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found guilty drugging assaulting constand sexually bill cosby

mrtroutBill Cosby found guilty of drugging, sexually assaulting Constand
Bill Cosby found guilty of drugging, sexually assaulting Constand
New York Daily News

3 hrs ago

It's a victory not just for Andrea Constand — but scores of other women accusing Bill Cosby of sexual misconduct stretching back decades.

After less than two days of deliberations, a Pennsylvania jury Thursday found Cosby guilty on all counts of drugging and sexually assaulting the former Temple University staffer inside his suburban Philadelphia mansion in 2004.

The long-awaited verdict represents the first — and possibly last — criminal conviction for the disgraced comedian, despite dozens of women who've accused him of similar misdeeds.

Cosby, 80, was first charged with three counts of aggravated indecent assault in December 2015, just days before the 12-year statute of limitations on the crime ran out.

a man in a suit and tie: Andrea Constand exits the courtroom during a break in comedian Bill Cosby's retrial. AFP/Getty Images Andrea Constand exits the courtroom during a break in comedian Bill Cosby's retrial.

He quickly pleaded not guilty, claiming Constand was his willing sex partner.

Constand, 45, gave a much different account during emotional and sometimes grueling testimony spread over two trials almost a year apart.

The former head of women's basketball operations at Temple said she considered Cosby a mentor and father figure the night he offered her three unidentified blue pills he referred to as "your friends."

Constand said she thought the pills were herbal remedies for stress and was stunned and confused when they caused her words to slur and her vision to blur, she told the jury of five women and seven men in Norristown, Pa.

Constand recalled feeling powerless as Cosby groped her breasts, penetrated her with his fingers and masturbated himself with her hand.

"I wanted it to stop," Constand testified two weeks ago. "I was weak. I was limp, and I could not fight him off."

The charges against Cosby each carried a maximum sentence of up to 10 years in prison.

Considering the comedian's advanced age, his conviction could mean he'll end up spending the rest of his life in jail.

At his first trial last June, a jury deadlocked after six days of marathon deliberations.

This time around, the sequestered jury reached its unanimous verdict after a 12-day trial that included new testimony from five additional accusers, including former supermodel Janice Dickinson.

Throughout the trial, Cosby's lawyers argued Constand was a "con artist" who framed the "Cosby Show" star for money.

They fixated on the $3.38 million settlement she received to end her 2005 lawsuit and claimed she made a series of inconsistent statements.

In the end, the proof was in the pudding pop pitchman's own words.

The jurors heard that Cosby himself told police in a 2005 interview that he gave Constand a medication without explaining what it was. They also heard that he admitted during a follow-up civil deposition that he obtained seven prescriptions for quaaludes in the 1970s so he could give the now-banned sedative to women he found sexually attractive.

Cosby did not testify in his own defense during either of his trials.

Authorities originally declined to charge Cosby in 2005, but Constand's case got revived as more than 50 accusers stepped from the shadows starting in late 2014.

When prosecutors finally filed their criminal complaint, they said a major factor in their decision was Cosby's own deposition admission that he stockpiled the quaaludes.

In his depositions, Cosby said he kept the powerful drugs on hand to offer them to women, "The same as a person would say, 'Have a drink.'"

In closing arguments Tuesday, Montgomery County Deputy District Attorney Kristen Feden wrested back the "con artist" moniker that Cosby's defense lawyer Tom Mesereau gave to Constand in his opening statement.

"Yes, you did hear about a con," Feden said Tuesday as she pointed to Cosby in the courtroom gallery. "The perpetrator of that con is this man, sitting right here."

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