The Latest: 2 blacks on Cosby case of 12; alternates picked
May. 24, 2017
PITTSBURGH (AP) — The Latest on jury selection in Bill Cosby's sex assault case (all times local)
All 12 jurors and six alternates have been chosen for the Pennsylvania jury that will hear Bill Cosby's sexual assault trial.
Two blacks are among the 12 people on the jury. The panel includes seven men and five women.
Five men and one woman will fill in as alternate jurors if needed.
Leaving the Pittsburgh courthouse Wednesday evening, Cosby thanked local residents and fans.
He goes on trial June 5 in suburban Philadelphia on charges he drugged and molested a woman in 2004.
The Pennsylvania jury that will hear the sex assault case against actor Bill Cosby will include two blacks among the 12 people on the panel.
Lawyers for the two sides have also agreed on three of the six alternates so far. Two of them are black. Cosby has said the case may have racial overtones.
Cosby's lawyers had complained this week that prosecutors were trying to keep blacks off the jury with their seven strikes. The judge found prosecutors had other valid reasons to strike two black women earlier this week.
The jury makeup is 17 percent black, higher than the 13 percent black population in Allegheny County.
The judge, meanwhile, removed a white male juror chosen Monday for undisclosed reasons. The person chosen to replace him is a white woman.
Half of the new jury pool being questioned in Pittsburgh in Bill Cosby's sex assault case says they've formed an opinion on his guilt or innocence.
That answer doesn't necessarily disqualify someone if they later persuade a judge they can put that aside and focus on the evidence.
Eleven jurors have been chosen so far for the case starting June 5 near Philadelphia.
Cosby's lawyers have complained about prosecutors striking two black women since only one black has made it onto the panel.
The judge is not yet convinced. Six of the 15 blacks dismissed from the initial jury pool this week were tossed based on their questionnaires. Others were sent home later because they had relatives who were crime victims, or an ill spouse or no one to watch their dog.
One person in Wednesday's jury pool says they know Cosby or his family.
The hunt is on for a 12th juror for Bill Cosby's sex assault trial from a new pool summoned to a Pittsburgh courtroom.
The pool of about 93 people appears to include eight black women and three black men.
Cosby's lawyers have accused prosecutors of trying to keep blacks off the jury after they struck two black women from the panel. However, the judge found their reasons weren't racially motivated.
The 11 jurors chosen so far include one black. That ratio nearly matches a 2015 census report that found 13 percent of Allegheny County residents identify as black.
Six alternate jurors are also needed.
The 48-question juror survey asks if the potential jurors have an opinion about Cosby's guilt but not if they were fans of his work.
Bill Cosby has arrived for the third day of jury selection in his Pennsylvania sex assault case.
Cosby arrived at the Allegheny County Courthouse in Pittsburgh just before 8 a.m. Wednesday.
The 79-year-old Cosby is accused of drugging and molesting a Temple University employee in 2004. Cosby has called the encounter consensual.
Cosby goes on trial June 5 in suburban Philadelphia. The jury from Pittsburgh will be sequestered nearly 300 miles from home.
Lawyers are bringing 100 new prospective jurors to the courthouse Wednesday. They hope to get the last regular juror and six alternates from this group.
The defense is crying foul after only one black person was seated among the first 11 jurors chosen.
Prosecutors say race was not a factor in their decision to strike two black women from the panel this week.
With just one black person seated among the first 11 jurors chosen for Bill Cosby's sexual assault trial, the defense is crying foul.
Prosecutors say race was not a factor in their decision to strike two black women from the panel this week. They say one was a former Pittsburgh police detective who sued the city after she was arrested in a public scandal.
Judge Steven O'Neill rejected the race bias argument, but said he would revisit the issue if the defense offered statistical evidence of any discrimination.
The lawyers return to court on Wednesday in Pittsburgh to pick a 12th juror and six alternates.
Cosby is accused of drugging and molesting a woman in 2004.
This story has been corrected to show that lawyers hope to get six alternates, not two.