Norristown (United States) (AFP) – An American celebrity model told Bill Cosby’s sexual assault retrial on Thursday that the disgraced megastar raped her in 1982, sent her roses in rehab and made her want to punch him.
The now frail and isolated 80-year-old entertainer could spend the rest of his life behind bars if convicted of drugging and molesting Andrea Constand, 45, at his Philadelphia home in 2004.
The case has besmirched the legacy of the actor once adored by millions as “America’s Dad” for his role as lovable father and obstetrician Cliff Huxtable on the hit 1984-92 television series “The Cosby Show.”
On day four of Cosby’s retrial, the prosecution wrapped testimony from five other accusers — in addition to Constand — allowed to give evidence in what experts say presents a gargantuan hurdle for the defense.
Model Janice Dickinson, now a grandmother and the most famous accuser to take the stand in Norristown, a Philadelphia suburb, was 27 years old when she says Cosby raped her.
She said Cosby flew her first class from Bali, Indonesia, where she was on a modeling job, to the ritzy Lake Tahoe resort in the Sierra Nevada for what she thought would be talks about her career.
Over dinner he allegedly handed her a blue pill she thought would ease menstrual cramps, but which left her feeling “out of it” before Cosby raped her, leaving her “humiliated.”
“I remember the taste of his kiss, it smelt like cigars and espresso… Here’s ‘America’s Dad’ on top of me, a happily married man with five children… I remember thinking how very, very wrong it was.
“I wanted to punch him in the face,” she said.
Cosby’s defense has attempted to dismiss as “prosecution by distraction,” the remarkably similar stories of the five women, who all say they were drugged and assaulted by someone they considered a mentor figure.
– ‘True story’ –
For days, they have sought to present the women as hungry for money and publicity, but apart from pinpointing inconsistencies in minor details, have faced an uphill battle in attempts to shred their credibility.
Cosby’s lawyer Tom Mesereau grilled Dickinson over her 2002 ghost-written memoir, “No Lifeguard On Duty” that makes no mention of the rape.
“It’s all a fabrication there because I wanted the paycheck,” Dickinson said, repeatedly invoking “poetic license” to feed and educate her children.
“You lied to get a paycheck?” Mesereau hectored.
“I don’t lie, sir,” Dickinson said. “Today, I’m on a sworn Bible… to tell my true story.”
Dickinson claimed she told the writer the “entire horrific” experience, but was told it “would never get past Cosby’s legal team.”
“He’s a powerful guy and they told me he could ruin my career,” she added.
Mesereau then sought to paint her as a serial user of cocaine and pills and attacked her over her relationship with Sylvester Stallone, accusing him of telling him she was pregnant with his child.
“I had sex with two men that month. He wasn’t the only contender,” Dickinson replied. “I told him I was pregnant.”
“He stayed with me throughout the entire pregnancy,” she said.
After her daughter was born, a DNA test confirmed Stallone was not the father, Dickinson said, adding “thank God.”
– Blacked out –
The fifth accuser, Lise-Lotte Lublin, a Las Vegas teacher, said Cosby — who had introduced her to others as his daughter — gave her two shots of alcohol in 1989 when she was a 23-year-old model.
She says within minutes she became dizzy, and that he asked her to sit between his legs and stroked her hair, before she blacked out. She woke up in her own bed with no other recollection of what happened.
But Lublin now believes she was assaulted and that she never trusted Cosby enough to be alone with him again.
While 60 women have publicly accused Cosby, the three counts of aggravated indecent assault against Constand is the only criminal case to stick, as most of the alleged abuse happened too long ago to prosecute.
Constand is expected to testify on Friday.
Cosby’s first trial ended in a hung jury last June, with a sequestered panel hopelessly deadlocked after 52 hours of deliberations.
At the time of the alleged assault, Constand was the director of women’s basketball at Temple University, where the actor sat on the board of trustees.
Cosby said he gave the Canadian an over-the-counter antihistamine to relieve stress and that their relations were consensual.