Donald Trump has dismissed a sketch of the man Stormy Daniels says threatened her over her alleged affair with the president, calling the man “nonexistent” and the actress’s claims a “total con job”.
Ms Daniels, an adult film star who says she had an affair with Mr Trump in 2006, has claimed she was threatened by a stranger over the alleged relationship years later. She recently released a composite sketch of the man she says accosted her in a parking lot.
“A sketch years later about a nonexistent man,” Mr Trump tweeted on Wednesday. “A total con job, playing the Fake News Media for Fools (but they know it)!”
The statement links to a tweet from another user, which suggests the man in the sketch closely resembles Ms Daniels’ ex boyfriend.
Mr Trump has denied having an affair with Ms Daniels, whose real name is Stephanie Clifford. He also claims he was unaware of a $130,000 payment his attorney, Michael Cohen, made to Ms Daniels in the run-up to the election – a payment Ms Daniels says was meant as “hush money” to keep her silent about the affair.
Ms Daniels has sued Mr Trump and Mr Cohen in an attempt to invalidate a nondisclosure agreement she signed in 2016. Along with her media-savvy lawyer, Michael Avenatti, she has participated in several high-profile interviews to drum up interest in the case.
In a Tuesday-morning appearance on The View, Ms Daniels repeated the story of the man she says threatened her in a parking lot in 2011. She claims the incident came shortly after she divulged details of the alleged affair to InTouch magazine.
“Leave Trump alone,” she says the strange man told her. “Forget the story.”
Looking at her baby daughter, he added: “That’s a beautiful little girl. It’d be a shame if something happened to her mom.”
Ms Daniels also released a sketch of the man, which she created in partnership with forensic artist Lois Gibson. She described him as standing 5’9”, with sandy brown hair.
Mr Avenatti offered $100,000 to anyone who could identify the alleged perpetrator. He later increased the reward to $131,000.
“In my experience, there is nothing better in litigation than having a completely unhinged, undisciplined opponent who is prone to shooting himself in the foot,” Mr Avenatti tweeted on Wednesday, shortly after Mr Trump’s tweet. “Always leads to BIGLY problems…like new claims (i.e. defamation). LOL.”
White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders has said she had “no knowledge” of the alleged incident.
“Obviously we take the safety and security of any person seriously, certainly would condemn anyone threatening any individual,” she said last month.