The judge presiding over Bill Cosby’s criminal sexual assault case expects the trial to last no more than two weeks, ABC News reports.
Proceedings open on June 5. Montgomery County Judge Steven O’Neill also hopes to have a jury in place before then. The jurors in the 79-year-old’s case will come from the Pittsburgh area and will be sequestered roughly 300 miles away in Norristown.
Cosby is accused of drugging and molesting Andrea Constand, a Temple University employee, at his home in 2004. He is facing 10 years behind bars if convicted on felony sex assault charges.
The comedian, who has been accused of drugging and sexually assaulting more than 50 women over a span of four decades, has repeatedly denied the allegations. The judge was also expected to decide if jurors in the case can hear Cosby’s 2005 testimony about quaaludes, his sexual history and payments he made to women who have accused him of assault.
The defense was pushing for a pre-screening of the Allegheny County jury pool through a written questionnaire on their media habits, feelings about Cosby and their background.
“You cannot walk into a grocery store, a convenience store, a minimart, without seeing (tabloid reports) … calling him a racist,” Defense Attorney Angela Argrusa said in court Monday.
But O’Neill rejected the questionnaire proposal saying they would quickly end up on social media after being mailed to peoples’ homes. He also expressed concerns that answers could be influenced by family members and friends.
The judge said the standard 16-question state form would be mailed to potential jurors. The jurors would also undergo individual questioning in court.
The deposition given by Cosby came during the course of Constand’s civil suit, one that he later settled. In the deposition, made public in 2015, the comedian acknowledged that he obtained quaaludes in the 1970s to give to women before sex.
Cosby’s lawyers argue the deposition is irrelevant since the sedatives were banned 20 years before he met Constand.
The Cosby Show actor remains free on $1 million bail. He also said the encounter with Constand was consensual.