On 7/7/15, I was asked on Fox’s America Newsroom to give a legal opinion on the recent developments where Bill Cosby admitted in a sealed civil deposition in 2005 that he willingly provided drugs to women in order to have sex with them. Recently, a court unsealed those documents upon a request from attorneys representing numerous women who allege they were victims of rape by Mr. Cosby.
This is a bombshell development. These admissions will assist the women’s’ attorneys who are suing Cosby in their case. If the judged admits the evidence of this admission it is a major blow to Cosby’s case. Legally, the admission of this evidence will be a very close call. Courts by law do not like to bring in character evidence of bad acts of a defendant, but there are very narrow exceptions to that rule that are complex and involved.
In all, these new revelations provide serious support to the women who have stated they were drugged and raped. Cosby indicated in this deposition that he procured Quaaludes for the purpose to have sex with young women. While this does not mean that he unwillingly “drugged” as alleged in this case, it certainly illustrates facts that Cosby unwittingly admitted that he introduces drugs into a scenario where many women allege that they were later raped. Either way, willing or unwilling, there is a creepy, icky factor to his admission that will not serve him well in the public mind, or the courtroom if admitted at trial.
This is damaging evidence in the court of public opinion for sure. We will wait to see if it is also admitted in the court of law. If it is, Mr. Cosby is going to have some serious legal problems.