UPDATE, 11:48 AM: Having suffered losses in trying to stop the Pennsylvania criminal case against him, Bill Cosby today took a hit in his efforts to postpone having to sit for a deposition. An L.A. Superior Court judge Friday rejected the attempts by the actor’s lawyers to yet again delay his second such session in the civil case brought by Judy Huth, who alleges Cosby assaulted her when she was 15 back in 1974. Based on the hearing that concluded this morning in Santa Monica, Cosby will now have to sit for a sworn deposition on April 7.
That actually was the date agreed by Cosby’s attorneys and Gloria Allred and John S. West earlier this week before the actor’s reps went on a filing spree yesterday to stop the sitdown. In her civil case, Judy Huth claims Cosby attacked her at the Playboy Mansion 42 years ago when she was 15-years-old. Though the statute of limitations has passed on Huth’s claims, she was still able to file her case because she was a minor at the time of the alleged assault. Fighting it all the way, Cosby sat for a more than 7-hour first deposition in the Huth case on October 9 last year.
However, there is still a chance the second depo may not happen – at least not now. With the criminal case that could see Cosby serving up to 10-years behind bars moving forward, the actor’s lawyers have scored a March 30 hearing date here in Cali to indefinitely stay Huth’s case. Obviously, if that stay is granted, the April 7 deposition will not occur.
Originally scheduled for February 24 after being ordered on February 2, Cosby’s second deposition in the Huth matter was successfully pushed back by The Cosby Show creator’s attorneys on February 11. The argument that Christopher Tayback made was that Cosby needed to prepare for the scheduled March 8 preliminary hearing in Norristown PA. Judge Craig Karlan agreed and allowed the depo to be moved.
Unsurprisingly and despite earlier failures, Cosby is still fighting on several fronts to have that March 8 hearing halted by seeking an appeal on the case.
PREVIOUS, Feb 25 PM: Just days after dropping a a countersuit against model Beverly Johnson over allegations he drugged and tried to sexually assault her back in the 1980s, Bill Cosby is sending his lawyers back into court tomorrow hoping to see another case from another accuser put on ice for a while. Strongly in procedural offense mode, the actor’s legal strategy now seems to be to put all other cases from some of the more than 50 women who have claimed Cosby drugged and assaulted them on some form of hold as he faces a possible 10 years behind bars amid criminal charges laid late last year in Pennsylvania.
On Friday, Cosby’s attorneys plan to ask a L.A. Superior Court judge to grant them a second postponement of the second deposition the actor is supposed to sit for in the case of Judy Huth. Represented by Gloria Allred and John S. West, Huth claims Cosby molested her at the Playboy Mansion in 1974 when she was a minor. After sitting for a still-sealed seven-hour deposition in the case on October 9 last year in Boston, Cosby was ordered on February 2 — the opening day of a failed first attempt to stop the PA case moving foward — to face a second deposition
Originally scheduled for yesterday, Cosby lawyer Christopher Tayback tried a couple of weeks ago to get the depo halted until a motion on a stay was heard. That effort failed, but Judge Craig Karlan agreed on February 11 that with Cosby facing a preliminary hearing on March 8 in the Keystone State for the trio of felony charges of second-degree aggravated indecent assault the deposition could be pushed back a few weeks.
“Yesterday, both sides agreed to the date of April 7, 2016 for Mr. Cosby’s second deposition,” said Allred today. Within hours that plan was scrapped as Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan’s Tayback told Allred’s office that their side would be seeking another postponement as well as a date for a hearing to stay the whole Huth matter should events in the already challenged and tumultuous criminal case back East move forward. Allred says she will “oppose their motion.” Cosby also filed more paperwork back East to try to stop the March 8 hearing until an appeals court rules on his motion to toss that case.
This comes six days after Cosby filed paperwork with the courts here in L.A. dismissing with prejudice his defamation countersuit against Johnson – for the time being (read it here).“The case has been voluntarily dismissed at this time due to the pendency of the criminal proceedings in Montgomery County, Pennsylvania, which impede Mr. Cosby’s ability to fully participate in litigating the civil case against Ms. Johnson,” a statement for Cosby’s lawyers said today. “We fully expect to re-file the complaint against her prior to the expiration of the statute of limitations.”
Having lost his old lawyer Marty Singer last October and brought Tayback on the payroll, Cosby has taken a much more aggressive approach to the multitude of cases against him all over the nation. In Pennsylvania, that attitude hasn’t worked out so well and it got a bit worse yesterday. Having already rejected Cosby’s efforts to fast track an appeal on the case moving forward, on Wednesday Judge Steven O’Neill wrote an opinion to the state’s Superior Court recommending that they reject the actor’s desire for an appeal over his February 3 ruling to allow the criminal charges to stand and the case to move ahead. The Montgomery County based judge said that any attempt at an appeal should be “quashed” and the case should not be delayed because it does “not involve questions of basic human rights and are not issues of great public importance”
Despite a last minute emergency motion trying to prevent it, a deposition was given by Camille Cosby in another case in Massachusetts. With Mrs. Cosby using the state rule that allows one spouse not to testify against another on matters that were discussed in private, the session only lasted 2.5 hours. Another deposition of Cosby’s spouse and business manager has been set for March 14. The depositions arise from the defamation case instigated by Tamara Green, Therese Serignese, Linda Traitz, Louisa Moritz, Barbara Bowman, Joan Tarshis, and Angela Leslie on December 10, 2014. Late last year, Cosby countersued the women for a wide range of damages and injunctions — including publicly “retracting and correcting” their accusations of sexual assault. The actor also accused his accusers of costing him gigs with NBC and Netflix.
Next week sees Cosby’s lawyers back in L.A. court in Janice Dickinson’s nearly year-old defamation case against him arising from claims that the actor drugged and sexually assaulted her in 1982. Singer was dropped from Dickinson’s case on February 9. Trying to get that entire matter tossed out, don’t be surprised if Cosby reps invoke the Pennsylvania case in Judge Debre Weintraub’s courtroom too.