By Stacy M. Brown (NNPA Newswire Contributor)
NORRISTOWN—At 11:06 Thursday morning and after more than 30 hours of deliberation, the jury in the Bill Cosby sexual assault trial has told the judge they are deadlocked on all three charges against the iconic comedian.
The panel, made up of seven men and five women—including one African-American male and female —had previously asked a half dozen questions, before telling Judge Steven O’Neill that they could not come to a unanimous decision.
Despite the length of time already spent deliberating and a defense motion for a mistrial, O’Neill ordered the exhausted panel to continue to try and reach a verdict. He gave the panel what’s known as an “Allen Charge” or a “Spencer Charge,” in which they are urged to continue as O’Neill reminded them of their responsibility as jurors.
“Do not feel compelled to surrender your honest belief,” said O’Neill.
The comedian is charged with three counts of aggravated indecent assault stemming from a 2004 incident with former Temple University employee Andrea Constand.
Former Montgomery County District Attorney Bruce Castor previously declined to prosecute Cosby after an investigation and a case that Castor called too weak to pursue.
Cosby did pay Constand an undisclosed sum in 2006, two years after the alleged incident, and the two agreed to never to discuss their relationship.