Bill Cosby’s sexual assault trial isn’t set to start until June but on Friday, Cosby’s lawyers filed a request to change either the location or the jury pool, claiming that the publicity surrounding the case has “tainted” the minds of any jury in the county where the trial is set to take place.
The New York Times reports that the motion pointed specifically to media coverage of the allegations, saying that the intensity of said coverage has essentially eliminated the possibility of a fair trial in Montgomery County. In case you’ve willfully forgotten about the allegations in an attempt to put bad things out of your mind temporarily until tomorrow, here is a reminder: Former Temple University employee Andrea Constand alleges that Cosby drugged and sexually assaulted her in 2004.
It seems the publicity in Montgomery County surrounding the Cosby trial has been made worse by District Attorney Kevin Steele, who in 2015 accused his rival Bruce L. Castor of “failing to prosecute” Cosby via a series of ads while running for election. Despite whatever “scrutiny” the ads intensified, it’s safe to say that unless you’ve spent the last year or so in an underground bunker, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt-style, you’re well aware of the numerous sexual assault allegations that surround Cosby. Finding a jury pool that wasn’t tainted by prejudicial evidence seems like a big ask.
The judge in the case has yet to make a decision about a change of venue for the trial.