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Bill Cosby Trial: Judge Rules Only One Additional Accuser Will Testify

Image: Bill Cosby Trial: Judge Rules Only One Additional Accuser Will Testify

Comedian Bill Cosby arrives at the Montgomery County Courthouse for a pretrial conference related to his sexual assault case in Norristown, Pennsylvania on Dec. 13, 2016. (Dominick Reuter/AFP/Getty Images)

By    |   Friday, 24 Feb 2017 01:46 PM

Only one additional Bill Cosby accuser will get to testify in the comedian's sexual assault trial involving a former Temple University employee instead of the 13 prosecutors wanted, a county judge ruled Friday.

Montgomery County Judge Steven O'Neill granted the Cosby defense team the rare motion victory in his upcoming trial, the Philadelphia Daily News reported. Prosecutors have said they needed the alleged victims' testimonies to establish Cosby's reported history of misconduct.

The trial pits the longtime entertainer, 79, against Andrea Constand, who charged in 2005 that Cosby had drugged and assaulted her a year earlier at his suburban Philadelphia mansion.

Prosecutors said that 13 women were selected out of the more than 50 who have publicly accused the once entertainment giant of assaulting them in an effort to show he was a serial sexual predator, the Daily News wrote.

Cosby's defense team vigorously fought the prosecutor's efforts, charging that all of the allegations against him were unproven and some, dating back five decades, were too old to disprove, according to the newspaper.

O'Neill agreed to allow the testimony of one victim who alleged that Cosby assaulted her in 1996 in Los Angeles, The Associated Press reported.

In an earlier ruling, O'Neill ruled that jurors will be allowed to hear Cosby's deposition from Constand's 2005 sexual battery lawsuit, the AP reported. The deposition, which was originally sealed, covered the entertainer's extramarital affairs and sexual encounters dating to the 1960s, the news agency said.

The married Cosby, best known for the hit 1980s television series "The Cosby Show," claimed that his encounter with Constand, a former Temple basketball team employee, was consensual. But she told police in 2005 that Cosby gave her three unmarked pills, then she drifted in and out of consciousness as he assaulted her, the AP reported.

The Daily News reported that Pennsylvania law allows for testimony about so-called "prior bad acts" if it establishes a common scheme or pattern, but judges must weigh the value of such unproven claims against the threat of unfairly prejudicing a jury.

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Only one additional Bill Cosby accuser will get to testify in the comedian's sexual assault trial involving a former Temple University employee instead of the 13 prosecutors wanted, a county judge ruled Friday.
bill cosby, trial, accuser, judge
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2017-46-24
Friday, 24 Feb 2017 01:46 PM
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