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Bill Cosby Found Guilty On Three Counts Of Sexual Assault Against Out Lesbian Andrea Constand

Bill Cosby has been found guilty on three accounts of sexual assault.

The case was brought by former Temple University basketball coach Andrea Constand, an out lesbian who said she went to Cosby’s home in suburban Philadelphia in Jan. 2004 and woke up to him assaulting her.

“I wanted it to stop,” Constand told the jury of seven men and five women. “I couldn’t say anything. I was trying to get my hands to move, my legs to move and the message just wasn’t getting there. I was weak, I was limp and I couldn’t fight him off.”

“I was really humiliated,”she added. “I was in shock. And I was really confused.”

Constand went into greater detail with what happened that night. After she’d been drugged (blue pills she said he told her were “herbal supplements”) and drank three glasses of wine, she woke up in a dazewith Cosby touching her breasts and using her hand to masturbate.

“I felt his fingers going inside of my vagina, going in and out, very forcefully,” she testified. “My next memory was getting up off the couch, seeing, my bra was up around my neck and my pants were kind of half unzipped. I had to kind of get myself together and started walking toward the door.”

Cosby has denied allegations of assault, saying their sexual contact was consensual. His defense team attempted to discredit Constand by saying she was looking to extort the actor and comedian.

“You’re going to be saying to yourself, ‘What does she want from Bill Cosby?’ and you already knowmoney, money, and lots more money,” lead attorney Tom Mesereau said in his opening statements. “She was madly in love with his fame and money.”

Constand first filed a sexual battery lawsuit against Cosby in 2005, in which she was awarded a settlement of $3.8 million but was bound by a confidentiality agreement.

Both parties were said to have broken that agreement, and the unsealed 62-page memorandum contained excerpts from Cosby’s deposition, including his acknowledgment of obtaining quaaludes with the intent of using them for sex with women. (He claimed he gave Constand Benadryl in order to help her relax.)

The 2006 settlement was used against her in the new trial, and Cosby claimed he had no idea Constand was gay until police told him in 2015.

“The only principle was money,” Mesereau told the jury. “Money, money, money.”

Five of more than 50 other Cosby accusers took the stand as part of Constand’s trial, her second after the jury couldn’t come to an agreement on thefirst attempt last year.

While Constand’s sexual identity was part of previous depositions and court documents, it was not a part of the 2018 trial, as Judge Steven O’Neill issued an order declaring the defense could not introduce any evidence of her past relationships, including an alleged romance with “a wealthy man prior to ever meeting Cosby.”

The defense further hoped to use Constand’s own queerness against her, saying she was guilty of “conceal[ment] and deceit.”

In a written response, Montgomery County District Attorney Kevin Steele refutedthat defense as a “new twist on an old argument”: “that because Ms. Constand did not reveal this most personal detail about her life she must have been asking for defendant to drug and sexually assault her.”

“Defendant seems to desire that those with a sexual orientation different from his should readily identify themselvesperhaps with a scarlet letterat their first encounter with another person,” the DA’s office wrote.

Pennsylvania’s current rape shield law specifies that “evidence of specific instances of the alleged victim’s past sexual conduct… shall not be admissible in prosecutions under this chapter except evidence of the alleged victim’s past sexual conduct with the defendant where consent of the alleged victim is at issue and such evidence is otherwise admissible pursuant to the rules of evidence.”

In 2008, a Pennsylvania court found a woman’s sexual identity inadmissible under their rape shield law. In that specific case, the convicted rapist sought to admit his 19-year-old victim’s relationship with another woman as proof she was questioning her sexuality and therefore consented in order to “determine whether she was homosexual or heterosexual.”

But in the past,rape shield laws in other states (such as Ohio) have decided “evidence of lesbianism” waived the protection of the rape shield law and were admitted as such.

Constand originally met Cosby in 2002 at a Temple University basketball game. She said she considered Cosby, a Temple grad who also sat on their Board of Trustees, a mentor who she went to for career advice. She said Cosby made inappropriate sexual advances on her three times before the 2004 rape. After the night in question, she moved back to Canada to live with her parents where she eventually told her mother what happened, leading to the civil suit.

If given the maximum sentence, Cosby could spend up to 30 years in prison, 10 years for each convicted count.

Photo by Corey Perrine-Pool/Getty Images

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