Jury begins deliberating sex charges against Bill Cosby

Elizabeth Williams
June 13, 2017

The big question going into Monday's proceedings was whether Cosby would testify — a high-stakes gamble that could have allowed him to work his charm on the jury but could have also exposed him to blistering cross-examination about some of the scores of other women who say they were assaulted by the comic once known as America's Dad.

The two sides launched into their closing arguments after the defence put on a case that consisted of just one witness - a detective - and six minutes of testimony. The jury also heard Cosby's version in the form of his police statement and his lurid deposition in her 2005 lawsuit.

Cosby couldn't risk taking the stand and being cross-examined about the 60 other accusers if he denied ever drugging or molesting anyone. They complained that prosecutors were improperly striking blacks from the jury chosen in Pittsburgh.

"She's on the phone with lawyers before she told her mom anything", he said, his voice rising regularly in agitation.

McMonagle, in his closing argument, tried to sow doubt about Constand's story.

That's what Bill Cosby said to Andrea Constand as he handed her three pills.

Cosby maintained only that he gave Constand the antihistamine Benadryl to relieve stress, and that they had consensual sexual relations, accusing her of lying. Cosby had said before the trial he would not testify.

Cosby spoke to the court for the first time since the trial began last week, telling O'Neill that he would not testify. With the prosecution having finished presenting their case on Friday (June 9), it was now the defense's turn.

During the defense closing argument, Camille Cosby and Constand sat in front rows in the courtroom, only feet apart.

"When you dance outside of marriage you gotta pay the band", McMonagle said. Three pills that incapacitated her, allowing Cosby to sexually assault her while she could not move or tell him to stop. Constand did make a brief call to Cosby at 9:45 p.m. March 16, 2004, he said.

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The brevity of the defense case contrasted with the presentation by prosecutors, who called 12 witnesses over five days of often emotional testimony.

"This isn't talking to a trustee, this is talking to a lover", he said. Constand told the jury she was merely returning his calls about the women's basketball squad at Temple University, where she was director of team operations and he was a member of the board of trustees.

If found guilty, the 79-year-old comedian could face up to 10 years in prison.

Later, he told Crime Online that a jury will have to decide Cosby's guilt based on one factor one factor alone. "This is not a civil case about money, money, money". "We're talking about all of a man's tomorrows".

McMonagle highlighted inconsistencies from Constand, who initially gave different dates for the alleged assault and varied details about events before and after.

McMonagle came across as coil of rage who at one point apologized to for his "Irish-Italian" temper during his pyrotechnic closing argument. Last week, the prosecution interviewed its witnesses, which included a former William Morris Assistant who said that Cosby had drugged and raped her in 1996.

The prosecution relied heavily on parts of the deposition Cosby gave to police in a 2005 civil suit brought by Constand. His deposition was sealed for years until a judge released parts in 2015 at the request of The Associated Press, prompting a new set of prosecutors to take a fresh look at the case.

McMonagle told the Allegheny County jury that Cosby believed his relationship with Constand was "romantic", and he attempted to lay out a timeline of contact between the two that lasted beyond when prosecutors say the alleged assault occurred in January 2004.

Mr Steele also reminded jurors about a telephone conversation in which Cosby apologised to Ms Constand's mother and described himself as a "sick man".

Other reports by VgToday

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