Cosby due in court as lawyers push to have charges dropped

PHILADELPHIA - Bill Cosby's lawyers will ask a judge to throw out the only criminal case lodged against the TV star from the dozens of accusations that he molested women.

See Full Article

The defence will argue that Cosby had a deal with a suburban Philadelphia prosecutor in 2005 that he wouldn't be prosecuted and should testify freely in accuser Andrea Constand's civil lawsuit.

That testimony, released only last year, prompted Castor's successors to reopen the case and ultimately charge the 78-year-old Cosby with felony sexual assault. Cosby has not yet entered a plea.

Cosby admitted in the deposition that he had a series of affairs with young models and actresses; had obtained quaaludes to give women before sex; and gave accuser Andrea Constand three pills before a January 2004 encounter at his home. He called it consensual but she said she was drugged and violated.

In an unusual twist, former Montgomery County District Attorney Bruce L. Castor Jr. is slated to be the defence's key witness on Tuesday. Castor insists that he forged an oral "non-prosecution" agreement in 2005 with Walter M. Phillips Jr., a Cosby lawyer who died last year.

It's not clear if anyone can corroborate Castor's account. However, Temple University board chairman Patrick O'Connor represented Cosby at the deposition. He still represents Cosby in some civil matters.

Anne Poulin, a law professor at Villanova University, said those involved in the case probably would want to hear from O'Connor "on the theory that, certainly as the lawyer representing Cosby in the civil case, he therefore needed to know what (Cosby's) exposure was to criminal prosecution before he was deposed."

Poulin believes the defence has a high bar to meet to get the case thrown out early on. At the same time, she said, "if they can win without this ever going to trial, then they've done their client a big service."

Kevin Steele, the new county district attorney, believes Cosby needed an immunity agreement - in writing - to avoid prosecution. He has said he has no evidence that one exists.

"I never made a deal that involved criminal cases that was not in writing," Lynne Abraham, a longtime judge and district attorney in Philadelphia, said Monday. "This is, to me, is an extremely unusual arrangement because the prosecutor, Bruce, has made a deal not involving a criminal case, but a civil matter."

The lawyer who served as Castor's top assistant in 2005 could also be called to testify.

Risa Vetri Ferman, now a county judge, worked on the Constand case before succeeding Castor as district attorney in 2008. She reopened the complaint last fall, asking Castor to submit any documentation of the supposed deal.

Castor pointed to a 2005 press release about his decision not to prosecute Cosby.

Steele defeated Castor in the November election to succeed Ferman. He believes that Cosby needs a written immunity deal to get the case thrown out.

It's not immediately clear when Common Pleas Judge Steven T. O'Neill will rule.

The Associated Press generally does not identify people who say they have been sexually assaulted unless they agree to have their names published, as Constand has done.



Advertisements

Latest Entertainment News

  • Ron Howard steps in for Han Solo ‘Star Wars’ film

    Entertainment Toronto Sun
    NEW YORK — Ron Howard is taking command of the Han Solo “Star Wars” spinoff after the surprise departure of directors Phil Lord and Christopher Miller. Lucasfilm announced their replacement director Thursday, two days after Lord and Miller left the project over creative differences. Source
  • Ron Howard takes helm of Han Solo 'Star Wars' film

    Entertainment CTV News
    NEW YORK -- Ron Howard is taking command of the Han Solo "Star Wars" spinoff after the surprise departure of directors Phil Lord and Christopher Miller. Lucasfilm announced their replacement director Thursday, two days after Lord and Miller left the project over creative differences. Source
  • Giant robot movies and TV shows that are better than ‘Transformers: The Last Knight’

    Entertainment Toronto Sun
    The Transformers may be robots in disguise, but there’s no hiding the fact that this franchise has morphed into a big pile of metallic dung. And it may have reached rock bottom with its latest outing, the just-released Transformers: The Last Knight. Source
  • Ron Howard steps in to direct Han Solo spinoff

    Entertainment CBC News
    Hollywood heavyweight Ron Howard has stepped in to helm the forthcoming Han Solo film, days after Lucasfilm cut loose original directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller over "creative differences" on the anticipated Star Wars spinoff. Howard, an Oscar-winner for A Beautiful Mind and known for credits as wide-ranging as Cocoon, Apollo 13, The Da Vinci Code, Frost/Nixon and Rush, will start immediately, according to reports in industry publications Variety and The Hollywood Reporter. Source
  • Gene Simmons abandons bid to trademark 'rock on' hand gesture

    Entertainment Toronto Sun
    Rocker Gene Simmons has abandoned his application to trademark his signature “rock on” hand gesture. The Kiss frontman filed an application with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office earlier in June to trademark the use of his “devil horns” hand gesture for “entertainment, namely, live performances by a musical artist; personal appearances by a musical artist. Source
  • Album review: Lorde's 'Melodrama' is 'lifeness' at its best

    Entertainment Toronto Sun
    One of Lorde's favorite words to sing is "rush" - a flexible little noun that can describe a thrill, or a stress, or even the stress of feeling a thrill. Her new album, "Melodrama," has rushes to spare. Source
  • 'Leftovers' creator Damon Lindelof in talks to develop 'Watchmen' TV series

    Entertainment Toronto Sun
    The Leftovers creator Damon Lindelof is reportedly in talks to develop a TV adaptation of the Watchmen. The producer is in negotiations with bosses at HBO to create a series based on the cult comic book series. Source
  • Newfoundland woman plans own funeral, gets celebrated band to re-do song for it

    Entertainment CTV News
    PETLEY, N.L. -- An 80-year-old woman who planned her own funeral has managed to convince a celebrated Newfoundland and Labrador band to re-record a song so it would be more appropriate for her eventual farewell. Source
  • Threats to wife of Trump-like 'Caesar' play director probed

    Entertainment CTV News
    Tina Benko, left, portrays Melania Trump and Gregg Henry, center left, portrays President Donald Trump in the role of Julius Caesar during a dress rehearsal of The Public Theater's Free Shakespeare in the Park production of Julius Caesar, in New York on May 21, 2017. Source
  • 'Bachelor in Paradise' dispute par for reality TV course

    Entertainment CTV News
    LOS ANGELES -- Modern reality television has been misbehaving since it was born. Putting aside the charmingly mild "Candid Camera" midcentury years, the reality TV era that began in the early 1990s with MTV's "Real World" has encompassed its share of questionable standards and tactics. Source