Four small clear bags, each containing different sort of pill, were shown to the jury Thursday, and submitted as evidence, in Commonwealth v. William H. Cosby. These, the court learned, were given to Cheltenham Township police, unsolicited, by Bill Cosby in January 2005 after he provided a statement in response to Andrea Constand’s allegation that he drugged and sexually assaulted her a year earlier in his suburban Philadelphia home.
There’s decided irony in a man facing three counts of aggravated indecent assault—as well as a chorus of women reporting he drugged and sexually molested them—voluntarily handing police what appeared to be the contents of his medicine cabinet. It’s one of the many telling details arising from day four of the Cosby trial, one that focused on the “he said” of the “he said-she said” dynamic that inevitably animates sexual assault trials.
Cosby is not expected to testify. Instead, his words, as recorded in police reports and a lurid sworn deposition, are being used by the prosecution to build its case. In this context, they are illuminating Bill Cosby’s strange and troubling schematic of what constitutes “consent.”
For most of the morning and early afternoon, witness Sgt. Richard Schaffer of the Cheltenham Township police, who investigated Constand’s 2005 allegation, took the stand. On Jan. 26 that year, Schaffer, along with the chief of police, traveled to New York City to interview Cosby. By then, the case was front-page news, a shocking accusation against a beloved comedian and celebrated family man. Cosby, who…Read More