Bill Cosby's lawyers push to get sexual assault case thrown out

NORRISTOWN, Pa. -- Bill Cosby and his lawyers went to court Tuesday to try to get the sexual assault case against him thrown out because of what they say was a binding commitment by a previous district attorney not to prosecute him a decade ago.

See Full Article

The current district attorney has said he has no record of such an agreement.

Cosby, 78, arrived for the hearing in a black SUV just before 9 a.m., dressed in a tan suit and tie. Two men held his arms for support as he walked up a ramp to the Montgomery County Courthouse, and one carried Cosby's cane. The comedian chatted with his handlers while ignoring reporters' questions.

Cosby is accused of drugging and violating former Temple University athletics employee Andrea Constand at his suburban Philadelphia mansion in 2004.

In a barrage of allegations that have destroyed Cosby's image as America's Dad, dozens of women have accused the former TV star of drugging and sexually assaulting them since the 1960s. But this is the only case in which he has been charged.

Cosby's lawyers contend that he had a deal with then-District Attorney Bruce L. Castor Jr. in 2005 that he wouldn't be prosecuted and that he could testify freely in Constand's civil lawsuit. Castor said at the time that there was insufficient evidence to charge Cosby.

Damaging testimony from that lawsuit was released last summer, prompting Castor's successors to reopen the case and ultimately charge Cosby. He could get 10 years in prison if convicted.

Cosby admitted in the deposition that he had affairs with young models and actresses, that he obtained quaaludes to give to women he wanted to have sex with and that he gave Constand three pills at his home. He said he reached into her pants in what he insisted was consensual contact.

In an unusual twist, Castor was called to the stand at Tuesday's hearing. Castor has insisted that he worked out an oral "non-prosecution" agreement in 2005 with Walter M. Phillips Jr., a Cosby lawyer who died last year.

Castor was not immediately asked about such an agreement Tuesday. But he defended his decision not to bring charges, testifying that he saw Constand's year-long delay in reporting the allegations, inconsistencies in her statements and her contact with a lawyer before going to police as red flags.

Castor said Constand's delay in going to authorities was of "enormous significance" in his consideration of the case. He said it thwarted his ability to test her hair or fingernails for evidence she was drugged.

Still, Castor said, he investigated the case thoroughly because he wanted to show authorities in Constand's native Canada that celebrities don't get preferential treatment in America.

Kevin Steele, the newly elected DA who is pursuing the case, has said Cosby would need an immunity agreement in writing to get the case thrown out. He has said he has no evidence one exists.

Anne Poulin, a law professor at Villanova University, said the defence has a high bar to meet to get the case thrown out early on. But "if they can win without this ever going to trial, then they've done their client a big service."

It was not immediately clear when Common Pleas Judge Steven T. O'Neill would rule.



Advertisements

Latest Entertainment News

  • Fyre Festival fiasco lives, dies on social media

    Entertainment Toronto Sun
    In this day and age, the young and beautiful live and die on social media. And it’s been a sudden and ugly death for the ill-fated Fyre Festival, a multiday music, art and culture party that promised “an invitation to let loose and unplug with the likeminded” on the Bahamian island of Exuma. Source
  • Shannen Doherty's breast cancer in remission

    Entertainment Toronto Sun
    Shannen Doherty is in remission following a two-year battle with breast cancer. The 46-year-old former Charmed actress took to Instagram on Friday to reveal the news in an emotional post, thanking her followers for taking part in her cancer journey. Source
  • TV biopic on Whitney Houston's daughter Bobbi Kristina Brown in the works

    Entertainment Toronto Sun
    A biopic about Whitney Houston and Bobby Brown’s tragic daughter Bobbi Kristina Brown is in the works. Stuck in the Middle star Joy Rovaris will play Bobbi Kristina, while singer Demetria McKinney will portray Houston. The Wire’s Hassan Johnson has been cast as Bobby Brown in the film Bobbi Kristina. Source
  • 'Orange Is the New Black' season 5 uploaded to torrent site, hacker claims

    Entertainment Toronto Sun
    SAN FRANCISCO — A hacker who claimed to have stolen the upcoming season of Netflix’s hit series Orange Is The New Black, and demanded a a ransom from the streaming service, has posted it online, according to MassLive.com. Source
  • DMX checks into rehab

    Entertainment Toronto Sun
    DMX has checked himself into a rehabilitation facility after cancelling a series of gigs. The rapper voluntarily entered a treatment centre in southern California on Thursday, according to TMZ.com. DMX’s manager Pat Gallo confirmed the Party Up (In Here) hitmaker was taking time off to focus on his health. Source
  • Bahamas-based Fyre Festival fizzles, promising refunds and better luck next year

    Entertainment CBC News
    In this day and age, the young and beautiful live and die on social media. In the case of the ill-fated Fyre Festival — a multiday music, art and culture party that promised "an invitation to let loose and unplug with the like-minded" on the Bahamian island of Exuma — it's been a sudden and ugly death, chronicled in real-time on YouTube and filtered through Facebook. Source
  • Fizzled Fyre Festival promises refunds but partygoers 'skeptical'

    Entertainment CBC News
    In this day and age, the young and beautiful live and die on social media. In the case of the ill-fated Fyre Festival — a multiday music, art and culture party that promised "an invitation to let loose and unplug with the like-minded" on the Bahamian island of Exuma — it's been a sudden and ugly death, chronicled in real-time on YouTube and filtered through Facebook. Source
  • DJ Khaled has 'Spider-Man: Homecoming' cameo

    Entertainment Toronto Sun
    Hip-hop star DJ Khaled’s movie resume has been given a big boost after reportedly landing a cameo in the forthcoming Spider-Man: Homecoming film. The All I Do Is Win hitmaker and prolific Snapchat user took to the social media site earlier this week to share footage of himself and his entourage on a “top secret” set at a store in New York City. Source
  • 13 Reasons Why: Is it 'exposing the truth' or a 'primer' on teen suicide?

    Entertainment CBC News
    It's a death scene unlike most others on television. A 17-year-old girl kills herself in a bathtub and the audience, which includes a significant young adult following, sees every moment. The Netflix series 13 Reasons Why, based on the best-selling YA novel by Jay Asher, has scored fans around the world for its raw portrayal of high school life and teen suicide. Source
  • TV biopic on Whitney Houston's daughter Bobbi Kristina in the works

    Entertainment Toronto Sun
    A biopic about Whitney Houston and Bobby Brown’s tragic daughter Bobbi Kristina Brown is in the works. Stuck in the Middle star Joy Rovaris will play Bobbi Kristina, while singer Demetria McKinney will portray Houston. The Wire’s Hassan Johnson has been cast as Bobby Brown in the film Bobbi Kristina. Source