Cosby team triumphant, but sex crime retrial, lawsuits loom


Bill Cosby walked out of court a free man Saturday - not because he was cleared of sexual assault charges - but because a jury decided that it could not reach a verdict on charges that he drugged and molested a woman at his home outside Philadelphia in early 2004.

The embodiment of what a Cosby mistrial meant - and didn't mean - to many people might be Lili Bernard.

Cosby's trial started June 5 in Norristown, Pennsylvania.

The jury in Bill Cosby's sexual assault case ended a fifth day of deliberations Friday without reaching a verdict, testing the patience of defense lawyers and even the judge as it struggled to break a deadlock by making repeated runs through testimony given by the TV star, his accuser and others.

Read Camille Cosby's full statement about her husband's mistrial below. "He's a politician, he has to say that, but now we have seen the strategy, and that's OK".

A lawyer on the case recalled her startling account of being drugged and sexually assaulted by Cosby, but his notes revealed a glaring discrepancy in the account.

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Cosby's team declared victory and went on the attack.

In its final statements, the prosecution repeatedly referred to a deposition in a 2005 civil case filed by Constand, in which Cosby testified that he had touched Constand beneath her clothes after giving her pills.

Over the last 13 days, jurors considered the entertainer's defense that the encounter was consensual, while Constand, taking the stand and facing Cosby, testified that he had robbed her of the ability to consent. Constand, who was then an employee of Temple University, Cosby's alma mater, claims the comic gave her drugs that incapacitated her to the degree that she could not stop him from assaulting her. "Once people say they are deadlocked, then what really becomes the reason for further deliberations?"

The jury failed to reach a unanimous decision on any of the three counts against the comedian, ending the trial without a verdict.

Shortly after a mistrial was declared in the sexual assault case against comedian his wife of 53 years, Camille Cosby, lashed out on Saturday at the courts and media. She also asked for privacy for her and her family. "It's back", Wyatt told reporters outside the courthouse. "It has been restored".

McMonagle said he had always felt that this year's trial was unfair.

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Cosby had broken barriers as the first black actor to star in a network show, "I Spy", in the 1960s and, two decades later, created the top-ranked "Cosby Show". He also found success with his "Fat Albert" animated TV show and starred in commercials for Jell-O pudding.

The criminal case against Mr Cosby partly stems from the accuser's related lawsuit.

Spokesman Andrew Wyatt said Saturday that "Cosby's power is back".

The jurors also listened to the 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.

Andrea later told police that he had drugged her in such a way that she could not keep her eyes open. They said the jurors not being able to agree shows that he was innocent, which in the eyes of the law, it didn't.

Judge Steven O'Neill refused, saying there's no precedent to halt the jury's work. However, it looks as if those deciding Cosby's fate are hopelessly deadlocked. How do I describe the counsels for the accusers?

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