Cosby tweets thanks, defense demands mistrial over impasse

  • Cosby tweets thanks, defense demands mistrial over impasse

Cosby tweets thanks, defense demands mistrial over impasse

The deadlocked United States jury battling to reach a verdict in Bill Cosby's sexual assault trial asked the judge today to define "reasonable doubt" and again asked to hear from the fallen star's testimony.

The surprise requests sparked an argument in the courtroom between Cosby's lawyers, who demanded a mistrial, and the judge, who said he could not interfere with the deliberations until the jurors tell him again that they can't reach a verdict.

Jurors in Bill Cosby's sexual assault trial say they're deadlocked on charges the comedian drugged and molested a woman in 2004, but a judge ordered them to keep trying to reach a unanimous decision.

Cosby has been on trial for the alleged sexual assault of Andrea Constand, the former director of operations for Temple University's women's basketball team.

Brian McMonagle, the lawyer for the star of the 1980s TV hit The Cosby Show, has made four separate mistrial motions based on the length of the jury's deliberations. After three days of deliberation, the jury reported that it has reached a #Deadlock and was sent back to continue deliberations. Since then, approximately 60 women have come forward to report cases of sexual assault against Cosby. In those interviews, Cosby admitted to sexual contact with Constand and said they had previously had a romantic encounter.

They also asked the court to read back more of Cosby's civil lawsuit deposition testimony - the third time they have sought to rehear his statements about his alleged assault against Andrea Constand almost 13 1/2 years ago.

Specifically, the jury of seven men and five women asked Judge Steven T. O'Neill to redefine the legal concept of "reasonable doubt".

Question: What is reasonable doubt? Cosby, 79, pleaded not guilty to the three counts.

Jurors did hear Cosby's side of the story - but not in his voice.

But outside the Norristown courthouse where a half-dozen Cosby supporters lined the walkway holding signs that read "We Love Bill Cosby", the news was met with cheers and chants of "Free Cosby Now".

But when speaking about her career plans one night at his home, the sweater-wearing actor known as "America's Dad" gave her three blue pills that he said were herbal and would help her relax, she testified. He maintains that their sexual encounter was consensual.

"Put them down, they're your friends".

Constand said the pills made her drowsy, blurred her vision and her legs feel "rubbery". Cosby said he used to give the once-popular sedative and party drug to women with whom he wanted to have sex. The question led court watchers to question whether one or two jurors remain holdouts, with others attempting to convince them of a unanimous verdict - and whether the remaining doubt in the minds of holdout jurors could considered reasonable.

Defense attorneys said those were not the actions of a sexual assault victim, and suggested she was lying.

"It's good for the prosecution", she said, flatly.

In the case of a mistrial, the Montgomery County, Pennsylvania, district attorney could choose to retry the case, but it's unlikely that prosecutors would move immediately for an retrial, according to a spokeswoman for the Montgomery County District Attorney's Office.

The case was reopened in 2015 after a federal judge unsealed Cosby's deposition testimony taken in a lawsuit brought against him by Constand. The investigation was moved to Montgomery County, but did not result in charges at the time.

"You have a spokesman who is explaining to the media what a mistrial means - at least what he believes a mistrial is", O'Neill told Cosby in court.