lee and a friend from the Bronx met several students at Georgica restaurant who were celebrating the end of their summer jobs and their upcoming return to Ireland. Mr. Lee was accused of raping the woman in a bathroom after the party had moved from the restaurant to the hot tub and pool at the house.

When Mr. Lee was first arraigned in East Hampton Town Justice Court on Aug. 21, Dan Cronin, the prosecutor that day, did not seek an order of protection for the alleged victim, normally a routine event in cases where a defendant is accused of a violent crime, such as rape in the first degree, one of the charges Mr. Lee faces. Such orders prohibit not only direct contact, but also "third person contact." The reasoning for not requesting the protective order, Ms. Shalvey explained, was that the woman was due to leave the country the next day, and an order was thought not necessary.

Justice Kahn said, "There is nothing improper with a defense attorney contacting a claimant." She said she would rule on the request at Mr. Lee's next court appearance.

Mr. Lee, a managing director at Goldman Sachs, has been on leave since the arrest.