Bill Cosby's attorney gives fiery opening statement in trial

Bill Cosby accuser calls him 'serial rapist' from witness stand

Bill Cosby arrives at the Montgomery County Courthouse before jury selection in his sexual assault retrial April 2, 2018 in Norristown, Pennsylvania. She says Cosby gave her a drink and forced her to perform oral sex as she faded in and out of consciousness.

Cosby, now 80, is accused of drugging and molesting former Temple University staffer Andrea Constand in his Cheltenham, PA, home in 2004.

Rochelle had the names of some of the women who have accused Mr. Cosby of assault written on her torso.

Mesereau said in opening statements that Constand repeatedly called and contacted Cosby in the time period after the alleged assault but before she reported the allegations to police.

"You're going to be wondering: What did she want from Bill Cosby?".

Even after the alleged assault in January 2004, Constand called Cosby as many as 60 times and visited his home alone, said Mesereau, who successfully defended Michael Jackson against child molestation charges. Only one additional accuser took the stand at the first trial.

If convicted, Cosby could face 10 years behind bars.

Thomas is one of five women - including Janice Dickinson, Janice Baker-Kinney, Chelan Lasha, and Lise-Lotte Lublin - who are expected to take the stand for the prosecution, contending Cosby drugged and preyed on them and unsuspecting women for decades. "He was forcing himself in my mouth", Ms Thomas said. "He gave her pills, she was incapable of consent, he sexually assaulted her, and he admitted it".

"I was pretty sure whatever I did was my fault", Thomas testified, adding: "I was just going to move on".

She was cross examined by the defense. She said she wanted to recount the trip for her mother and agent but destroyed it years later after seeing a psychiatrist.

Bill Cosby accuser calls him 'serial rapist' from witness stand

"He was lonely and troubled and he made a awful mistake confiding in her what was going on his life", Mesereau said.

Defense attorney Kathleen Bliss is to continue questioning Thomas on Wednesday. Rochelle, an actress, said she didn't have any bad experiences with Cosby when she was on the show, nor did she intend to physically hurt him.

Constand stiffed roommates on utility bills, racked up big credit card bills and operated a Ponzi scheme while running women's basketball operations at Temple, where Cosby was an alumnus and trustee, Mesereau said.

The previously undisclosed amount Cosby paid in the 2006 civil lawsuit Constand filed against him for allegedly sexually assaulting her was revealed Monday to be $3.4 million.

A lawyer who represented Constand in the civil case, Dolores M. Troiani, rejected Mesereau's characterization of her client, calling it a "disgrace" that the legal system permits such defenses which, she said, deter women from coming forward to report sexual assault.

"A con artist is what you get, ladies and gentlemen of the jury", Mesereau explained. "A con artist. And we'll prove it", the lawyer said.

In between trials, US popular culture was shaken by the #MeToo movement, which encouraged an increasing number of women to step forward with stories of sexual harassment or assault at the hands of the rich and powerful. The jury that time was not permitted to hear about the settlement, nor was Jackson allowed to take the stand.

Constand's acceptance of his invitations and gifts during a period of friendship of several months were the acts of a calculating woman intent on insinuating herself into his life, the defense said.

Mesereau also urged jurors to set aside any sympathy they might have for the #MeToo movement against sexual misconduct that has toppled Harvey Weinstein, Sen. Al Franken, Matt Lauer and other powerful men.

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