Published: Fri, April 27, 2018
Culture | By Wayne Carr

Cosby team says there's a verdict

Cosby team says there's a verdict

American stand up comedian and actor Bill Cosby convicted of drugging and molesting a woman.

It was the second trial he faced for the charges; his first trial in 2017 ended in a mistrial due to a deadlocked jury.

A jury outside Philadelphia convicted the "Cosby Show" star on Thursday (early Friday morning, NZT).

The 80-year-old comedian is accused of drugging and violating a woman at his suburban Philadelphia home in 2004.

Cosby could get up to 10 years in prison on each of the three counts of aggravated indecent assault. Some cried on the stand recounting how Cosby attacked them while they were in drug-induced stupors, and others attempted to discredit main accuser Andrea Constand by detailing instances of supposed deceit and inconsistencies.

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Prosecutor Kristen Feden also blasted Cosby for smirking while she talked about his accusers, saying.

Besides Bounce TV, Cosby's ties to Atlanta include a scholarship he and his wife endowed; AJC writer Rosalind Bentley reported in 2014 that the Cosby Chair for the Humanities at Spelman College, funded in part by a $20 million gift that Bill and Camille Cosby gave to the school in the 1980s, was suspended amid a raft of sexual assault allegations. Thirteen Jane Doe witnesses had been deposed and were ready to testify on her behalf for the criminal trial that never materialized.

Cosby's retrial took place against the backdrop of #MeToo, the movement against sexual misconduct that has taken down powerful men in rapid succession, among them Harvey Weinstein, Matt Lauer, Kevin Spacey and Sen. But a decade later, a judge unsealed Cosby's transcript for the deposition he gave in the civil case. Constand then filed a civil suit against Cosby, and they settled out of court for a considerable sum - $3.38 million - that would remain a secret until brought to light at the retrial this April. Steele told the judge Cosby has a plane and might flee.

Cosby's defense team argued that their interaction was consensual.

"The most important person in our team was Andrea Constand", Steele, the district attorney, told reporters.

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She strode across the courtroom pointing inches away from Cosby as he sat wide-eyed at the defense table.

And that could have been the end of it for Constand, even though she knew then she was not the only woman to say Cosby had drugged and sexually assaulted her.

Cosby's new authorized staff, which was headed by famed Michael Jackson lawyer Tom Mesereau, did not show Constand was "grasping" and needed to extort cash out of Cosby.

Bliss also suggested that Constand and Cosby were having an affair, and that she was the aggressor, "cavorting around with a married man old enough to be her grandfather". She compared the dozens of accusations against Cosby to a "witch hunt" and a "lynching".

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