LIONEL PODCAST: Even Cosby the Rapist Has Rights

Even the rapist Cos deserves his day in court. “Everyone is entitled in full equality to a fair and public hearing by an independent and impartial tribunal, in the determination of his rights and obligations and of any criminal charge against him.” Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Art. 10. OK, I know what you’re thinking. You’re thinking that no one is denying Bill Cosby the right to a fair trial but I respectfully disagree. There’s more to constitutional rights and the trial itself. There are issues such as pre-accusatory delay and constitutional speedy trial and due process principles in general that militate against much of what has been leveled against this very sick and predatory man. Even guilty people are privy to procedural safeguards. And he’s guilty.

This is personal. And while he seems to be supremely guilty of at least one of the 42+ cases as of November 2014, the judge’s depiction of Cosby as a “public moralist” blows this legal analyst’s mind. He could have just said that two years had elapsed, there were no objections cited, so the sealing provisions have been lifted by operation of law and local rule. But, no, he made an example of “America’s dad [rapist].”

Unseal it! “According to documents obtained by the Associated Press and released on Monday, Bill Cosby stated under oath in 2005 that he had obtained Quaaludes to give them to young women with whom he wanted to have sex; he further admitted giving the drugs to at least one woman who later claimed he sexually assaulted her and said that he gave Benadryl to another woman who accused him of assaulting her while she was sedated.” Guardian

Let’s follow along, shall we? This is a marvelous article infra on the Cosby affair and worth your perusal. As is this companion piece. Note this most pertinent aspect as to how the District Court got around the deposition that was presumed “sealed.” And as you will seem Judge Eduardo Robreno clearly dislikes Herr Cosny.

U.S. District Judge Eduardo Robreno issued a 25-page memo outlining his reasoning. Here’s how he explains it:

— The court’s rules state that unless there is an objection, documents filed in the court will be unsealed automatically two years after the conclusion of litigation.

— When the AP filed a request to have the documents unsealed, Cosby’s attorneys objected, saying it would violate Cosby’s right to privacy by making public, among other things, “intimate knowledge about his sex life.” Cosby’s lawyer also argued that the release would embarrass Cosby and would violate the confidentiality agreement signed by the two parties.

— Robreno dismissed all those arguments.

— Perhaps the most intriguing part is that Robreno concluded that Cosby should be thought of more as a public servant. Previous courts have held that public servants, or politicians, give up some of the privacy protections afforded to regular citizens or even public figures.

— So, how did Robreno make that leap? He argued that while Cosby is clearly a public figure, when he talks about issues of public policy like unwed mothers and crime, he becomes a “public moralist,” which, like it might for a public servant, opens him up to “legitimate public scrutiny.”

Wow. That’s all I have to say. Wow. All the judge had to do was say, sorry, Sparky. two years have elapsed and that ends that debate. But no, he went a tad further in breaking off in Dr. Benadryl.

%d bloggers like this: