COMMENTARY: Why Camille Cosby Opened up to the Black Press

Former District Attorney Bruce Castor: …there was “no question that Cosby relied upon my representation when he submitted to depositions in the civil case related to the allegations made by Constand.” (Photo: Screen capture from 2016 Reuters report video)
Former District Attorney Bruce Castor: …there was “no question that Cosby relied upon my representation when he submitted to depositions in the civil case related to the allegations made by Constand.”

By Stacy M. Brown, NNPA Newswire Correspondent
@StacyBrownMedia

(Editor’s note: Read Camille Cosby’s Op-Ed, “Vote for Justice, Equality and Democracy”)

In a telephone conversation more than two years ago, Bill Cosby expressed his concerns about media coverage of the mounting allegations against him.

“Let me say this,” he said. “I only expect the Black Press to uphold the standards of excellence in journalism and when you do that you have to go in with a neutral mind.”

Make no mistake, Cosby wasn’t asking for any special favors.

His wish was that all media, not just those under the Black Press umbrella, would simply do what the public at-large has expected of journalists since the beginning of time: fairness, balance and accuracy.

Shortly after Cosby’s comment, his wife Camille Cosby released a statement asking that the media at least “vet the stories of [her husband’s] accusers.”

Mrs. Cosby also wasn’t asking for special favors – she simply thought it important that we in the media do our jobs.

Throughout the course of both trials – the latter which has led to Mr. Cosby being convicted and sentenced to prison – the couple’s call for fair, balanced and accurate reporting has gone mostly unheeded.

Anyone attending the second trial knows that mainstream media fell far too short of fairness. Quite simply, there was a noticeable lack of balance and accuracy in the reporting.

This is why Mrs. Cosby has chosen the NNPA, the Black Press of America, to deliver an exclusive and unprecedented op-ed today, on the eve of the 2018 midterm elections.

And make no mistake about this either, because of the blatant and overwhelmingly irresponsible misreporting of facts like her husband’s infamous civil deposition and the twisting by some of Mr. Cosby’s words, Mrs. Cosby also held some reservations about speaking to the press because of her mistrust of the media in general.

After this reporter engaged in dialogue with one of her attorneys and held repeated conversations with the family’s trusted spokesperson, Andrew Wyatt of the Purpose P.R. Firm in Alabama, Mrs. Cosby decided now was the time to speak out to the Black Press.

With Tuesday’s midterm elections carrying such import, particularly among African Americans and other minorities, Mrs. Cosby not only wanted to convey her thoughts about her husband’s plight, but she felt it critical and urgent that she reach out to voters – some of whom probably can relate to what she and her family are now going through.

For example, voters can decide the fate of judges through recalls and other efforts.

They can also vote in or vote out district attorneys who fail to uphold the principles of their office. Also, they can send a strong message to any particular judge by voting against the party of that judge or district attorney.

Mrs. Cosby has filed judicial misconduct allegations against Steven O’Neill, the Montgomery County, PA., judge who presided over her husband’s trials. She has also cited the racist remarks during jury selection and the trial made by assistants to Montgomery County District Attorney Kevin Steele.

With accountability, perhaps some of O’Neill’s rulings would not have been so controversial or so blatantly adversarial toward Mr. Cosby.

With accountability, perhaps some of the actions of Steele and his staff would not have occurred.

Perhaps O’Neill would have recused himself after the revelation of his conflict with former District Attorney Bruce Castor who had sworn in an affidavit that he made a deal with Mr. Cosby that should have prevented even the first trial from occurring.

In 2006, Castor and Mr. Cosby agreed that the comedian would waive his right against self-incrimination and sit for a civil deposition – a deposition that Castor agreed could never be used against Mr. Cosby in any potential future prosecution.

“Upon my review of the affidavit provided by Mr. Castor at minimum, taking what was sworn as true, I would suggest there is a clear concern,” Attorney Michael A. Walker said in an interview this week. Walker helms a law firm in Norristown near the courthouse where Mr. Cosby was tried and convicted of aggravated indecent assault.

“The Law and those protections that we are afforded through our Constitution are there to reach just decisions for each citizen,” Walker said.

“Irrespective of guilt or innocence our system of jurisprudence is grounded in the notion of fair play. Moreover, the law with regard for recusal is pretty settled, to wit if there is a reasonable question of the impartiality of the Judge then he should be disqualified,” he said.

Walker continued:

“The law on disqualification goes further, stating that if the judge has a personal bias or prejudice concerning a party with personal knowledge of facts that are in dispute in the proceeding.

“It is hard to say what this will mean for Mr. Cosby’s appeal, but it is certainly something that should be reviewed because by the standards laid out above, again taking what sworn as true, what happened in that case didn’t meet the fairness test.”

Dr. Benjamin F. Chavis, Jr., President and CEO of the NNPA stated, “We value the opinion and timely call to action to vote from Mrs. Camille Cosby.  We note with appreciation that she trusted the NNPA to publish her Op Ed.”

About Stacy M. Brown 75 Articles
A Little About Me: I'm the co-author of Blind Faith: The Miraculous Journey of Lula Hardaway and her son, Stevie Wonder (Simon & Schuster) and Michael Jackson: The Man Behind The Mask, An Insider's Account of the King of Pop (Select Books Publishing, Inc.) My work can often be found in the Washington Informer, Baltimore Times, Philadelphia Tribune, Pocono Record, the New York Post, and Black Press USA.

3 Comments

  1. Im sorry but Mrs. Cosby you are too little too late. Amazing how vocal you are being that your husband isnt free anymore. You stood by silently when your husband spoke negatively about African Americans and that blacks have no one to blame but themseives. So pathetic when black celebrities are embraced by whites they excoriate black america but when they commit a wrong and whites treat them as just another N-Word that celebrity has an epiphany to speak up on racist whites. Also, you speak out a day before elections about getting out to vote,where was your voice when black senior citizens your age was removed from a bus for trying to exercise their right to vote just a couple of weeks ago? Sorry I’m not buying what you are selling.

  2. No one reading this, and no one in the media, can tell you why Cosby went to trial. When presented with the reasons why Cosby’s trial could not LEGALLY go forward (the no-brainer being that the case had already been settled out of court), Judge O’Neill “deliberated” on the legalities overnight, then came back and said, “This trial is going forward.” When asked WHY, he answered, “I don’t have to give my reasons.” No media comment on that.

    Cosby may be a rapist or he may not. I don’t know, neither do you, and neither does our media. The reality is that we haven’t been given a reason to believe this thing that started as a rumor in the 60s. The media went to extremes to plant the lie in our minds that Cosby admitted in his infamous deposition to drugging women without their knowledge and raping them. You won’t find a quote in the deposition to support that. The media ran Cosby-Raped-Me stories that the most basic fact-checking showed to be IMPOSSIBLE (see Louise Moritz, for one example), and ran them over and over again for more than five years. We were told that all Hollywood knew about Cosby’s raping habits – “every hairdresser in Hollywood knew,” said Roseanne. And then it turns out that the guy who’s supposed to want sex with inert, unconscious bodies has sex instead with girls on Quaaludes. This doesn’t fit the MO, it destroys it – unless our media fills in the gaps with still more lies. So CNN puts a drug expert on the air to tell us, “If you take a Quaalude, you’re going to sleep. No question of that.” A generation of us can tell you that that was another lie. All we’ve seen is what mob mentality can do when it is fueled by a corrupt media and a corrupt justice system.

    In court, it was established that Andrea Constand lies just like a sociopath. She doesn’t tell the kind of lies people tell when the police trip them up. She tells the kind of calculated, damning lies that can get an innocent man put in prison for 30 years. But then a rape expert testifies that “lying is a consequence of rape,” and Andrea’s criminal lying is excused without media comment.

    During deliberations, the jury asked Judge O’Neil for the definition of consent. There is a legal definition, and it is a judge’s duty to ensure that the jury makes its decision based on legalities. Should a jury bring in a verdict that disregards legalities, it is a judge’s duty to overturn that verdict. But Judge O’Neill ensured that Cosby’s verdict would be reached without regard for the law, when he told the jury they would have to “make up their own minds” regarding the definition of consent. Guess what: no jury gets to do that; juries don’t make laws.

    The moronic masses believe Cosby’s a rapist because the media played it that way, relentlessly. Maybe he is, again I don’t know and neither do you. But did he have a fair trail? Absolutely not. He had the kind of trail that satisfies the mob mentality of social media. Gloat away, but you’re a very stupid crowd.

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