A lawyer for Bill Cosby argued yesterday that it would be "terribly embarrassing" for the comedian if documents from a 2005 sex-assault lawsuit by former Temple University employee Andrea Constand were unsealed; the AP is seeking the release. The settlement was confidential. Cosby's lawyer argued that his client's deposition could reveal details of Cosby's marriage, sex life, and prescription drug use. "Frankly, ... it would embarrass him, (and) it would also prejudice him in eyes of the jury pool in Massachusetts," lawyer George Gowen III argued. He said the public should not have access to what Cosby was forced to say under oath nearly a decade ago. More than a dozen women have since accused Cosby of sex assault, and three have a defamation lawsuit pending against him in Massachusetts.
Cosby is trying to get their case thrown out; he's never been charged. "Why would he be embarrassed by his own version of the facts?" asked US District Judge Eduardo Robreno yesterday, given that the accusations in Constand's lawsuit are already public. AP lawyer Gayle Sproul called Cosby "an icon," particularly in Philadelphia, who "held himself out as someone who would guide the public in ways of morality." Under local court rules, Cosby has the burden to show why seals should not be lifted after two years, the AP argued. The judge could side with Cosby, with the AP, or strike a middle ground and release some documents, perhaps with negotiated redactions.