Cosby’s defense attempts to prove he wasn’t home for the alleged sexual assault

Bill Cosby (right) is escorted into the Montgomery County Courthouse on March 30. | SYDNEY SCHAEFER / THE TEMPLE NEWS

At the end of the second week of Bill Cosby’s sexual assault retrial, his defense team attempted to prove the comedian and former trustee wasn’t in his Montgomery County home at the time of an alleged assault in which he’s charged for.

With several travel itineraries from Cosby’s company and public relations firm from January 2004, the court heard testimony from two of Cosby’s assistants about his personal airplane and work-related travel scheduling.

O’Neill told jurors on Friday that they could begin deliberations as early as next week.

The defense also called Robert Russell, a 57-year-old motor coach operator from Montreal, to testify about Constand’s desire to become a sports broadcaster.

Tom Mesereau, Cosby’s lead attorney, argued before Russell took the stand that Montgomery County Court of Common Pleas Judge Steven T. O’Neil should allow the defense to speak to Russell about his friendship with Constand.

Mesereau said Russell has knowledge that Constand was “addicted to magic mushrooms,” and frequently smoked marijuana during his friendship with her between 2000-01. He argued that if Constand had a substance-use disorder and used other drugs recreationally, she was inconsistent in her testimony that she lived a “healthy, holistic life.”

“[Constand] tried to present herself to the jury as, ‘I’m the purest person, I only take spirulina and pure foods… I was so naive when I took pills from Mr. Cosby,’” Mesereau said.

He added that Russell said he’d heard Constand say she wanted to be a millionaire.

At the start of the trial, the District Attorney’s Office released for the first time that Constand was paid by Cosby nearly $3.4 million in a 2005 civil suit.

After listening to Mesereau’s argument, O’Neill only allowed the defense to question Russell about his claims that Constand had told him she wanted to be a broadcaster, something she did not say she was too motivated to do when she testified last week.

“She had a tremendous amount of passion about becoming a broadcaster,” Russell told the court.

Russell added that he has not spoken to Constand since she left for her job at Temple in 2002 and was unaware she had left Canada.

Debbie Meister, Cosby’s personal assistant since 2010, testified about Cosby’s private plane schedules in January 2004. Meister explained the flight logs to the jury, but confirmed she did not have any personal knowledge that he was on the plane during these times because she was not yet employed by Cosby.

A former executive assistant at a public relations firm that handled Cosby’s business also testified about Cosby’s work-related travel.

Kimberly Harjo, a former executive assistant for the Brokaw Company, testified about itineraries she prepared for Cosby in late December 2003 for his events in January 2004.

Next week, O’Neill will rule on whether a civil deposition by Constand’s friend Sheri Williams from 2005 can be read to jurors, because Williams has not responded to nine of the defense’s subpoenas since March 17.

Cosby is charged with three counts of aggravated indecent assault.

Gillian McGoldrick
can be reached at Or you can follow Gillian on Twitter @gill_mcgoldrick Follow The Temple News @TheTempleNews

1 Comment

  1. If you haven’t grasped that there are far more liars in this world than there are sexual predators, then you are a buffoon. I don’t know that Cosby is a rapist, the media does not know that Cosby is a rapist, and neither do you. I am a survivor of two instances of sexual assault as well as long-term sexual abuse. No, I did not contact the police. The message CALL FOR HELP was not in my head in my teens, nor is that message in the minds of our children: it is buried by our duplicitous, mob-pandering media. My gut reaction, when I hear an accusation that upsets me, is ALWAYS to believe the accuser. But I don’t reason with my gut, and neither should you.

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