Former actor and comedian Bill Cosby is a free man now, but could be headed back to court soon as a Pennsylvania judge declared a mistrial in Cosby’s high-profile sexual assault case.
According to The Associated Press, the news first broke Saturday morning, two days after the jury in the nationally watched case first said it was deadlocked in its deliberations.
Prosecutors immediately said they would retry the acting legend, who is accused of drugging and sexually assaulting former Temple University employee Andrea Constand back in 2004.
But as ABC News reported, Cosby maintained innocence throughout the trial. He declined to testify in his own defense, while the accuser Constand took the stand and testified for more than seven hours.
The trial lasted 10 days, while jury deliberations dragged on for five full days. However, they came to an end when it was made clear that, to some jurors at least, the prosecution was unable to prove Cosby’s guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.
USA Today stated that when Cosby and Constand heard the decision, they did not show much emotion, although Constand did smile and hug those who came to support her.
Judge Steven O’Neill dismissed the jury and thanked them for their time and service.
“We have been at this for over 18 months,” O’Neill said. “To everybody here who has done it on this county system, I thank you … With that, I bid you a farewell for this case and a happy Father’s Day for all the fathers who are out there.”
Meanwhile, Cosby’s wife, Camille, delivered a scathing statement through the family spokesman, Andrew Wyatt.
She declared District Attorney Kevin Steele “heinously and exploitatively ambitious” and had harsh words for O’Neill, too, The AP reported.
“How do I describe the judge? Overtly arrogant, collaborating with the district attorney,” the statement said.
Considering Cosby’s fame, and the lurid accusations, the world has kept its eye on this trial and expected a verdict sooner rather than later. With the shocking mistrial announcement, the wait for a verdict will continue.
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