As the jury in Bill Cosby’s trial remains deadlocked, Lili Bernard, one of the dozens of women who has accused him of drugging and raping her, got into an emotional confrontation with his supporters outside the courthouse. In tears, Bernard told one man what Cosby did to her, then approached a line of people carrying signs expressing support for Cosby. “God bless you,” she told them. “May the spirit of Christ and God fall upon you.”
Bernard came forward with her allegations against Cosby in the spring of 2015, saying Cosby drugged and raped her in the early ’90s, when she was preparing for a guest appearance on the Cosby Show. She’s become close friends with Andrea Constand, and during Cosby’s trial for allegedly sexually assaulting Constand, she’s been at the courthouse daily clutching pink gladiolus flowers, a symbol of resistance.
On Thursday afternoon, Bernard confronted a man outside the courthouse who Philadelphia Inquirer reporter Laura McCrystal identifies as a Cosby supporter.
“I experienced it firsthand when he drugged me, he raped me, he threatened me to silence,” Bernard told the man, her voice hoarse with emotion. “I came home to my boyfriend at the time—who has been my husband, my one and only since 1990—I came home drugged and sexually assaulted by Bill Cosby to him.”
Bernard also waded into a crowd of Cosby supporters to tell them “God bless you” and to shake their hands, looking them firmly in the eye. “Ephesians 6,” she added, simply, before walking away.
Deadspin’s Diana Moskovitz, who has been covering the Cosby trial for Jezebel, observed a number of vocal Cosby supporters outside the Norristown courthouse on Thursday; one, who only gave his name as “Garvey V,” held a sign that read “Free Mr. Cosby.” He told Moskovitz he’d confronted Bernard.
“I was telling her, you should have gotten a rape kit,” he said, later adding that the trial “is a disrespect to people who have gotten raped.”
Nearby, a group three women also held up pieces of paper that said “Free Mr. Cosby Now.” One told reporters, “There still is not enough evidence!”
The Cosby jury is still deliberating after Judge Steven T. O’Neill sent them back. It’s unclear how long he might order them to continue before declaring a mistrial.