Thursday, 23 November, 2017

What happened in Bill Cosby's sexual-assault trial

Felix Bryan | 07 June, 2017, 00:06

A former assistant to Cosby's Hollywood agent was the first witness, testifying that the actor drugged and sexually assaulted her in a similar manner at the Bel Air Hotel in 1996.

Constand herself is expected to testify on Tuesday. Following which, many women came forward with accusation against the The Cosby Show star.

He was standing by the side of the bed, she testified.

That's when she told jurors, "I could see the bottle of lotion on the nightstand".

Johnson said that she had had the "utmost respect and admiration" for Cosby, as did millions of other Americans, especially African-Americans like herself.

Constand also is expected to testify that Cosby told her the pills he offered would help her "relax" before sexually abusing her at his home in suburban Philadelphia, said Assistant District Attorney Kristen Feden. She came forward in 2015 at a news conference with celebrity lawyer Gloria Allred, who also attended the trial Monday. Prosecutors in Montgomery County, Pennsylvania, had sought to have 13 accusers as witnesses at trial. Like the Simpson case, the jury will be sequestered.

Constand's is the only one of those cases that is not too old to be the subject of criminal prosecution, leaving the question of whether Cosby will be found guilty of sex crimes hanging primarily on her word.

After being pressed by Judge O'Neill, however, McMonagle admitted he only had lawyer's notes of Johnson's deposition in that case, not the document itself. What was his reaction, though, during these opening statements?

McMonagle told the panel of seven men and five women that while sexual assault "is a awful crime, the only thing worse is the false accusation of sex assault". "It can destroy a man", he added. "A false accusation of sexual assault, it's an attack ... on human innocence".

"She couldn't say no", Feden said.

Valentino stood on the steps of the courthouse, where she hopes and prays Cosby gets his, and told story after story of someone who told her they were sexually assaulted by Cosby the same way she and dozens of others allegedly were.

She said she lost consciousness soon after Cosby pressured her to take a large white pill.

Instead of the lovable father figure he played in his sitcom "The Cosby Show", the deposition exposed him as a man willing to invite young women into his company, ply them with drugs and booze - and have sex with them.

"We think we really know them", she said. "My truth was to be here and to be supportive, and it's not always easy to do what you feel is truthful and what you feel is right when there's so much controversy. I was afraid." When asked by the district attorney if she consented to this alleged sexual act, Johnson responded, "No, I didn't"; asked if she would have consented, she said, "No, I couldn't".

Unfortunately, we won't get to hear the comedian's response to this story.

"I was trying to say something", she said.

Johnson described telling her parents about the alleged assault.

"Therese and I were crying throughout", Valentino said after court was recessed for the day. And me saying, 'No. I asked him, 'But aren't you married?' And he said, 'Yes, but my wife stays home with my children. "It was just me and my word against his". After taking the pill, she felt like she was "underwater", she said. He said the allegations are an attack on Cosby as an individual. "And I did. And there it was". Then he forced her to touch his penis. He suggested she was "dating" Cosby and took money from him, which she denied. I felt naked but my dress wasn't off me. Shes ungrateful for all the things that have been done for her. Shes a problem.

"Mr. Cosby has never, ever under oath run from what happened that night", McMonagle said on Monday.

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