Jury gets case after Cosby painted as predator, victim
NORRISTOWN, Pa. (AP) — The jury in Bill Cosby's sexual assault case began deliberating today in the first big celebrity trial of the #MeToo era, weighing charges he drugged and molested a woman at his suburban Philadelphia home 14 years ago.
The panel of seven men and five women got the case after receiving final legal instructions from the judge.
Deliberations got underway after a marathon day of closing arguments Tuesday that portrayed the comedian both as a calculating predator who is finally being brought to justice and the victim of a multimillion-dollar frame-up by a "pathological liar."
Cosby gave a quick fist pump and sashayed toward well-wishers chanting, "We love Bill!" as he arrived at the courthouse on a rainy morning.
The two-week trial pitted Cosby, the 80-year-old former TV star once revered as "America's Dad," against Andrea Constand, a former Temple University sports administrator who testified that he knocked her out with three pills he called "your friends" and molested her at his suburban Philadelphia mansion in January 2004.
"The time for the defendant to escape justice is over. It's finally time for the defendant to dine on the banquet of his own consequences," prosecutor Stewart Ryan told the jury.
Cosby's lawyers argued the charges were based on "flimsy, silly, ridiculous evidence."
The jury heard testimony from five other women who said that Cosby drugged and violated them, too. Before excusing the jurors to deliberate, Judge Steven O'Neill told them they could consider the women's testimony as possible evidence that Cosby had a pattern of predatory behavior, but he forbade them from using it to find the comedian is "a person of bad character."