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Bill Cosby's lawyer tries to rattle Andrea Constand, as she takes the stand 'for justice'

Andrea Constand testifies at Bill Cosby's retrial that she got a $3.38 million settlement from him in a civil lawsuit, but that she is testifying in court simply "for justice."

Andrea Constand walks while breaking for lunch during Bill Cosby's sexual assault trial at the Montgomery County Courthouse, Friday, April 13, 2018, in Norristown, Pa. Constand, Cosby's chief accuser, took the witness stand Friday. (AP Photo/Corey Perrine, Pool)
Andrea Constand walks while breaking for lunch during Bill Cosby's sexual assault trial at the Montgomery County Courthouse, Friday, April 13, 2018, in Norristown, Pa. Constand, Cosby's chief accuser, took the witness stand Friday. (AP Photo/Corey Perrine, Pool)Read moreAP

Andrea Constand had barely settled onto the witness stand Friday morning when a prosecutor pressed her to address one of the defining issues of Bill Cosby's retrial: How much money did she get from Cosby to settle her lawsuit against him?

"Three million, three hundred and eighty thousand dollars," Constand calmly told the Montgomery County Court jury.

The details of that 2006 settlement, which remained confidential until this week, are central to Cosby's lawyers' strategy of portraying Constand, whose claims Cosby that drugged and sexually assaulted her led to his criminal charges, as a greedy liar who simply wanted his money.

Opening what could be the most critical testimony of the trial, prosecutors attempted to get  in front of Cosby's lawyers' attacks.

"Ms. Constand, why are you here?" Assistant District Attorney Kristen Feden asked her.

"For justice," Constand replied.

In more than two hours of grueling cross-examination that ended the day – and will resume Monday – lead defense lawyer Tom Mesereau opted not to bring up the settlement payout.

Instead, his questions had Constand skipping quickly from one seemingly unrelated topic to the next, moving swiftly through her past statements to police, old roommates, former employers, and people she once knew. The effect seemed to keep her – if not the entire courtroom — constantly back-footed.

"Were you ever involved in a pyramid scheme at Temple?" Mesereau said at one point in the midst of a back-and-forth about whether she had ever pursued a broadcasting career.

"I don't know what you're talking about," Constand replied. She later said she vaguely remembered forwarding an email a friend sent her – but that came only after Mesereau explained where he was going, and an interruption by the judge demanding to know whether any of it was relevant.

Earlier, the former basketball player had testified with the same calm demeanor she had displayed during two days on the witness stand before last June's mistrial.

"There [was] no upside" to cooperating with prosecutors after they approached her in 2015, almost a decade after settling the civil case, she testified. "I had moved on and I had healed an old wound, and now I could slowly feel this wound opening up again."

When asked Friday to identify Cosby as her alleged assailant, she paused and stared at him. Cosby, 80, leaned back in his chair and showed no reaction.

Constand, wearing a white blazer, orange shirt and gray pants, sat with a blanket over her lap on the witness stand. Although this jury will consider the backdrop of the five other women who testified this week that Cosby also drugged and sexually assaulted them, her testimony echoed the account she told a different panel last year:

Constand described meeting Cosby in 2002 through Temple women's basketball, where she worked as the director of operations, and getting to know him as he offered career advice. She described the 2004 night at his Cheltenham home when she said Cosby gave her three pills and said they would help her relax. He helped her to a couch after she told him she felt weak and was having double vision.

She said she woke up to Cosby's violating her.

"My vagina was being penetrated quite forcefully and I felt my breasts being touched," she said. "I wanted it to stop. I couldn't say a thing. I was trying to get my hands to move, my legs to move, and the message just wasn't getting there."

The next morning, Constand testified, she woke up and Cosby gave her a muffin and tea before she left.

"I knew what he had done to me, but it didn't actually sink in until I was driving home," she told jurors. "And driving home, I remember thinking, 'What just happened? And why did he do this to me?'"

Prosecutors also sought to deflate another prong in the defense strategy, asking Constand about her former Temple colleague Marguerite Jackson. Now a defense witness, Jackson is expected to testify that Constand once told her she intended to fabricate a claim of sexual assault against a celebrity to earn money.

Constand testified in June that she did not know Jackson. When asked on Friday, she said, "I recognize the name," but said she does not remember sharing a hotel room with Jackson on basketball team trips, which is where Jackson says Constand discussed the extortion plan.

Judge Steven T. O'Neill has ruled that Jackson can testify, but said that his order is subject to change, pending how other testimony goes at trial. Mesereau did not ask her about Jackson on Friday.

Constand appeared slightly confused or rattled at times as Mesereau peppered her with questions about her past actions and statements. But she insisted that her story has remained consistent, and that any differences in statements were merely due to small confusions.

"I was just trying to recall an enormous amount of information, and I was very nervous," she said to explain inconsistencies in a 2005 police interview. "I was just trying to piece it together."

At the end of the day Friday, Mesereau gave Constand a stack of her old emails to review. He promised to question her about them Monday.

Keep up with every development in Bill Cosby's case with our day-by-day recapstimeline, and explainer on everything you need to know about the case and its major players.