Disgraced comedian Bill Cosby is facing another sexual assault allegation in court after being released from jail last year. Here’s what you need to know:
Why is Bill Cosby back in court? Is he facing charges?
Cosby is being sued by Judy Huth, who claims the comedian sexually assaulted her in the 1970s. This is a civil case and Cosby has not faced any charges for her allegations in because of the statute of limitations in California.
Huth’s trial dates back to 2014, but was delayed as Cosby fought criminal charges over separate allegations that he sexually assaulted Andrea Constand in 2004. Those charges eventually landed Cosby in jail, but he was released in 2021 after the Pennsylvania Supreme Court overturned his conviction. on the grounds that he had a deal with a former prosecutor that should have prevented him from being charged in the first place.
What are Huth’s claims?
Huth alleged in her 2014 lawsuit that Cosby sexually assaulted her at the Playboy Mansion when she was 15.
The lawsuit said Huth and a friend, who was 16, met Cosby in Lacy Park, California “around 1974” when they noticed he was filming a movie there. Cosby, who allegedly learned their age, invited Huth and her friend to his tennis club and then to a house, where he served them alcohol, according to the lawsuit. Cosby then allegedly drove the girls to the Playboy mansion, telling them to lie about their age if asked.
While at the Playboy Mansion, the lawsuit says Huth had to use the bathroom, and Cosby “directed her to a bathroom in a bedroom near the playroom.” When Huth came out of the bathroom, Cosby allegedly sat on a bed and told him to sit next to him. “He then began to sexually assault her by trying to put his hand down her pants, then taking her hand and engaging in a sexual act without her consent,” the lawsuit states.
Huth alleges that she suffered “psychological damage and mental anguish” as a result of the alleged assault, and she is seeking damages.
What did the Cosby team say?
Cosby’s attorneys say he “does not deny socializing with the plaintiff at the Playboy Mansion”, and a photo shows Cosby and Huth there, but he denies sexually assaulting her. Cosby also “vehemently denies that the plaintiff was a minor,” the attorneys said.
The comedian’s legal team questioned Huth’s credibility, particularly after they adjusted the timeline of his allegations. Before the trial began, Huth said the alleged assault happened in 1975, not 1974, so she would have been 16, not 15. Cosby’s lawyers argued the case should have been filed accordingly, complaining of a “trial by ambush” and saying that based on Huth’s earlier timeline, they obtained Playboy Mansion visitor logs from 1974, not 1975, to refute his account, rolling stone reports. Evidence suggests Huth and her friend were not at the Playboy Mansion in 1974, they say.
“You work, you work, you work to create a defense, and then all of a sudden, at the last minute, it’s bait and switch,” Cosby’s attorney Jennifer Bonjean said. The Associated Press. The judge declined to dismiss the case but ordered Huth and her friend to provide more depositions before jury selection began.
Why does Huth say she adjusted her timeline?
Huth says she revised her timeline for the alleged assault based on new evidence, which helped clarify when Cosby filmed the movie let’s do it again in Lacy Park. His lawyers also suggest that the defense knew the alleged incident happened at 1975 [should this be 1974?] From the beginning.
Should Cosby testify?
Cosby is not expected to testify nor will he attend the trial, according to his attorneys, although he has already provided a deposition. Opening arguments are scheduled to begin June 1. Cosby’s attorney is also representing R. Kelly. Meanwhile, Huth is represented by renowned attorney Gloria Allred, who has represented numerous alleged victims of sexual abuse.
Are there any other Cosby cases going on?
In early March 2022, the United States Supreme Court declined to hear an appeal of the Pennsylvania Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Cosby’s conviction. Outside of the Huth lawsuit, however, Cosby was also sued in federal court in October 2021 by actress Lili Bernard, who alleges he drugged and raped her in 1990. He has denied her allegations.
Dozens of women have accused Cosby of sexual assault, and many lawsuits against him have been settled out of court. But the Huth case, according to USA todayis “the latest civil action in state court that Cosby faces.”
Cosby’s accusers expressed dismay when he was released from prison last year, along with Victoria Valentino, who accused Cosby of rape, tell ABC News, “I am deeply distressed by the injustice of all this.” Although Cosby has not been charged in the Huth case, Valentino said The New York Times that for the comedian’s alleged victims, this lawsuit “could be our last stand for justice and see accountability come to fruition in our stand against Bill Cosby.”