June 27, 2017

Cosby Says He Won't Testify at Sexual Assault Trial

17 May 2017, 02:20 | Hilda Schwartz

Cosby says racism could be tied to sexual assault allegations

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In his first interview in more than two years, Bill Cosby says racism could be tied - at least in part - to the sexual assault allegations against him.

In an interview with Sirius XM's Michael Smerconish, Cosby spoke about the charges of racism that his daughter Ensa also made reference to Monday in a statement to The Breakfast Club.

'So many different - nefarious is a great word.

Cosby said his decision was meant to make his attorneys' jobs easier: "I just don't want to sit there and have to figure out what I believe is a truthful answer as to whether or not I'm opening a can of something that my lawyers are scrambling", he explained.

During an interview with SiriusXM host Michael Smerconish, he was asked if he concurred with Ensa and he said: "Could be, could be".

Bill Cosby believes that the 58 sexual-assault allegations he's facing "may very well be" due to racism.

"The piling on, so to speak, is a way and certainly an impressive way to get public opinion to come to the other side", Cosby said.

Bill Cosby says he doesn't expect to testify at his Pennsylvania sexual assault trial.

This is only one woman of more than 50 who has accused Cosby of similar crimes. "So it's not all, it's not every (accuser), but I do think that there's some".

Ahead of the trial, which starts next month, his camp has been steadily ramping up a public relations offensive, trying to soften his image and cast him as a victim of a witch hunt, reports CBS News correspondent Jericka Duncan.

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"This is a civil rights/grassroots campaign and that's all that I'm going to say", Wyatt said in an email to USA TODAY.

"I'm surprised by how much he did address, including revealing to me whether he will take the stand in his own defense", Smerconish said in a Facebook video.

In that deposition, Cosby described sexual liaisons with a string of young women, some of whom say he sexually assaulted them after giving them drugs or alcohol. Asked to clarify his remark, Cosby said, "Well, things were rescinded, and I'd like to get those things back, because the people who chose to make that decision then saw they'd made a mistake".

It's been almost three years since comedian Hannibal Burress made the world look at Bill Cosby's alleged sexual misconduct, and since then the 79 year-old has remained relatively quiet, not giving interviews to the press about the allegations.

Cosby's trial is slated for June 5th.

Cosby ended the interview with a quote from feminist Gloria Steinem and said he hoped to again experience "the laughter and the enjoyment" of writing and performing on stage.

"I want people to hear that and hear the strength in his voice", Andrew Wyatt said.

In a separate interview that the publicist provided in advance to Smerconish, Cosby said he'd like to be remembered for "being the guy that they made give back all the things they rescinded".

Two of Cosby's daughters recently released taped statements defending their father.

Cosby, 79, has said little publicly since October 2014, when a stand-up routine by comedian Hannibal Buress encouraged people to Google "Bill Cosby rape".

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