Mistrial declared in Bill Cosby sexual assault case

The judge sitting over the case declared a mistrial after the jury deliberating the case was found to be in deadlock. The declaration amounts to a blow for the dozens of women who have accused Cosby of sexual assault.

Photo by: AFP
Photo by: AFP

The trial marks a steep fall from grace for an entertainer known for his role as a lovable father and obstetrician on the hit TV series "The Cosby Show."

Updated Jun 18, 2017

A US judge declared a mistrial in Bill Cosby's sexual assault case, after the jury deadlocked following more than 50 hours of deliberations over whether to convict the fallen TV star on Saturday.

The move amounts to a victory of sorts for the 79-year-old pioneering black actor, who had faced spending the rest of his life in prison if convicted on three counts of aggravated indecent assault against 44-year-old Andrea Constand at his Philadelphia mansion in January 2004.

TRT World's Ediz Tiyansan reports from Norristown, Pennsylvania.

The jury appeared unable to agree on which version of the night in question to believe: Constand's or Cosby's. They spent days asking to have testimony read back, including Constand's testimony at trial as well as the first report she made to police in 2005.

They also reviewed statements Cosby made about the incident under oath during Constand's civil lawsuit in 2005 and 2006. Cosby chose not to testify at trial.

A blow to accusers

About 60 women have accused Cosby of sexually assaulting them, effectively ending the long career of the entertainer once known as "America's dad" for his role in the 1980s television hit "The Cosby Show."

This case was the only one to result in a criminal trial, largely because the other accusations were too old to prosecute.

It is also a blow to the dozens of women who have said they were sexually assaulted by Cosby. Several accusers were in court all week awaiting a verdict and wearing buttons that read "We Stand in Truth."

Cosby has said any sexual activity was consensual. He still faces at least four civil lawsuits from at least 10 accusers.

TRTWorld and agencies