Bill Cosby goes on trial Monday on alleged sexual assault charges. It will be the first major trial after nearly 60 women have come forward to accuse the comedian of sexual abuse.
Andrea Constand, who’s lawyers gave permission to use her name, accuses Cosby of sexually assaulting her in an incident near his home in Philadelphia in 2004. Constand, claims that Cosby invited her to his home to discuss career opportunities and gave her wine and three blue pills to alleviate stress which “left her unable to speak or move after 30 minutes.” She says Cosby lying on a couch with her and engaging in sexual activity. Constand was 31 at the time, Cosby was 66.
Cosby was charged in December 2015 with three counts of aggravated indecent sexual assault. The crime is a second-degree felony and if convicted, Cosby could be sentenced up to 10 years in prison.
Cosby did meet Constand in 2001 at his alma mater Temple University in Philadelphia where he serves on the Board of Trustees. He has since resigned from this position.
Constand manages the women’s basketball team and had frequented the TV celebrity’s home at dinner parties during her time at Temple. Constand maintains that she rejected Cosby’s sexual advances twice before the alleged assault. She quit her job and moved back to Canada several months after the alleged assault. On January 13, 2005, a year after the alleged assault, she told police of the incident citing flashbacks had triggered her memory.
A criminal investigation was opened in 2005 but was closed due to lack of evidence. At the time, Constand pressed her allegations and Cosby and came to a settlement with included a non-disclosure agreement.
The current trial to begin tomorrow was a result of the unsealing of federal court documents from Constand’s 2005 lawsuit against Cosby. In the deposition transcripts, Cosby admits to providing drugs and having sexual relations with her and other women on different occasions but maintains that the sexual relationship was consensual.
Constand will be the main witness in the trial. Cosby said he will not take the stand, during an interview with Sirius XM’s Michael Smerconish last month.
.Cosby’s attorney, Walter Phillips, has tried repeatedly to get the cased dismissed citing a 12-year delay and other legal caveats. Judge Steven O’Neill has denied their motions.