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Bill Cosby attends trial on charges of sexual abuse

She said they acted out a scene in a script in which a tipsy woman embraces and kisses a man, which made her feel uncomfortable. Judge Steven O'Neill shut down that line of questioning.

In 1996, under the pretence of providing her with acting tips, Johnson testified that Cosby invited her to a bungalow her was renting at the Hotel Bel Air. He said that Constand's initial allegations were investigated in 2005 and found to be insufficient at that time. Yet when she went to the police almost a year later, Mr. McMonagle said, she told them that she had not tried to contact him.

"The night that the tone of the relationship changed for me was the night that I went up to his house in Beverly Hills that he was renting off of Canon Drive, and he had fixed me a drink", she alleges. She claims Cosby offered her pills too, then took advantage of her sexually as well.

During the first day of the trail, prosecutors have tried to paint the man once known as America's dad as someone who had a history of sexually violating unconscious women.

According to the prosecution, in that incapacitated state she couldn't consent and Cosby molested her.

On Tuesday, Ms Johnson's mother, Pattrice Sewell, bolstered her daughter's story, telling jurors that Ms Johnson was distraught during a telephone call in 1996, fearing Cosby was trying to get her sacked from her job working for the comedian's agent. Powerful opening statements. A crying witness. Cosby said previously that he will not testify, but his accuser Andrea Constand is expected to take the stand.

The jury consists of seven men and five women.

He has also suggested the case against him is motivated by racism and politics. He created TV characters, most notably Dr. Huxtable, with crossover appeal among blacks and whites alike. His TV shows, movies and comedy tours earned him an estimated $400 million.

It was the unsealing of that deposition in 2015 that prompted prosecutors to reopen the Constand criminal investigation, more than a decade after it was first closed. Dozens came forward to say he had drugged and assaulted them.

Pennsylvania prosecutors brought criminal charges against Cosby in late 2015, just days before the statute of limitations was to run out.

In a deposition that had been unsealed, Cosby acknowledged he had obtained Quaaludes, a sedative, to give to young women with whom he wanted to have sex.

“He wouldnt tell me what it was, ” she testified.

"I can't say anything, but there are certain things that I look at, and I apply to the situation, and there are so many tentacles", he said. "We'll see what the evidence is".

Inside, he faced some of his accusers.

Those involved in the case worry about duplicating the media frenzy that dominated O.J. Simpson's murder trial. The cameras that dominated Simpson's trial aren't allowed in Pennsylvania courtrooms, but scores of photographers will be lined up outside the courthouse.

"We've had an O.J. hangover for many years", said Loyola Law School professor Laurie Levenson.

“Did anybody tell you to get selective amnesia about this case?” McMonagle asked.

Afterwards, she said, "I felt really humiliated and I felt really confused".

Constand, who is Canadian, claimed the alleged incident happened when she went to Cosby's mansion in the suburbs of Philadelphia.

But Cosby's defence lawyers said their client was a victim.

Cosby has denied any wrongdoing and said the encounter with Constand, who worked at Temple University, his alma mater, was consensual. As he listened, Cosby, who says he is legally blind, cupped his hands on the handle of the slender wooden cane that he has carried throughout months of pretrial hearings.

First and foremost, prosecutors in the Cosby trial are hoping that Johnson's story will help shatter the public's long-standing public persona as a trustworthy and loving father figure.


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