Bill Cosby’s new legal team has been granted permission to delay the comedian’s sex assault retrial until next year (18).
The criminal case retrial for the alleged 2004 rape of Andrea Constand was due to start on 6 November (17), but the judge overseeing the proceedings has agreed to give his lawyers more time to prepare.
At a hearing in Norristown, Pennsylvania on Tuesday (22Aug17), Judge Steve O’Neill announced the retrial will now commence between 15 March and 1 April (18).
News of the delay comes a day after Michael Jackson’s former defense lawyer Thomas Mesereau joined Cosby’s legal team, following the departures of Angela Agrusa and Brian McMonagle, who officially withdrew as the embattled funnyman’s representatives at the hearing.
Mesereau joins Kathleen Bliss and Sam Silver as Cosby’s new attorneys.
Cosby was at the hearing with his current and former defence lawyers, as Mesereau told Judge O’Neill he would be filing a motion to have the retrial rescheduled because of previous obligations.
The original proceedings ended in a mistrial in June (17) when jurors couldn’t agree to convict Cosby on three felony charges of second-degree aggravated indecent assault. A retrial was requested immediately after the mistrial was declared.
Cosby still faces 10 years behind bars if he’s found guilty of drugging and sexually assaulting Constand in his Pennsylvania home in 2004. The comedian and his lawyers maintain the sex he had with the accuser on the night in question was consensual.
His new top attorney, Mesereau, famously and successfully defended Michael Jackson during his 2005 child molestation trial.
– Cover Media0