The Associated Press reports that a judge has ruled that only one of Cosby’s accusers — other than Andrea Constand, the woman accusing Cosby in the case in which he is being tried — can testify at the actor’s upcoming trial.
Prosecutors had asked the judge to allow testimony from 13 other women who have accused Cosby of drugging and raping or molesting them out of the more than 50 women total who have made such claims. Cosby’s lawyers objected to having the women testify, saying the string of old “casting couch” claims aren’t part of Cosby’s “signature” behavior. The judge ruled that the prosecution could not include these “prior bad act” witnesses in its case.
Despite the dozens of women who have accused Cosby of sexual assault, this is the first time he’s been charged with a crime related to the many accusations he’s faced. Prosecutors in Philadelphia reopened a case last year after old court documents were released showing that Cosby admitted in a deposition that he had drugged women to have sex with them multiple times over a 50-year period. Prosecutors charged Cosby in a 2005 case in which Constand, a former Temple University employee, claims Cosby drugged and molested her at his home near Philadelphia.
Cosby repeatedly maintained his innocence for years as hushed rumors of serial sexual assault followed him, but he slowly dropped out of the public eye in 2015 as dozens of women began to come forward and claim media attention.
Cosby faces three counts of felony aggravated indecent assault. His trial is set to begin in June.