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Judge allows evidence on 'medication for sex' in Cosby trial

20 April 2018, 01:06 | Jermaine Blake

Bill Cosby's lawyers say accuser Andrea Constand is a 'con artist'

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His first trial on the charges ended past year in a mistrial after a Pennsylvania jury couldn't come to a unanimous decision.

"When you got the Quaaludes, was it in your mind that you were going to use these Quaaludes for young women that you wanted to have sex with?" asked Constand's then-attorney Dolores Troiani. He said he was given seven prescriptions for the now-banned sedative, ostensibly for a sore back.

Prosecutors have suggested he gave her something stronger - perhaps quaaludes, a popular party drug in the 1970s that was banned in the United States in 1982. "In another example, an accuser indicated that she published a fictional account of what happened with Cosby for a paycheck".

But Mesereau, who's best known for winning Michael Jackson an acquittal in his 2005 child molestation case, was incredulous as Constand denied being aware that Cosby was sexually attracted to her - even after he touched her thigh on one occasion and tried unbuttoning her trousers on another. Prosecutors in his retrial were allowed to seek testimony from as many as five other women who claim Cosby also drugged and assaulted them.

As Cosby arrived at the suburban Philadelphia courthouse Tuesday, spokeswoman Ebonee Benson told reporters that their testimony "seemed to be more colorful and more embellished" than at the first trial.

Now with Constand on the witness stand and facing more defence questions on Monday, Cosby lawyer Tom Mesereau is scouring a binder full of her police statements and prior testimony - and he's finding some inconsistencies.

Constand says Cosby, now 80, drugged and sexually assaulted her at his Philadelphia home in 2004.

Bill Cosby's lawyers have changed the way they talk about his chief accuser and her relationship with him. Lawyers said Jackson will tell of a time when Jackson and Constand were rooming on a Temple basketball trip and Constand told her she could accuse a celebrity of sexual assault to earn a payoff.

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The new jury yesterday heard testimony from Cheltenham Township police who initially investigated the case shortly after accusations by Constand, a former director of operations for the women's basketball team at Cosby's alma mater, Temple University.

Constand has testified that she saw the former TV star as a mentor and had previously rejected his advances. "This isn't about money".

In a major win for prosecutors, the judge hearing Bill Cosby's sexual assault retrial in Pennsylvania ruled Tuesday that jurors can hear the comic's prior deposition testimony in which he acknowledged giving Quaaludes to women in an effort to have sex.

Mesereau has attempted to poke holes in her story, arguing that Constand was a "con artist" who obsessed over Cosby's money and fame. She said he described how he'd touched Andrea Constand's breasts and vagina and guided her hand to his penis. The pills Cosby gave police were pink, he said.

"I'm giving Andrea time to say "yes" or "no" about an area that is right there in the question zone", Cosby testified. Her testimony prompted Cosby, sitting with his lawyers at the defense table, to open his eyes wide.

Police Sergeant Richard Schaffer read the jury a transcript of a 2005 police interview with Cosby in which he said that he had a consensual sexual encounter with Constand but stopped short of sexual intercourse. His first trial ended with a hung jury.

Another accuser, taking the witness stand after Dickinson, said Cosby prodded her to drink two shots in his Las Vegas hotel suite, then had her sit between his knees and started petting her head.

On Monday, the defense tried to cast Constand as an opportunist who baited Cosby by feigning romantic interest in him.



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