A preliminary hearing in Bill Cosby’s criminal case in Pennsylvania was postponed after the entertainer’s attorneys filed a motion to dismiss the case and disqualify disqualify Montgomery County District Attorney Kevin R. Steele.
Administrative Judge Steven O’Neill pushed back the hearing that was scheduled for Thursday. Instead, he scheduled a hearing for Feb. 2 to consider the motion to dismiss the charges.
Cosby’s attorneys filed a motion earlier this week to throw out the three felony counts of aggravated indecent assault. They contend that in 2005, then-District Attorney Bruce L. Castor Jr. agreed that Cosby would never be prosecuted in connection with Andrea Constand’s allegations of sexual assault in 2004.
“This agreement was made for the express purpose of inducing Mr. Cosby to testify fully in Ms. Constand’s civil litigation against him,” his attorneys wrote. “In reliance on that agreement, Mr. Cosby testified in 2006 without invocation of his Constitutional rights of self incrimination. Now, to fulfill campaign promises, the newly-elected District Attorney has repudiated the agreement and has based these criminal charges on the very testimony Mr. Cosby gave in reliance on the Commonwealth’s non-prosecution agreement.”
They also argue that the charges should be dismissed on due process grounds because “the ten year delay in bringing these charges was inexcusable and has greatly prejudiced Mr. Cosby.”
If the charges are not dismissed, Cosby’s team would like to disqualify Steele for “repeated violations of ethical rules,” including injection of the Cosby allegations into a political campaign even though he was serving as assistant district attorney and was involved in the investigation of the allegations.
Steele’s office plans to file a response.
“We are not surprised by this filing, which has no merit,” Steele said in a statement. “My office does not try any case in the court of public opinion. We try them in a court of law. We will be filing a response to their motion, and we will let our legal response to their motion speak for itself.”