Cosby wins right to not incriminate himself in defamation lawsuit


Bill Cosby's Mugshot (Photo credit: Montgomery County Office of the District Attorney)
Bill Cosby’s Mugshot (Photo credit: Montgomery County Office of the District Attorney)

Embattled comedian Bill Cosby continues to gain small victories in a defamation lawsuit filed in Massachusetts. Seven women are suing Cosby because he called them liars in regard to their claims that they were sexually assaulted by the comedian years ago. There has been a flurry of legal maneuvers by the Cosby defense as the time for trial comes close in four different cases. All of these court proceedings revolve around Cosby’s alleged pattern of sexual assaults against women that go back decades. In California, he is being sued by former supermodel Janice Dickerson for defamation. He is also being sued by Judy Huth in a California civil lawsuit that claims the comedian assaulted her at the Playboy mansion in 1974 when she was 15 years old. In Pennsylvania, he is facing criminal charges that could result in jail time over the alleged sexual assault of Andrea Constand, a former Temple University employee. In that case, Cosby maintained he had an agreement with a former prosecutor not to file charges since he reached a confidential agreement with Constand. However, a new district attorney reopened the case and it is rapidly proceeding towards trial.

The judge has now ruled that Cosby has the right to delay giving evidence in the Massachusetts case because there is a chance that the prosecutors in his criminal case can use that information against him during trial. US District Judge Mark Mastroianni concluded in a 13-page ruling that Cosby has a right to delay providing evidence to avoid “incriminating himself in the criminal case” by disclosing anything that may “support a conviction.”

In the past two years, more than 50 women have accused Cosby of sexual assault. He is currently on bond in the Pennsylvania case, which is the only one for which he may serve jail time.

Mo Barnes
Mo Barnes

Maurice "Mo" Barnes is a graduate of Morehouse College and Political Scientist based in Atlanta. Mo is also a Blues musician. He has been writing for Rolling Out since 2014. Whether it means walking through a bloody police shooting to help a family find justice or showing the multifaceted talent of the Black Diaspora I write the news.

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