Culture

Mistrial Declared In Bill Cosby Rape Case, Jury "Hopelessly Deadlocked"

Mistrial Declared In Bill Cosby Rape Case, Jury

Cosby's lawyers have said he and Andrea Constand were lovers sharing a consensual sexual encounter.

Almost a dozen times during their deliberations, they sent questions about the the evidence or the charges to the judge, struggling to come to a consensus.

Lena Dunham has spoken out about the Cosby mistrial in a series tweets.

Camille continued to describe Cosby's accusers as "totally unethical" and the media "as blatanly vicious entities that continually disseminated intentional omissions of truth for the primary objective of greedily selling sensationalism at the expense of human life".

Cosby, who didn't testify, was charged with three counts of aggravated indecent assault, a charge that carries a maximum of 10 years in prison. Many more were still expressing outrage that the Minnesota police officer who shot Philando Castile was acquitted Friday.

During six days of testimony, jurors heard from Constand and just one other accuser, Kelly Johnson, who worked for Cosby's late agent and said he also drugged and assaulted her in 1996.

O'Neill told the jury that if they decide to talk about the case, they should remember that their deliberations are confidential and should not discuss any votes they took or anything other jurors said. Prosecutors have suggested he gave her something stronger, possibly quaaludes. Instead, Cosby emerged from the courthouse with his publicity team, which read a statement from his wife that accused the judge likely to retry him of arrogance and collusion with prosecutors. "Because he drugged her to do this", the prosecutor told jurors. The judge gave them new instructions reminding them of their duty to try to reach a unanimous decision and sent them back to the deliberation room.

The case has already helped demolish his image as America's Dad, cultivated during his eight-year run as kindly Dr. Cliff Huxtable on the top-rated "The Cosby Show" in the 1980s and '90s.

The judge sought to comfort the jurors, at least one of whom fought back tears, calling their epic deliberation "one of the more courageous acts, one of the more selfless acts that I've seen in the justice system".

Former federal prosecutor David Weinstein said Cosby's celebrity nearly certainly played a role in the jury's deliberations, perhaps to convince "two or three jurors that it's impossible to convict Dr. Huxtable, to convict Fat Albert. that he couldn't have done this disgusting thing".

Andy Lassner, executive producer of The Ellen Show, wrote " I BELIEVE YOU" to the women accusing Cosby of sexual assault.

Judge O'Neill told the defense and prosecutors that a "mistrial is neither vindication nor victory for anybody".

As the jurors left for the day yesterday, O'Neill heaped praise on them, thanking them for their dedication and the sacrifice they've made being 300 miles (482 kilometers) from home in the Pittsburgh area. Given the manner in which she was dismissed by the previous district attorney, she had no option but to file a civil suit.

"My opinion continues to be that Ms. Constand was probably the victim of a sexual assault", said Castor, whom Constand is suing for defamation.

The upcoming criminal retrial isn't the only potential legal jeopardy Cosby faces, although obviously criminal charges are by far the most serious.

The Associated Press does not typically identify people who say they are victims of sexual assault unless they grant permission. Constand has done so.



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