NORRISTOWN –– Bill Cosby told authorities that he gave Andrea Constand allergy pills to help her relax before what he described as consensual “petting,” a police sergeant testified at the entertainer’s sexual assault trial on Thursday.
In 2005, Richard Schaffer of the Cheltenham Township police, then a detective, interviewed Cosby as part of the initial investigation into Constand’s allegation that the comedian, now 79, drugged and sexually assaulted her at his Philadelphia-area home a year earlier.
Cosby’s words were read at the beginning of a new phase in the Norristown, Pennsylvania, trial, now in its fourth day. Prosecutors intend to use Cosby’s statements to police and in a deposition from Constand’s 2005 lawsuit to show he followed a pattern of giving young women medication before sexually assaulting them.
Constand and another accuser, Kelly Johnson, testified this week that Cosby gave them pills that left them barely conscious and unable to resist.
Cosby, star of the 1980s hit television family comedy The Cosby Show, has faced similar allegations from dozens of women. He has denied all of the claims.
Only Constand’s accusation has resulted in criminal charges because the other alleged incidents are too old to prosecute.
Prosecutors walked Schaffer through his notes of an interview with Cosby at his lawyers’ office in January 2005, days after Constand reported the incident.
“Did Andrea ever tell you to stop?” the detective conducting the interview asked Cosby.
“No,” he said.
“Was Andrea conscious?” the detective asked.
“Yes,” Cosby said.
Cosby said he regularly took two Benadryl pills to help him sleep and told police he gave Constand one and a half such pills after they discussed her lack of sleep.