Bill Cosby continued his vigorous defense of his innocence and his famous brand last Thursday as the iconic, but troubled, comedian’s legal team argued that public statements in his defense are not defamatory.
Cosby’s lawyer, Angela C. Argusa, filed an opening appellate brief in the ongoing case against reality television personality and former model Janice Dickinson.
The brief asks the California Court of Appeals to consider whether a person – or his lawyer – should be allowed to proclaim his innocence publicly when faced with serious allegations of misconduct in the international press.
“[Dickinson’s] outrageous public persona could not have suffered from being called a liar,” Argusa said in court filings.
In November 2014, as Cosby faced an onslaught of decades-old, but what his team called “unverified” accusations of sexual assault, Dickinson went on national television and claimed for the first time that in 1982 she was assaulted by the legend.
Cosby’s team pointed out that in Dickinson’s own 2002 autobiography and in an interview with the “New York Observer,” she described that alleged encounter very differently.
Dickinson said Cosby invited her to sleep with him, and when she refused, he turned cold and slammed a door in her face, Cosby’s lawyers argued.
It was only after other women came forward against Cosby in 2014 that Dickinson changed her story in a series of public appearances, claiming she was “raped,” his lawyers said.
A lawyer representing the “I-Spy” star at the time issued statements to the press, calling out Dickinson for “her self-serving” change of story.
She then sued Cosby for defamation, a claim that was initially thrown out by the Superior Court. However, the court ultimately allowed the lawsuit proceed.
Source: Black Press USA | Stacy M. Brown