Skip to content
Link copied to clipboard

Constand says Cosby missed that she's gay

Andrea Constand, the former Temple University employee at the center of a 2005 sexual battery lawsuit against Bill Cosby, pushed back Tuesday against his claim that he is adept at reading sexual cues from women.

Andrea Constand. (Photo by Ron Bull/Toronto Star/ZUMA Press)
Andrea Constand. (Photo by Ron Bull/Toronto Star/ZUMA Press)Read more

Andrea Constand, the former Temple University employee at the center of a 2005 sexual battery lawsuit against Bill Cosby, pushed back Tuesday against his claim that he is adept at reading sexual cues from women.

The basis for her argument? Cosby failed to realize she was gay and dating a woman at the time they had what he has since described as a consensual sexual encounter.

"Despite his talent for interpreting female reactions to him, he did not realize [Constand] was gay until the police told him," her lawyer, Dolores Troiani, wrote.

That dig at the now 78-year-old actor-comedian - presented in a court filing Tuesday - was the latest jab in a war of pointed fingers, thinly veiled insinuations, and attempts at public shaming that has been fought in recent weeks between Cosby, Constand, and lawyers on both sides of the decade-old civil suit.

While both Constand, who now resides in Toronto, and Cosby are barred by a confidentiality agreement in their 2006 settlement from discussing the case publicly, recent court filings show that neither side is above using legal motions to take swipes at the other.

Consider Tuesday's needling of Cosby for failing to pick up on Constand's sexuality.

In an earlier motion, accusing Constand of violating the confidentiality agreement, Cosby's lawyer, Patrick J. O'Connor, zeroed in on a set of tweets Constand sent July 6 - the same day a federal judge in Philadelphia unsealed court filings containing excerpts of the deposition Cosby gave in her case.

Constand tweeted "YES!" and "SIR!" in quick succession.

O'Connor interpreted those messages as Constand weighing in publicly. Troiani, her lawyer, countered Tuesday that the messages had nothing to do with Cosby, but were sent in response to the U.S. Supreme Court decision nearly two weeks earlier legalizing gay marriage.

"In his narcissistic view of the world, [Cosby] believes that [Constand's] every tweet must be about him," she wrote. "He is as perceptive in this belief as he claims to be in his interpretation of nonverbal cues from women he wants to seduce."

That side reference to Cosby's testimony in the case - in which he described himself as "a pretty decent reader of people and their emotions in these romantic sexual things" - had not been previously mentioned by the comedian or his lawyers.

For its part, Cosby's legal team hasn't proved itself immune from the temptation to jab at Constand, either.

"Obviously, the 'heart' of [Constand's] bargain was not secrecy, but rather the receipt of money," O'Connor wrote of the 2006 settlement in a motion filed last week. Constand's recent complaints, he said, are "a sham and an obvious attempt to have her cake and eat it, too."

And lest anyone believe the animosity stops with Constand and Cosby, both O'Connor and Troiani have included their own e-mail exchanges in recent filings, which reveal neither is above trading personal barbs with the other.

"Your conduct at the deposition isn't exactly stellar and now Temple is coming after you," Troiani wrote in a July 20 e-mail to O'Connor, whose dual role as Cosby's lawyer and chairman of Temple University's board of trustees has recently come under scrutiny.

With so much shade being cast in all directions, it has at times become difficult to keep straight what exactly the lawyers are fighting about.

In recent months, more than 40 women have come forward accusing Cosby of sexual misconduct dating back decades - allegations that were stoked earlier this month by U.S. District Judge Eduardo Robreno's decision to unseal portions of the 2005 deposition, the only time Cosby is believed to have responded to sexual assault accusations under oath.

The excerpts revealed that Cosby admitted at the time to having obtained Quaaludes - or, as O'Connor has described them, "disco biscuits" - in the 1970s to use during consensual sex with women.

A full transcript of that deposition was later obtained by numerous court outlets.

Constand has pressed Robreno to release her from the terms of the 2006 confidentiality deal and unseal the full transcript of Cosby's deposition. She argues that public statements from various lawyers and Cosby backers have already violated its terms.

In her most recent filings, Troiani pointed to a series of interviews given last week by Washington lawyer Monique Pressley, in which she came to the comedian's defense by highlighting his legal team's recent court filings.

Constand "sits quietly listening to descriptions fed to the media of celebrity parties and 'disco biscuits,' " Troiani wrote Tuesday, adding that Constand "simply asks to be able to make a fair response to [Cosby's] spin machine."

For his part, Cosby contends Constand was the first to violate the terms of their agreement. O'Connor has pointed to her tweets and a recent "interview" he alleges she gave to the Toronto Sun. The story, published July 8, amounts to a series of refusals to comment stretched out into story form.

O'Connor has also accused Troiani of playing a role in the release of Cosby's deposition transcript to the New York Times, a charge Troiani has denied.

Robreno has yet to rule on either side's claims.