Jury deadlocks in Cosby trial; mistrial declared

18 June, 2017, 00:10 | Author: Kristopher Anderson
  • Actor and comedian Bill Cosby reacts after a judge declared a mistrial in his sexual assault trial at the Montgomery County Courthouse in Norristown

The jury in the sexual assault trial of Bill Cosby has deadlocked in its opinion and a mistrial has been declared by the judge.

Steel, the district attorney from Montgomery County, Pennsylvania, who brought the charges, could choose to retry the case, but prosecutors are unlikely to do so right away, according to a spokeswoman for the D.A.'s office.

Cosby said in a radio interview before the trial he hoped to resume his performing career after the Constand case was resolved.

Cosby, 79, had been charged with three counts of aggravated indecent assault.

Constand was composed on the stand under a fierce barrage of cross-examination from the defense, which sought to portray their relationship as consensual, and Cosby's accuser as a liar.

There are thirteen women who have accused Cosby of sexual assault, but only one of those women was allowed to testify in this case. It was the only criminal case stemming from dozens of accusations of sexual misconduct - all of which Cosby denies. O'Neill ordered that Cosby must remain out on bail.

During Schaffer's cross-examination, lead defense attorney Brian McMonagle zeroed in on discrepancies in Constand's accounts regarding the date of the incident, while also noting that she crossed out sentences in her sworn statement.

During her cross-examination, McMonagle exposed that Valliere was biased, and had previously expressed interest in the case through Facebook posts and comments.

Testimony began June 5, 2017 and ended June 12, the same day the jury got the case.

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After taking the pills, Constand said, she had trouble talking and difficulty moving and was suffering double vision, before briefly losing consciousness.

Jurors also asked for, and received, a definition of reasonable doubt, the threshold that prosecutors must cross to win a conviction, and reviewed testimony from Constand and her mother about phone conversations they had with Cosby after the encounter. Constand testified and was grilled by Cosby's defense over alleged inconsistencies in her story over the years. On Saturday, they came back and told O'Neill they were hopelessly deadlocked. Judge Steven O'Neill instructed them to keep working toward a unanimous decision.

Shaffer said Cosby told him that he did not have sex with Constand at any point in time, and that they engaged in "petting" during the night in question.

The fast-moving case went to the jury of seven men and five women on Day 6 of the trial after closing arguments painted different pictures of what happened between Cosby and Andrea Constand at his suburban Philadelphia estate.

Constand sued Cosby after prosecutors in 2005 declined to press charges. The judge then declared a mistrial.

But Steele said it was no accident that some of Constand's memories were faulty.

"There are some things in this case that should be fuzzy. Why?"

She had told jurors that the comedian attacked her after drugging her with pills he said would help her to "relax" during a dinner at his house in 2004. Supporters and well-wishers also gathered outside the courthouse; at times during the trial, Cosby "appeared in good spirits" as he spoke to and saluted his fans, The Associated Press reports. But TV networks had long since scrapped plans for a comeback and pulled reruns from the air after his lurid deposition testimony became public.

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