Published: Tue, June 06, 2017
Global Media | By Abel Hampton

Cosby's image as father, family man on the line at sex trial

Cosby's image as father, family man on the line at sex trial

Comedian Bill Cosby was accompanied by actress Keshia Knight Pulliam as he arrived to a Pennsylvania court on June 5 to contest charges that he drugged and assaulted Andrea Constand, a former Temple University employee.

Cosby faces three counts of aggravated indecent assault.

A prosecutor warned the jury not to fall into the trap of confusing the 79-year-old comedian with the beloved family man he played on TV. She will take the stand this week and tell her story in public for the first time.

The defense will seek to undermine Constand's credibility by highlighting her delay in coming forward and apparent willingness to continue to meet Cosby after the incident.

A he said, she said case? There, McMonagle said, she brought him incense and bath salts, they had dinner, cognac and brandy by the fire and she lay in bed with him.

Cosby, in the deposition, said he didn't remember her. She said he invited her to a show in the early 1970s, gave her wine in the limousine and later what she thought was an aspirin, and then sexually assaulted her when she was incapacitated.

"Johnny feels Mr. Cosby has done so much for historically black colleges over his career, and it's important for him to show that support and say 'Thank you, ' because he has not been found guilty of anything", Wyatt said.

Prosecutors are telling jurors in Bill Cosby's sexual assault trial that the actor has already admitted sexually violating an unconscious woman more than a decade ago.

And, that she changed the date from mid-March to mid-January of 2004.

The Bill Cosby sexual assault trial kicked off Monday before a packed audience inside a tension-filled suburban Philadelphia courthouse. Michael Bilello, who heads Centurion Strategies, a PR, and crisis management shop, said, "If he [Cosby] wants to have his final chapter written the way he wants to be recalled, he has to engage the public".

Cosby's wife, Camille, was absent as the TV star, carrying a wooden cane and grabbing his spokesman's arm for support, walked past dozens of cameras into the courthouse. "In reality, we only have a glimpse of who they really are".

Cosby built a good-guy reputation as a father and family man, on screen and off, during his extraordinary 50-year career in entertainment. He created TV characters, most notably Dr Cliff Huxtable, with crossover appeal among blacks and whites alike.

In the deposition, Cosby said he had engaged in consensual sexual activity with Constand - and that he had obtained Quaaludes in order to give them to women with whom he wanted to have sex.

In opening statements, McMonagle launched an attack on Constand's credibility, saying she originally told police she had never been alone with Cosby before the assault, that she went to dinner with Cosby and other friends then went back to his house before the assault and that she had no contact with Cosby following the assault. They were selected from a different county because of defense concerns about pre-trial publicity in Montgomery County, Pennsylvania, where the district attorney who is trying the case, Kevin Steele, pledged to re-open the Cosby investigation during his 2015 election campaign.

The district attorney at the time of the alleged assault declined to press charges, and in 2006 Cosby settled a civil suit with Constand that remained sealed for nearly a decade.

Cosby's lawyers tried repeatedly to get the case thrown out.

Cosby said he does not intend to testify.

And they argued that the delayed prosecution makes the case impossible to defend, given that witnesses have died, memories have faded and Cosby, they say, is blind.

Experts in sexual assault say victims often behave in inconsistent ways for a variety of reasons.

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