Bill Cosby ordered to stand trial on sex assault charges

Bill Cosby has been ordered to stand trial on sexual assault charges relating to allegations dating back to 2004.

The confirmation came at a hearing that hinged on a decade-old police report in which a woman said the comedian gave her three blue pills that put her in a stupor, unable to stop his advances.

District Judge Elizabeth McHugh ruled that prosecutors had sufficient evidence to bring Cosby to trial, setting his arraignment for July 20, at which time the TV star will enter a plea and a trial date will be set.

Cosby, 78, could get 10 years in prison if convicted.

“Mr Cosby, good luck to you, sir,” said the judge.

“Thank you,” he replied.

Andrea Constand, the former Temple University employee who said Cosby violated her at his suburban Philadelphia mansion in 2004, was not in the court-room and the judge ruled she would not have to testify.

Instead, prosecutors had portions of her statement to police read into the record.

She told police in 2005 that the comedian penetrated her with his fingers after giving her pills that made her dizzy, blurry-eyed, and sick, with her legs “like jelly”.

“I told him, ‘I can’t even talk, Mr Cosby.’ I started to panic,” she told police.

In his own statement to police, also read in court, Cosby portrayed it as consensual sexual activity, saying Constand never said “no” as he put his hand down her trousers.

Cosby’s lawyers argued unsuccessfully that reading Constand’s statement instead of putting her on the stand would be hearsay and would deprive him of his right to confront his accuser.

Prosecutors reopened the case last year after dozens of women levelled similar allegations against Cosby.


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