Daily Trends Now
Daily Trends Now

Bill Cosby trial: Judge orders release of jurors' names

The Pennsylvania judge who presided over Bill Cosby's sex assault has agreed to release the names of the jurors who weighed the funnyman's fate before Saturday's mistrial.

Meanwhile, County Executive Rich Fitzgerald confirmed to Pittsburgh's Action News 4 that all costs to Allegheny County from the Cosby jury being selected here will be fully reimbursed by Montgomery County.

The jury member told ABC News on Monday that jurors initially voted overwhelmingly in a non-binding poll to find Cosby not guilty on all counts.

NORRISTOWN, Pa. (AP) - The Pennsylvania judge who presided over Bill Cosby's sexual assault trial is weighing whether to make public the identities of the jurors who deadlocked in the case.

The voting breakdown remains unknown, and jurors are not allowed to share those numbers, the judge ruled.

The document states that a disclosure of anything said or done during deliberations "would have a chilling effect upon future jurors in this case and their ability to deliberate freely".

When the judge did not make the names of the jurors public at the end of the trial, several news organizations, including The Philadelphia Inquirer, The Associated Press, The Washington Post and The New York Times, filed a motion requesting access to the names, citing their First Amendment right. He may try to call additional witnesses to establish Cosby's experiences with women who claimed they were drugged and assaulted. Complicating matters is the fact that Cosby's trial ended Saturday in a mistrial and prosecutors said they will retry him as soon as this year. Jurors reported they were hopelessly deadlocked on all three criminal counts stemming from Cosby's alleged drugging and assaulting former Temple University athletic department employee Andrea Constand at his Cheltenham home in January 2004.

"This is a critical part of the justice system", Segal argued. "The qualified right to juror names was meant to promote fairness and impartiality in the justice system, not undermine it".

He said he would rule by Wednesday, June 21. If we kept going, there was definitely going to be a fight. Media groups argued for their release.

Andrea Constand in a tweet Tuesday said she is "eternally grateful for the messages" she has received in recent days. If not for court-sanctioned secrecy, his accusers might have known about each other and been more willing to come forward.

Without more details from jurors, it may be impossible to determine why the jury was unable to come to a consensus despite 52 hours of deliberations, longer than the trial itself.

In court papers Steele argued the media seeks to ask the discharged jurors questions about information that the judge has already deemed confidential, such as discussions that occurred in the jury deliberation room.

The Associated Press has tried to contact jurors for comment but hasn't spoken speak to any of them. They deliberated more than 50 hours and still could not reach a verdict.

The AP does not typically identify people who say they are victims of sexual assault unless they grant permission, which Constand has done.


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