Embattled comic Invoice Cosby is again in courtroom this week as his protection workforce fights to restrict the variety of accusers who can testify towards him in his sexual assault case subsequent month.
It’s anticipated to be the final pretrial listening to earlier than Cosby’s sexual assault retrial begins in April.
Cosby, now 80, is accused of drugging and sexually assaulting a lady in his Pennsylvania dwelling in 2004. A decide declared a mistrial in June after jurors failed to succeed in a verdict when Cosby first went to courtroom for the costs.
As Cosby prepares to return to trial on April 2, right here’s a take a look at the case and the way the nation’s #MeToo motion may affect it.
Cosby is accused of giving Andrea Constand, a former Temple College worker, capsules that left her incapacitated earlier than he allegedly carried out sexual acts on her with out her consent.
Constand and Cosby met whereas she was the director for the ladies’s basketball workforce at Temple, Cosby’s Philadelphia alma mater. The pair “developed what [Constand] believed to be a honest friendship,” and Constand ultimately regarded to the older comic as a mentor, in accordance with courtroom paperwork.
Constand alleged that Cosby made sexual advances towards her a number of instances, and she or he turned him down. However on one particular go to to his dwelling in 2004, Cosby gave her “three blue capsules” that blurred her imaginative and prescient and made her really feel as if she was “out and in” [of consciousness], in accordance with courtroom paperwork.
Cosby then engaged in sexual acts with Constand, whereas she couldn’t transfer or communicate, that she didn’t consent to, she mentioned.
Whereas greater than 60 girls have come ahead over time to accuse the person as soon as affectionately referred to as “America’s Dad” of sexual misconduct, Constand’s allegations are the one ones that introduced a prison case towards Cosby. Lots of the different girls’s accusations fall exterior of the statute of limitations.
Cosby and his attorneys have maintained that any interplay between the pair was consensual.
Constand sued Cosby in 2005, and the pair settled for an undisclosed quantity the following yr. Within the deposition for that case, Cosby admitted to purchasing Quaaludes and giving girls medicine and alcohol earlier than intercourse – however he mentioned each interplay was consensual, together with with Constand.
In the course of the first trial, Cosby’s protection sought to discredit Constand – pointing to inconsistencies in her story. The protection additionally famous that Cosby and Constand have spoken over the cellphone dozens of instances for the reason that alleged incident, with Constand initiating nearly all of these calls.
Cosby has a brand new authorized workforce for the upcoming trial.
Whereas a jury didn’t convict Cosby on the first trial, there may be hypothesis that the nationwide #MeToo motion towards sexual harassment, assault and misconduct may play a job with the jurors this go-around.
“That is about whether or not you imagine the sufferer or not, and the occasions of the final yr definitely make the case more durable for Cosby,” Philadelphia prison lawyer Alan J. Tauber, who is not concerned within the case, instructed The Related Press. “Extraordinary persons are seeing individuals they respect and belief undermined by horrible accusations.”
For the upcoming trial, prosecutors hope to name 19 different accusers to point out a sample of “prior dangerous acts” over 5 a long time. Prosecutors requested for 13 girls to testify within the final case, however the decide solely allowed for one.
“That is about whether or not you imagine the sufferer or not, and the occasions of the final yr definitely make the case more durable for Cosby.”
Cosby’s protection is asking the decide to once more restrict the variety of different accusers who can testify on the upcoming trial. They mentioned among the girls’s allegations date to the 1960s and can be “just about unattainable to defend towards.” Ought to the decide permit extra accusers to testify, the protection warned it will search to delay the retrial.
Cosby’s authentic trial resulted in a mistrial on June 17, 2017 after the jury deliberated for greater than 52 hours over six days and nonetheless couldn’t attain a verdict.
Prosecutors instantly promised to retry Cosby, who was free from jail on a $1 million bail.
The Related Press contributed to this report.