NORRISTOWN, Pa. (AP) — Bill Cosby’s lawyers lost another bid to cut his sex assault retrial short.
Judge Steven O’Neill rejected a defense motion that he acquit Cosby and send jurors home – the defense’s fifth bid for a mistrial. The defense asked the judge to clear the 80-year-old comedian after prosecutors rested their case Thursday afternoon.
The judge says there is “simply no grounds for a mistrial” and that Cosby’s lawyers are raising the issue too late.
Cosby’s lawyers say prosecutors haven’t proved charges he drugged and molested Andrea Constand at his suburban Philadelphia mansion more than a dozen years ago. Cosby has said his sexual encounter with the woman was consensual.
A prosecution drug expert is telling jurors that Constand could have been made woozy by either the cold and allergy medicine Benadryl or by quaaludes. Cosby previously acknowledged giving quaaludes, a now-banned sedative, to women before sex back in the 1970s.
Constand says Cosby gave her three unidentified blue pills that knocked her out and then sexually assaulted her at his suburban Philadelphia home in 2004. Cosby says he gave her Benadryl to help her relax and that she consented to a sexual encounter.
Dr. Timothy Rohrig, a forensic toxicologist, testified that Benadryl’s main ingredient can cause sedation, muscle weakness and clumsiness. He says quaaludes also have a tendency to make people sleepy.
The defense also says there’s no evidence to prove the alleged assault happened within the 12-year statute of limitations.
Prosecutors say the accuser and Cosby have both said the encounter was in 2004. Prosecutors point out Cosby was arrested in 2015, just before the deadline to charge him.
The Associated Press doesn’t typically identify people who say they’re victims of sexual assault unless they grant permission, which Constand has done.
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