Cosby Trial: Deadlocked Jury Deliberates on Day 5

Lawrence Kim
June 19, 2017

The jury is still out on Bill Cosby's sexual assault trial but on Friday, as deliberations continued for a fifth day, the actor and comedian took to Twitter to thank his supporters.

In that case, 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 jury made a statement explaining they had reached a deadlock in front of the court before it was requested by Judge Steven O'Neill that they return to deliberations.

He instructed them to rely on their collective recollection.

Passed along since early Thursday, the word that the panel was at an impasse had teased the possibility of a mistrial for tired lawyers, court staff and onlookers, and the crowd of Cosby supporters outside the Montgomery County Courthouse in Norristown. The defence said the jury had struggled with the charges long enough, twice asking for a mistrial Friday.

Three questions pertained to a review of parts of Cosby's account to authorities, and two were requests to rehear Constand's account and testimony. Earlier, the jury reported that they were deadlocked and could not reach a verdict, but the judge had them continue deliberating. "He keeps telling them to go back and give me a verdict". Cosby said he never took the powerful sedative, preferring to keep it on hand for social situations.

Cosby testified in a 2006 deposition that he got seven prescriptions for the powerful sedative in the 1970s for the objective of giving them to women before sex.

Cosby is charged with three counts of aggravated sexual assault against Andrea Constand, a former Temple employee.

In one passage re-read for jurors, Constand's lawyer asked Cosby if he recalled giving Quaaludes to Therese Serignese after meeting her in Las Vegas in 1976.

Prosecutors say his prior use of Quaaludes shows that Cosby had knowledge of what he was doing when he gave her the pills.

Cosby, who gave the deposition as part of Constand's lawsuit against him, said he got seven prescriptions for the powerful sedative in the 1970s for the objective of giving them to women with whom he wanted to have sex.

"Was it in your mind you were going to use the Quaaludes for young women, plural, that you were going to have sex with?" a questioner had asked. Mr Cosby was asked.

Quaaludes was a highly popular party drug in the 1970s that was banned in the 1982.

Serignese is now one of Cosby's most high-profile accusers.

Judge Steven T. O'Neill then read the definition, which included a doubt that would cause a "reasonable person" to "hesitate before acting on a matter of importance" as well as a doubt that was not "manufactured to avoid the carrying out of an unpleasant duty". By contrast, Constand has accused Cosby of giving her pills that incapacitated her and rendered her unable to stop his advances, though she said she tried.

They've deliberated almost 40 hours since getting the case. The comedian's legal counsel has already made several motions for mistrial, citing the deadlocked jury's inability to come to a timely verdict.

"If it's a hung jury, it's a hung jury", Majeed said. Cosby has denied all the charges.

She also asked Cosby's representatives for free tickets for her and her family to see Cosby's stand-up show in Toronto in August, half a year after the alleged assault.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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