Bill Cosby Accuser Andrea Constand Takes the Stand, Testifies Comedian Sexually Assaulted Her
By Antoinette Bueno
Bill Cosby came face-to-face with Andrea Constand, the woman alleging that he sexually assaulted her in 2004, during day two of his sexual assault trial in Norristown, Pennsylvania.
Cosby, 79, is charged with three counts of aggravated indecent assault for allegedly drugging and sexually assaulting the former Temple University employee in January 2004 at his mansion in Elkins Park, Pennsylvania. He has pleaded not guilty to all charges, and has repeatedly denied similar claims from other women.
The prosecution called Constand to the stand on Tuesday, and before being going into how she came to meet Cosby, she was asked her to point Cosby out in the courtroom. She complied, although Cosby did not look at her, nor did he look at her throughout the testimony, even turning his head away at times.
According to her testimony, Constand said she first met Cosby at a basketball game in the fall of 2002, when she was the director of basketball operations at Temple University. She said they were introduced through a well-respected donor of Temple University sports.
"I think, in general, he may have reached out to get to know me, what I did there as director of operations," Constand said. "As time passed, I think Mr. Cosby just generally wanted to get to know me. I think the questions turned personal, like, 'Where are you from?' and 'Did you play basketball yourself?'"
"Eventually, he asked me to come up to his house to talk about basketball," she continued, noting that she also gave him her personal phone number. "I really didn't see a problem in it at all [giving him my personal cell phone number]. It seemed natural."
Constand said she went to a few dinners with Cosby, two times in groups with other individuals. She said that, at the time, she felt Cosby was taking the time to introduce her to people because she was "a Canadian person in a new city."
However, Constand claimed Cosby made a "suggestive" advance towards her during their fourth dinner together, after no previous incidents.
"When I had finished my meal, Mr. Cosby again came and sat down beside me and at some point, he sat very close to me and commented on my pants, and touched the side of my waist and then took his hand and attempted to unbutton my top button," she alleged. "I felt him reach for my zipper, and I leaned forward and stopped that. I said, 'I'm not here for that, I don't want that.'"
When asked why she continued to meet with Cosby after the incident, Constand replied, "I wasn't scared of somebody making a pass at me. I trusted him. I wasn’t scared of him in any way."
Constand said she continued to be friendly with Cosby, until the alleged sexual assault in 2004. She claimed that she came to Cosby's house to discuss a career change into massage therapy, and it was during this encounter that Cosby offered her three blue pills.
"He said, 'These will help you relax,'" Constand alleged, crying. "I said, 'What are they? Are they natural? Are they herbal?' He said, 'Yes. Put them down. They'll take the edge off.' ... I said, 'What do I do?' He said, 'Swallow them down.' I said, 'I trust you,' and I swallowed them down."
Constand said the two continued their conversation, and alleged that although she told Cosby she didn't want to drink wine, he persuaded her. She alleged that after several minutes of talking, she began to slur her words and told Cosby she had trouble seeing him.
"I said, 'I see two of you and I'm slurring my words,'" she claimed in court. "Mr. Cosby stood up and I stood up, ‘cause he said, 'You probably need to relax.' And when I stood up, my legs were not strong and I began to panic a little bit. Mr. Cosby helped me by my arm and assisted me over to a couch and said, 'Just relax.'"
"I was very concerned," she continued. "I thought I was having a bad reaction and I was panicking a little bit, but I knew I couldn't really get up and go anywhere at the same time because my legs were rubbery. I was in no state of mind."
Constand claimed Cosby assisted her to the couch and laid her down, and that she doesn't recall passing out. She claimed she was then jolted awake and felt Cosby's hand groping her breast under her shirt, then groping her genitals.
"I felt him take his hand, put it on his penis and move it back and forth," she alleged.
"I wasn't able to -- in my head -- I was trying to get my hands to move or my legs to move, but I was frozen and those messages didn't get there and I was limp," she claimed, fighting back tears. "I wasn't able to fight in any way. I wanted him to stop."
Constand said the last thing she recalls from the alleged incident is waking up around four or five in the morning, and walking towards the kitchen, and Cosby was there. She said Cosby offered her a muffin and tea, and then she drove herself home.
"I felt really humiliated and I was really confused," Constand replied, sobbing when asked why she didn't say anything. "I just wanted to go home."
Constand said she returned to his home after the alleged incident to ask him what type of pills he had given her, but claimed he was "evasive," so she left. She said she continued to speak to Cosby after the alleged incident because of her job at the time, and because Cosby was an important donor to the school.
"I was leaving in a month, and I did not want to stir up any trouble, and for it to look negative to not talk with a trustee," Constand said. "I didn't talk about my personal feelings about things. I was on my way home."
Constand left Philadelphia on March 31, 2004.
Meanwhile, the defense -- which concluded its cross-examination on Wednesday -- pointed out discrepancies between what Constand told police during her phone call and her interviews with them, and her current testimony. For example, Constand originally told police the alleged sexual assault occurred on March 16, 2004, but the defense noted that she made several phone calls around 10 p.m. that night, according to her phone records. Constand later said the incident occurred between mid-January to mid-February.
"I was mistaken," she said.
Constand also denied that she had a romantic, physical relationship with Cosby, and was asked to confirm the over 50 times she called Cosby after the alleged assault.
"You knew Mr. Cosby was married, right?" the defense asked her at one point, to which Constand replied, "Yes."
Constand testified that they they were only speaking about Temple basketball, and prosecutors later noted that she never called Cosby after she left her job at Temple University.