Cosby faces sexual assault charges again when civil trial begins

SANTA MONICA, Calif. (AP) – Bill Cosby will face charges of sexual abuse again Wednesday when lawyers make introductory statements in a civil lawsuit that is one of the latest legal lawsuits against the comedian.

Lawyers for 64-year-old Judy Houth will set out the evidence they plan to present that Cosby forced her to have sex in a Playboy mansion in 1975 when she was 16 years old. The case will depend on Hutt’s testimony, backed by photographs and other archival artifacts, to get to know the incident in time.

Cosby’s lawyers, who say there was no sexual assault, are likely to stress that the burden of proving the nearly 50-year-old case lies entirely with the plaintiffs. They admitted that Cosby drove Hutt to the Playboy mansion, as a photo from the visit shows, but said they believe she was not a minor when it happened.

The trial is one of the latest cases 85-year-old Cosby is facing after a Pennsylvania appeals court overturned his sentence for sexual assault and released him from prison 11 months ago. Several other sexual abuse lawsuits have been settled by his insurer against his will.

Cosby will not testify after a judge has ruled he can defend his privilege under the Fifth Amendment against self-incrimination. And he has no plans to leave his home in Pennsylvania to attend the trial, which takes place in a small courthouse in Santa Monica. Cosby’s representatives say glaucoma made him blind and made the journey too difficult.

Typically, the Associated Press does not name people who say they have been sexually abused unless they are speaking publicly, as Huth did.

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Follow AP Entertainment writer Andrew Dalton on Twitter: https://twitter.com/andyjamesdalton

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