June 15, 2017

The Cosby jury says it's deadlocked.

The judge gives them an "Allen charge" and sends them back for more deliberation.

Cosby will not be convicted. I said that when I first read about the opening arguments, but the theater must proceed through its stately arc.

125 comments:

Bay Area Guy said...

Cosby's olive-complected, boisterous, emotional, NOT-BLACK, defense attorney must be a legal genius, I say.

John Tuffnell said...

He won't be convicted but he won't be cleared. But the prosecution also won't try the case again.

They will muddle on in ambiguity which is probably appropriate given the known facts.

If it wasn't Cosby or someone else famous, he probably would have been convicted. And now everybody knows Dr. Huxtable is a disturbed and rather pathetic man.

Bad Lieutenant said...

It's interesting to see when you will choose to post an opinion, ex cathedra as it were based on your Authoritah as an Emerita, and when you will resolutely refuse to give an opinion on a legal matter. Usually it's the opposite of what people want.

Earnest Prole said...

I see reports of the defense attorney's incompetence were premature.

Dude1394 said...

It sounds like he should not be convicted. Way too much hand-waving going on to put someone in jail for 30 years.

Snark said...

Actually what Althouse said was that he would be aquitted. Self-flattering imprecision noted.

Left Bank of the Charles said...

What's the best guess - holdout for acquittal or conviction?

This may be another case where the trial is going to have to be the punishment. There's an angle here that maybe hasn't been considered. What if Cosby was doing the drugs too? The women don't remember...


Hagar said...

I would have been be more impressed with this quest for "justice" if it had happened 10-20 years sooner.

Achilles said...

He may get off, but he will be penniless before long a la OJ.

Wilbur said...

I have tried cases with heavy media coverage, at least for the market it was within. I learned very quickly that the media very often doesn't understand the big picture of what's going on, and focuses on things that really aren't integral to the case at all. I've scratched my head wondering if they were reporting on the same trial I was in.

Michael K said...

If it wasn't Cosby or someone else famous, he probably would have been convicted.<

If he were not famous and rich he would never have been charged or sued. This has all the earmarks of a hit job by former willing partners.

Achilles said...

Wilbur said...

I've scratched my head wondering if they were reporting on the same trial I was in.

Gell-Mann effect.

I just assume the reporter in ANY story is completely ignorant of what is important.

robother said...

The olive complected coil of rage strikes again! No jury of anyone's peers can resist its reasonably doubtful charms.

Quaestor said...

Michael K. wrote: This has all the earmarks of a hit job by former willing partners.

Dead on.

Krumhorn said...

Wanna see my surprised face?

{0\0}
...o.

- Krumhorn

Yancey Ward said...

I am guessing the deadlock is likely fairly balanced- most people do not have the ethical fortitude to hold out against a great majority running against them. This is likely to end in a mistrial now.

eric said...

He was already judged guilty in the court of public opinion.

We suck.

Tank said...

Wilbur said...

I have tried cases with heavy media coverage, at least for the market it was within. I learned very quickly that the media very often doesn't understand the big picture of what's going on, and focuses on things that really aren't integral to the case at all. I've scratched my head wondering if they were reporting on the same trial I was in.


My experience is the same for any case that had any media coverage.

Eric the Fruit Bat said...

That deadlock would break in minutes if the judge threatened to feed the jurors nothing but Taco Bell.

Krumhorn said...

Actually what Althouse said was that he would be aquitted. Self-flattering imprecision noted.

It's true that our hostess predicted that he would be acquitted. It remains to be seen if that prediction works out. However, implicit in an acquittal is a failure to convict. In that respect, it appears that she was right. I rather imagine that Casey would take either outcome without a quibble.

- Krumhorn

Quaestor said...

My experience is the same for any case that had any media coverage.

I have noted that over the last several decades reportage of trials has declined steeply. Is that because the media often employ law school grads as reporters, or is it just another symptom of the general decadence of American journalism?

Krumhorn said...

So would Cosby.

- Krumhorn

clint said...

"Wilbur said...
I have tried cases with heavy media coverage, at least for the market it was within. I learned very quickly that the media very often doesn't understand the big picture of what's going on, and focuses on things that really aren't integral to the case at all. I've scratched my head wondering if they were reporting on the same trial I was in."

I'm not a lawyer... but I was on a jury once that got a lot of local media coverage. And I had the same experience -- the local reporter was sitting through the same trial I was, but the articles got really basic facts wrong. Like what alleged facts went with what counts/charges.



Re: deadlock and Allen charges...

After several days of deliberations, we were in a three-way deadlock (4-4-4 with a lesser-included-charge as one option) and told the judge so. Another half a week of deliberations and we had a unanimous verdict. So it does happen.

Francisco D said...

Jury nullification?

I have a hard time believing that the lovable Dr. Huxtable could do what he was charged with. Jurors may feel the same way.

A lot of this doesn't make sense. Why did he have to drug various women to have sex? He probably had more groupies than your average NBA player. In order to believe the stories, you have to believe he is a truly sick human being.

I am not advocating innocence or guilt, just confusion.

David Baker said...

Well, I love his practiced I'm-a-helpless-blind-man walk.

Good lesson for lawyers defending rapists who wear glasses.

David Begley said...

Cameras are new to Nebraska courtrooms. Sexual assault trial of a former Creighton basketball player is next month.

Snark said...

"After several days of deliberations, we were in a three-way deadlock (4-4-4 with a lesser-included-charge as one option) and told the judge so. Another half a week of deliberations and we had a unanimous verdict. So it does happen. "

That's interesting. Did it feel like a compromise verdict, or did people leave feeling like the extra deliberation brought you to a better and more shared view of the facts?

khesanh0802 said...

@Quaestor I think the answer is that legal reporting , like all reporting today, has deteriorated to the point that you might expect more accuracy from a high school paper. Apparently journalism schools do not teach how to search for facts anymore.

khesanh0802 said...

If they ever did!

DanTheMan said...

>>Why did he have to drug various women to have sex? He probably had more groupies than your average NBA player.

Rich people shoplift.

Why? No idea.

David Baker said...

"Why did he have to drug various women to have sex?"

Saves time. Allows instant kink.

Mark said...

"Why did he have to drug various women to have sex?"

You are assuming that the drugs were to get them to have sex. Plenty of people get drunk or take various drugs not only to get high, but because they think it will enhance the sex.

Rabel said...

Nuke him from orbit. It's the only way to be sure.

Earnest Prole said...

This has all the earmarks of a hit job by former willing partners.

Pro tip: When the number of accusers exceeds twenty, the smoke has turned to fire. When the number exceeds fifty . . .

Michael K said...

Why did he have to drug various women to have sex? He probably had more groupies than your average NBA player.

Any evidence ? That was an era, and this is not that different, when lots of young women in the entertainment industry see an older make star as a stepping stone.

Do some reading about Hollywood.

This would be a good place to start.

Now, why these guys participated is another matter. Cosby was not alone.

I think his talks about black families set him up for a hit job.

Bob Loblaw said...

Pro tip: When the number of accusers exceeds twenty, the smoke has turned to fire. When the number exceeds fifty . . .

Pro tip: When there are millions of dollars involved your pro tip is out the window.

Bad Lieutenant said...

Hey Earnest,

What happened to those zillions of accusers of Donald Trump? I'll admit he hasn't sued them, though you'll in turn admit that he's got other fish to fry; but meanwhile they all seem to have disappeared like Gorillas in the Mist.

Sometimes it's a fire, sometimes it's a smoke grenade.

Francisco D said...

Mark wrote: "Plenty of people get drunk or take various drugs not only to get high, but because they think it will enhance the sex."

As one gets older, as I have, alcohol has the opposite effect from when I was in my 20's and 30's.

I gave up MJ well over 40 years ago. I recall that it did enhance sex, but only with the right partner.

My other 60's drug experiences are too long past to recall. LOL!

Michael K said...

"When the number exceeds fifty . . ."

They also call it "a feeding frenzy." Do you ever see ads for asbestos cases on TV ?

Do you know how long asbestos has been banned? The curve of deaths is near zero now.

Why still advertise ? More worried well as plaintiffs.

Earnest Prole said...

When there are millions of dollars involved your pro tip is out the window.

Thousands of famous, rich men are serial philanderers but somehow manage to avoid fifty rape accusations.

Earnest Prole said...

Or even one.

Brookzene said...

"If he were not famous and rich he would never have been charged or sued. This has all the earmarks of a hit job by former willing partners."

Didn't he testify before to drugging women and then having sex with them? Didn't he say something that they were in a state between "refusal and consent"?

Earnest Prole said...

Bill Clinton's three accusations were credible, so why not Bill Cosby's fifty?

FullMoon said...

Didn't he testify before to drugging women and then having sex with them? Didn't he say something that they were in a state between "refusal and consent"?
6/15/17, 1:55 PM


NO.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

Left Bank of the Charles said...There's an angle here that maybe hasn't been considered. What if Cosby was doing the drugs too? The women don't remember...

I think I know what you mean, but for certain obvious values of "doing" the answer is yes--he has admitted to consuming the drugs. He obtained prescriptions for some of them, I think, and said he used the drugs to help sleep when on the road performing (full schedule, late nights, jet lag, etc).
At any rate being under the influence oneself is not a defense against intentionally drugging and assaulting another person, so I'm not sure that angle gets you anywhere useful. If he claimed not to remember things well because of his admitted drug use or something like that, maybe that'd help. I haven't followed the trial closely but I take it part of his defense (generally) is that some of the women took the drugs willingly/knowingly, so maybe saying "we both intentionally got wasted and I don't have a good sense of what happened after that and she probably doesn't, either" is a tactic his defense pursued.

Robert Cook said...

"I have noted that over the last several decades reportage of trials has declined steeply. Is that because the media often employ law school grads as reporters, or is it just another symptom of the general decadence of American journalism?"

I'd guess it's because of the overall ongoing decline in American journalism, which can be blamed directly on the insistence of the media owners that the news be profitable. When you're trolling for readers' and viewers' attention to increase your circulation or ratings in order to command better ad rates, journalism becomes merely a product, and corporations will always compromise the quality of their product by cutting costs to increase profits. This means fewer (or no) editors and fact-checkers, emphasizing the most salacious or sensational aspects of a story, a reliance on stringers, the need for "instant" reporting, which is often inaccurate and is not thought throgh, and so on.

Robert Cook said...

"Apparently journalism schools do not teach how to search for facts anymore."

Searching for facts costs money, money that can't be spared by the owners of the media organs.

FullMoon said...

Thousands of famous, rich men are serial philanderers but somehow manage to avoid fifty rape accusations.

6/15/17, 1:53 PM


Name five.

Bob Loblaw said...

At any rate being under the influence oneself is not a defense against intentionally drugging and assaulting another person, so I'm not sure that angle gets you anywhere useful.

When two people do drugs together and have consensual sex, that's not rape.

MaxedOutMama said...

I always think about how I would feel if I were a juror. Both in this case and in the teen suicide case, the problem is that the jurors agree that something wrong was done by the defendant, but does the charge accurately address the bad deed? They don't want to excuse, but they also have trouble convicting of the charged crime.

And where there is a doubt, it is supposed to go to the defendant.

Even if Cosby, by some wild chance, were convicted, wouldn't the Allen charge assist him on appeal? This is a very dicey case in the first place, and after a point, a judge that refuses to accept deadlock is using some sort of pressure to change the situation. The jurors' declaration that they had no consensus on any of the counts after lengthy deliberations, the jurors' preceding requests for evidence review which show a conscientious and thorough attempt to examine the matter, and the overall situation seem to tip this one to me. This verdict is not about evidence - it is about judgment.

I'm sorry - after a point you are just holding the jury judicially hostage. It IS coercive. You just can't coerce a guilty verdict. I can utterly see an appeals court striking any guilty verdict.

FullMoon said...

When two people do drugs together and have consensual sex, that's not rape.
6/15/17, 2:07 PM


Seems to be, if you are a male, now days.

steve uhr said...

Stupid prosecutor brings unwinable case and everyone assumes the other women are lying as well.

GrapeApe said...

This was all a money play. No idea or opinion about guilt, but much like the accusers of President Trump, they all came at once. If someone is so aggrieved, file the dang suit in close proximity to the alleged offense. The farther in time you distance your allegation from doing a damn thing about it, this less I believe you. Sorry, but you don't get a thirty year free pass.

Larry J said...

Brookzene said...
"If he were not famous and rich he would never have been charged or sued. This has all the earmarks of a hit job by former willing partners."

Didn't he testify before to drugging women and then having sex with them? Didn't he say something that they were in a state between "refusal and consent"?


Bill Cosby has an estimated net worth of $400 million. That can inspire quite a few people who hope for "jackpot justice". There's an old story about a city bus driver who was involved in a minor traffic accident. He refused to open the bus doors until the police arrived. When asked why he wouldn't let anyone off of the bus, he replied that he was keeping new "victims" from getting on the bus.

As to using drugs during sex, that was and still is fairly common in some circles. What's unclear is whether they willingly used drugs during sex or, as they now claim, that he drugged them and then had sex with them without their consent. The problem is there doesn't seem to be any proof one way or the other, just countering claims. Normally, the burden of proof is on the accuser but that seems like an out of date standard today.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

Robert Cook said...I'd guess it's because of the overall ongoing decline in American journalism, which can be blamed directly on the insistence of the media owners that the news be profitable. When you're trolling for readers' and viewers' attention to increase your circulation or ratings in order to command better ad rates, journalism becomes merely a product, and corporations will always compromise the quality of their product by cutting costs to increase profit

...but if we're talking about a decline and you're explaining a decline as a response to a set of facts you'd have to argue that those facts didn't exist in the past. Did news corporations not have to make a profit in the past? Maybe you want to say they were loss leaders for a bigger corp, but that's still avoiding the fact that they were happy to not make a profit back then but not happy with that now. Blaming the market/market capitalism for the current behavior of a corp. while not addressing that the same corp. and market capitalism existed back when the corp was "good" seems pretty weak.
"Journalism's getting worse because now all greedy companies care about is making money, while back in the day no one cared about making money and people were just much more virtuous." I'm...unconvinced. When was journalism not a "product?"

The standard line now, I think is something like "back in the day there were only a few outlets so those outlets/networks had a quasi-monopoly and could extract rent from consumers. Since the monopolists had such an easy, profitable time they could afford to waste money on extra writers, etc, so we had "good journalism." Now that there are tons of outlets and tons of competition each seller has very thin margins (since the returns to advertising/ad rates are also much lower) and so the overall quality has gone down." Now that's not an unassailable argument either, but at least it addresses some external CHANGE to try and account for the quality change.

FullMoon said...

Every one of those women took pills from Cosby's hand , put them in their mouth, and swallowed them.

They were expecting to have sex. Possibly not expecting to be asleep when it happened.

"ludes, everybody knew what they were for back then. Like getting blackout drunk without the vomit and headaches afterwards.

Let's not forget that Cosby played a doctor on tv. Obviously he had a pre existing interest in anatomy.

Was sex with his wife similar, occasionally?

Humperdink said...

EP asserted: "Bill Clinton's three accusations were credible, so why not Bill Cosby's fifty?"

Three? Only three you say? You may want to review the actuarial tables for women born in Arkansas in the 1950's and 60's.

GrapeApe said...

It doesn't take thirty years to figure out you've been assulted. Unless you decide it is an opportunity to cash in. And don't play the "I was so ashamed" card. Bullshit.

clint said...

"Snark said...

""After several days of deliberations, we were in a three-way deadlock (4-4-4 with a lesser-included-charge as one option) and told the judge so. Another half a week of deliberations and we had a unanimous verdict. So it does happen. "

That's interesting. Did it feel like a compromise verdict, or did people leave feeling like the extra deliberation brought you to a better and more shared view of the facts?"

I think it was the latter.

One of the big issues was overcharging. We were given almost a dozen separate charges -- several of which were supported by nothing but the victim's hazy memory of events peripheral to the main crime. So when we looked at the whole story the prosecutor was making, there were just a ridiculous number of holes in it. That gave an impression that there had to be reasonable doubt about the whole story. But once we had voted Not Guilty verdicts on a bunch of the peripheral charges... it started to become clear that those "holes" didn't actually touch on the main crime. However angry we were at the police for their shoddy work or the prosecutor for giving us so many unproven charges, there really was a solid case for the main crime.

One of the key charges was also fairly technical. It was kidnapping, but there wasn't enough evidence to support the initial abduction (at least not beyond a reasonable doubt). We had to figure out whether things that happened later constituted "forcibly" "confining or imprisoning" the victim and dig into things like "constructive force". The judge's instructions on the law were thirty pages long. Even where we mostly agreed on what facts had been proven and what facts were in doubt, it took us a while to unanimously agree on what that meant with respect to the law.

Anyway, that's probably *way* more than you wanted to know.

I will say I left the experience with a lot more respect for the idea of juries than I'd had before. For a random group of strangers too stupid to get out of jury duty, I think we all took the work very seriously and worked really hard to get it right. And I think we did.

MaxedOutMama said...

Clint - thanks for the account of your experience. It's interesting about the overcharging.

I do think that juries are an irreplaceable element of the justice system. In and of themselves, I believe they tend to correct excesses by the prosecution in a way that all other oversight does not.

Michael K said...

"Thousands of famous, rich men are serial philanderers but somehow manage to avoid fifty rape accusations."

They did not give speeches about the black family and how that is the problem with inner city violence,

I'll agree that Cosby should have kept his mouth shut but he didn't know how the left gets revenge.

He does now.

n.n said...

Michael K:

To be fair, there was a Black Panther who indulged in exploiting white women, and hated white men, then later in life discovered Christianity and turned his life around 180. Cosby may be such a man. Who discovered his principles later rather than sooner.

This is a poignant moment to discuss the role of nature vs nurture and genetics vs philosophy to influence the development of human character "constellations."

Earnest Prole said...

As with Greg Gianforte's assault, start with the outcome you desire (based on ideology), then reason backward to the facts you will and will not accept.

Mountain Maven said...

I suppose the "process is the punishment" will have to suffice for the serial rapist. Like OJ's stints in LA and NV jails instead of the needle.

rcocean said...

It'd probably be easier to convict if women didn't wait 10 years to decide they'd been raped.

But remember: Women and men are equal.

Mountain Maven said...

"Name 5" Most any pro sports roster.

Known Unknown said...

I just read that the rape drug was 1 and 1/2 Benadryl. Seriously?

rcocean said...

Of course, she contacted him 40 times after she'd been "raped". Sorta like Anita Hill following Thomas to another job after she'd "harassed".

Women need time to think.

rcocean said...

Funny how everyone praised by MSM and entertainment industry usually turns out to be a crumb-bum or a fraud.

OJ - wasn't a black Arnold Palmer
Crosby - wasn't America's Dad
Obama - No hope and change there
Comey - Not the objective upright Law Enforcement Guy

madAsHell said...

Isn't Cosby being persecuted for saying something practical?

Known Unknown said...

"Of course, she contacted him 40 times after she'd been "raped". Sorta like Anita Hill following Thomas to another job after she'd "harassed". "

The Patriarchy works in mysterious ways.

rcocean said...

Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned - old sexist white guy.

R.J. Chatt said...

I usually agree with Michael K. but not on this. In the first place, Constand reported the rape back in 2005. She was never looking for an entry into the entertainment business. She was a former basketball player and director of operations for Temple University’s women’s basketball team, that's how she met Cosby. He approached her at her office to discuss "business related matters," according to Cosby's 2005 deposition. She had not pursued him.

Nothing came of her reporting then, so I don't know why there is reason to expect something will now. Aggravated sexual assault might be exactly the right term to describe what happened but Cosby was a legend then and still is. On some level I am sure that some people have a problem believing that they could be SO wrong about him, and that convicting of him of something that bad would make us all feel bad about ourselves as well.

From what I've read the fantasy of a romantic relationship was all in Cosby's mind, Constand was a lesbian and already in a romantic relationship with a woman. At that time Constand was 31 years old, a young woman looking for business advice and mentorship. There was nothing untoward about her looking for a mentor.

Cosby had affected the persona of a "national dad" so it was not unreasonable for her to have trusted him and his invitations to his home in Elkins Park, PA., a very nice upscale neighborhood, largely Jewish as a matter of fact. Not Hollywood by any stretch of the imagination.

Quaestor said...

khesanh0802 wrote: Apparently journalism schools do not teach how to search for facts anymore.

Agreed. Today the curriculum amounts your narrative and how to advance it.

However, legal reportage presents a special problem. I surmise that broadcast journalism is often the unstated career goal of many who enroll in our law schools today. Since TV favors the youthful face over the furrowed brow of experience many eschew a career in the law that could lead to significant trial experience and instead head for the BIG AUDITION as soon as possible. Thus we get incompetent reportage from incompetent lawyers.

damikesc said...

Cosby probably did what he was accused of.

The women, however, were also very likely willing accomplices as long as the potential for fame was dangling.

It became a crime when he couldn't deliver a career.

William said...

Sometimes you read about some ninety year old concentration camp guard being tried for war crimes. I can't help but think why bother. I suppose it makes a point, but it would make a better point if some of, say, Pol Pot's henchmen were given priority in being tried for war crimes.......I haven't been following the trial. I suppose he's guilty, and I suppose he'll never serve a day in jail, but there are other, younger criminals whom the state might more usefully pursue.

virgil xenophon said...

MaxedoutMama@2:09pm



Agree, and hasn't the "Allen charge" already been ruled unconstitutional in several cases/jurisdictions across the US for the very reasons you outline?

Krumhorn said...

The fact that there are a great many accusers at this point may suggest a greater likelihood that something happened. However, it does not mean that he can be convicted of crimes so many years after the events. I think he had a lot of willing sex partners who became unwilling when he didn't call them the next day or career success didn't materialize.

That's what comes from f*king sluts.

- Krumhorn

rightguy2 said...

She called him 53 times (!) after this alleged rape. Sounds pretty consensual. Probably serial too.

mockturtle said...

Chatt asserts: I usually agree with Michael K. but not on this. In the first place, Constand reported the rape back in 2005. She was never looking for an entry into the entertainment business. She was a former basketball player and director of operations for Temple University’s women’s basketball team, that's how she met Cosby. He approached her at her office to discuss "business related matters," according to Cosby's 2005 deposition. She had not pursued him.

Constand received a settlement from Cosby resulting from a civil suit in 2005.

Krumhorn said...

When you are famous and have lots of money, the best practice is to find a network of first-class hookers and just pay for the sex. It's cheaper in the long run, and Elliot Spitzer notwithstanding, a lot safer from a reputational risk standpoint. There is a surprisingly high number of attractive, smart, personable, and educated women who completely embrace the sex-for-money deal and will offer a very fine girlfriend experience with no complications.

Of course, I wouldn't dream of speaking from personal experience in this matter, but I know a guy.

- Krumhorn

William said...

There are a surprising number of otherwise sagacious commenters who have come to Cosby's defense. I just think the weight of numbers is against him. Perhaps Cosby had a thing for manipulative gold diggers as opposed to comatose women, but that's also not a sign of high moral character........So far as the delay in coming forward goes, that's easily explained. If you were abused by a priest in the fifties or sixties, you just shut up about it. If you came forward, you would just add to your trauma. After Cosby slipped from the PC fold, the women could come forward with some chance of credibility and of not having their good names trashed.

Birkel said...

Did I read correctly up thread that Robert Cook thinks the media owning billionaires cannot afford investigative fact finding?

All those Leftist billionaires?

The front capitalist billionaires?

Grab your carry on.

Birkel said...

Crony capitalist

mockturtle said...

William, I see the priest/molestation cases to be different because children were involved. For grown women to wait that long to report a crime is ridiculous. And I do ridicule it.

Bob Loblaw said...

When you are famous and have lots of money, the best practice is to find a network of first-class hookers and just pay for the sex. It's cheaper in the long run, and Elliot Spitzer notwithstanding, a lot safer from a reputational risk standpoint.

Yeah, I think this is probably true. You can't do it as a politician or a pastor, but it's a lot harder for a hooker to extort you on a false rape claim.

rcocean said...

"When you are famous and have lots of money, the best practice is to find a network of first-class hookers and just pay for the sex."

Charlie Sheen "“I don't pay them for sex. I pay them to leave."

I'm sure Bill Maher is doing the same thing. Although given his looks and dwarfism he probably pays extra.

Yancey Ward said...

William

There may be lots of women accusing him, but that is not part of this trial as far as I can tell from the stories written about it. Inexplicably to me, the case chosen seems to the weakest of them all. If I were a prosecutor and I wanted Cosby to skate, I would have chosen this case.

rcocean said...

If you were abused by a priest in the fifties or sixties, you just shut up about it. If you came forward, you would just add to your trauma.

These women aren't young kids and Crosby isn't a Priest.

I'm sure these women were hoping they'd be the new Mrs. Bill Crosby once he had sex with them, and when it didn't turn out that way, they got angry. But not angry enough to actually file charges.

If it takes 10 years to figure out whether you've been raped and what to press charges, then maybe it wasn't that big of a deal to you.

rcocean said...

Sorry, Bill Cosby not "bill Crosby". I'm thinking of "Bing Crosby" because I have his music on while working.

Of course Bing was another phony entertainment figure. Sold as Mr. laid-back, charming guy, he was in fact a fairly serious, cold figure off-screen. Of course, he didn't rape anyone - just grabbed them by the pussy when they asked for it. And when a Priest said it was OK.

Bob Loblaw said...

There may be lots of women accusing him, but that is not part of this trial as far as I can tell from the stories written about it. Inexplicably to me, the case chosen seems to the weakest of them all. If I were a prosecutor and I wanted Cosby to skate, I would have chosen this case.

I think this was the only one without statute of limitations problems, and only that by a whisker.

James K said...

Of course Bing was another phony entertainment figure. Sold as Mr. laid-back, charming guy, he was in fact a fairly serious, cold figure off-screen.

You mean he was an . . . actor??? Why is that phony? More power to him if he could come off as different on screen from how he was in real life.

People said the same thing about Johnny Carson. Who cares about what he's like in his private life, assuming he's not a criminal.

The Godfather said...

Like all decent people, I hope that Cosby didn't commit rape. Like all decent people, if he did commit rape, I hope he's appropriately punished.

I think the entire media complex is unanimous that he's a serial rapist, but in the one case that's actually been tried in court before a jury, the jury hasn't been able, yet, to agree on a verdict, even though the defense didn't put on a case. Can it be that the real world is more complicated that our media-saturated minds are able to deal with?

Michael K said...

"Of course Bing was another phony entertainment figure"

Some friends of mine knew him pretty well. He was a stern father figure for his boys and had an alcoholic wife. Yes, I'm sure he played around as those male stars had girls throwing them selves at them all the time.

I don't know about his second family but they seem to have stayed out of the newspapers.

Michael K said...

" that's easily explained. If you were abused by a priest in the fifties or sixties, you just shut up about it."

I am certain that most of those priest molestation cases were gay priests and teenagers who were experimenting. Then the big payday arrived. Another feeding frenzy.

There were a few who really were pedophiles but they were the minority.

Michael K said...

"Constand reported the rape back in 2005. She was never looking for an entry into the entertainment business."

Fair enough. I have not made a study of the case.

Bay Area Guy said...

Hollywood isn't known as a bastion of societal equity and gentle manners. Ever heard of this quaint old phrase from the 40's -- the "Casting Couch?"

Powerful men in Hollywood pretty much get to do what they want with subordinates, who most often are willing participants. Adam West of Batman fame, said he once slept with 8 women in 1 night -- a combination of extras in the show and groupies. Adam West? He was a nobody piker compared to Cosby.

Not saying I agree with this -- it stinks. Glad I'm not part of it. It is a cesspool.

So, I do have sympathy for Constand. She did not deserve to be taken advantage of by Cosby. I hope she got a decent settlement in her 2005 civil suit against him. But this criminal case is real hard to prove beyond a reasonable doubt. Too much time has elapsed.

Earnest Prole said...

I have not made a study of the case.

You can bone up (pardon the expression) on all fifty cases with a few curious keystrokes using that brand-new google software.

William said...

Perhaps the priest/child analogy is the wrong one to make. Try this. If you're a woman who had a bad experience with MLK, JFK, or Bill Clinton, my advice would be to shut up about it, both in real time and in the future. You're just not gong to win. Paula Jones is a fluke, and I don't think her reputation and, perhaps, her life were improved by the suit.....,,..The media has control of the megaphones. You can't shout them down. If you take on one of their sacred cows, they will treat you like a hyena in the kraal. Good people will rally to mock and diminish you.......Milo was abused by a priest. I would think that gives him standing to form his own opinion on clergy abuse. Not so. He had an idiosyncratic response to that abuse and the media felt entitled to destroy him for that response........I think it's possible that some of Cosby's women were willing to submit to casting couch intrigue to further their career, but that's not the same as consenting to be rendered comatose. Post facto, perhaps the women felt that there was no option but to treat the crime as part of the game and, contemporaneously, make what use of it they could.........I thought Bill O'Reilly and Roger Ailes were the only two people in the news and entertainment industries who were capable of mistreating women. This problem may be more widespread than is indicated in the media.

Earnest Prole said...

In other rapey news, Trendy Moms Are Asking Their Babies Permission to Pick Them Up (So They Don’t Turn Into Rapists)

rcocean said...

Who cares about what he's like in his private life, assuming he's not a criminal

If you don't care why are you responding?

rcocean said...

I don't know about his second family but they seem to have stayed out of the newspapers.

Yeah, Nathan won the US Amateur Golf tournament, and the daughter was a successful TV actress.

Who knows, maybe Mothers have some impact on how the kids turn out?

rcocean said...

Perhaps the priest/child analogy is the wrong one to make. Try this. If you're a woman who had a bad experience with MLK, JFK, or Bill Clinton, my advice would be to shut up about it, both in real time and in the future. You're just not gong to win.

Look, if you've been raped I'm 110% in favor of your coming forward and saying so. But don't say you were (a) big buddies with your rapist and (b) called him 40 times - AFTER the rape. Or wait 10 years to go to the police. Yes, women are going to have to show some courage, y'know like men do.

gadfly said...

Blogger Achilles said...
Wilbur said...

I've scratched my head wondering if they were reporting on the same trial I was in.

Gell-Mann effect.


I had to look it up but there was Michael Crichton with some heavy thoughts on the matter:

“Briefly stated, the Gell-Mann Amnesia effect is as follows. You open the newspaper to an article on some subject you know well. In Murray's case, physics. In mine, show business.

You read the article and see the journalist has absolutely no understanding of either the facts or the issues. Often, the article is so wrong it actually presents the story backward— reversing cause and effect. I call these the "wet streets cause rain" stories. Paper's full of them.

In any case, you read with exasperation or amusement the multiple errors in a story, and then turn the page to national or international affairs, and read as if the rest of the newspaper was somehow more accurate about Palestine than the baloney you just read. You turn the page, and forget what you know.”
~ Michael Crichton

Michael K said...

You can bone up (pardon the expression) on all fifty cases with a few curious keystrokes using that brand-new google software.

Believe it or not, I have a life, unlike some other people around here.

I am generalizing and the one case quoted by another commenter, mockturtle, I was not familiar with.

Most of them are gold diggers. Maybe there is one telling the truth.

mockturtle said...

Gad-fly, the Crichton quote is excellent. Any event or subject about which I had personal knowledge was reported wrongly. But I tend to extrapolate my skepticism to other fields and events, as well, assuming they never get it right about anything.

mockturtle said...

I'm a little surprised Althouse didn't go off on a tangent about the word deadlocked. ;-)

Fernandinande said...

The judge gives them an "Allen charge" and sends them back for more deliberation.

What if the jury says they're done? Are they slaves, subject to the judge's "orders"? Of course they are, but for how long?

Allen charges have been rejected, in whole or in part, by ...: Pennsylvania
("rejected" is philosopher-king talk for "changed the name")

+

Judge O’Neill’s action represented what is called under Pennsylvania law a “Spencer charge,” explaining what is acceptable in reaching consensus, and instructing them to keep trying, with open minds but without giving up firmly held convictions.

That's mighty white of Judge O’Neill, what with the "open minds" and "firmly held convictions" and you'll stay here until you all agree.

Paddy O said...

The judge told the jury to strenuously deliberate.

Spiros Pappas said...

Mr. Cosby confessed to raping this woman. This is an open and shut case. I think there must be a racist juror and that's sad. But we'll find out what is motivating the hold-out (and so will his family and his coworkers and his community).

Snark said...

"Anyway, that's probably *way* more than you wanted to know.

I will say I left the experience with a lot more respect for the idea of juries than I'd had before. For a random group of strangers too stupid to get out of jury duty, I think we all took the work very seriously and worked really hard to get it right. And I think we did."

Not at all! Very interesting, and I'm sure appreciated by lots of us. Thank you.

I've always had the sense that juries almost always take their duty very seriously and genuinely care about doing it well. It's neat to hear an inside account of that.

mockturtle said...

It would be more interesting if the Cosby jury were dreadlocked.

n.n said...

Given the precedents, the jury is probably debating whether it was rape or rape-rape, or decade-after pills.

MaxedOutMama said...

Virgil Xenophon (Love the screen name) Well, it's a mixed bag. The SC is okay with it with limitations and scrutiny. I don't think there's any jurisdiction in which an Allen charge might not, in some cases, be later tossed out. It's case and fact specific. It is not just the wording - it's also the circumstances.

It would be hard to argue for coercion if the instruction were given to a frustrated jury that came back in two hours announcing that they could not agree, but as time goes on, the more a judge sends a jury back the more potentially coercive it gets. I think at least one Allen charge has been thrown out when the judge first asked and ascertained that the majority was for conviction. In that case, it was argued, the Allen charge language about the minority deferring to the majority re conviction and acquittal was only facially neutral - the judge was really telling them to go back and convict.

I don't know the situation in all the states, but the courts are generally unwilling to totally rule out a judge's instruction to a jury to keep honestly deliberating in some circumstances. The "minority" part is not allowed in a lot of states, and I don't believe it should be, to be honest. In PA the minority language has been illegal since 1971 (I looked it up). The "Spencer" instruction does not contain the minority language.

But there is a point after which you just cannot detain a jury until they make a decision - you are de facto coercing a verdict and overriding the jurors' independence, whatever the verbiage with which you detain them may be. Mistrials do happen. If a judge uses his judicial authority to force the minority to cave to the majority, the law requiring a unanimous verdict by a certain number of independent jurors has been overridden, and if you detain them too long, that's what you are doing.

I do think that judges, whatever they might say, are influenced to some extent by their opinion of the underlying case when it comes to these appeals. Just look at the 1971 case in PA. The judges decided that the appealed conviction would stand, but that all future Allen instructions were debarred. That does not make much sense on its face - but the majority did not want to let a defendant walk who they believed was correctly convicted.

Benadryl as a date rape drug? Not very convincing, and I write that as a person who has a very strong reaction to Benadryl. In this case, the purported victim (who probably was subjected to what I would consider was sexually unethical behavior) appeared not to realize that an assault had occurred for an extended period of time during which she maintained contact with the defendant. This is not a strong case. It's not. Also the record shows that the jury has been very seriously deliberating.

Finally, just by reading the comments here I think it is evident that all the publicity about the other allegations has influenced minds about this charge. But that is not how the justice system works. This case was brought because it could be brought, not really because it is a case that is proved beyond a reasonable doubt. It isn't. The defendant already got her justice in the civil case, which has a different, lower standard of proof.

MaxedOutMama said...

PS: To everyone - there is one point I want to make about detaining deadlocked juries until they reach a verdict. While there may not be a single bright line as to when coercion begins to occur, judicial coercion may cause a not guilty verdict instead of a mistrial. That verdict leaves the prosecution unable to try the case again, but in some cases, letting a genuine mistrial stand would allow a genuinely guilty defendant to be tried and convicted later. It cuts both ways. There really is a good reason to stick with the law.



AJ Lynch said...

Interesting that Althouse, who rarely makes predictions or takes sides, makes a prediction in this case.

mockturtle said...

Interesting that Althouse, who rarely makes predictions or takes sides, makes a prediction in this case.

No cruel neutrality here.

mockturtle said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
mockturtle said...

The only jury I was ever on lasted a week, was hung and a mistrial declared.

Ann Althouse said...

"No cruel neutrality here."

There's nothing to be neutral about here. I didn't say I wanted him acquitted. I just said that based on the material in the opening statements, it was quite predictable that he would be acquitted.

Ann Althouse said...

And, yes, a hung jury is not a fulfillment of my prediction.

Ann Althouse said...

It's awful to think of everyone going through the ordeal only to have to start over again, but I can't believe he would be retried if this effort fails.

mockturtle said...

I wonder how the jury is split.

prairie wind said...

I have noted that over the last several decades reportage of trials has declined steeply.
Is that because the media often employ law school grads as reporters, or is it just another symptom of the general decadence of American journalism?


There are very few trials on which to report. The prosecutors get convictions with a plea agreement in something like 97% of criminal cases. No trial, no need for the prosecution to actually prove their case to a jury.

Prosecutors overcharge the defendant and then use harsh mandatory minimum sentences to "encourage" the defendant to take a plea agreement.

Trumpit said...

The prosecutor could retry him on the drugging charge and drop the rape part. They are more likely to get a conviction that way. Cosby should be punished.

He liked sex with lots of women, but was too all-around ugly to have much luck, so he slipped them a mickey. He should compensate his victims without admitting guilt, but it's not going to happen.