Bill Cosby is now “legally blind” and his memory has “substantially declined” so he will have trouble defending himself and identifying his accusers, his attorneys said in a 13-page brief filed late Thursday.
“How can a 79-year-old blind man defend himself against a claim that he sexually assaulted someone he supposedly met once, half a century ago?” states the brief, filed by Cosby attorneys Brian McMonagle and Angela Agrusa and obtained by PEOPLE.
“The answer is simple: He cannot, and the Commonwealth knows he cannot … Without his eyesight, Mr. Cosby cannot even determine whether has has ever even seen some of his accusers, let alone develop defenses and gather exculpatory evidence,” the brief continues. “Moreover, Mr. Cosby’s memory has substantially declined in the last decade.”
Cosby has been registered with the Massachusetts Commission for the Blind, according to the filing. A copy of this report will be introduced at a Nov. 1, 2016 hearing on the case.
In December, the Montgomery County, Pennsylvania, district attorney charged the 79-year-old Cosby with three counts of aggravated indecent assault for allegedly drugging and sexually assaulting former Temple University employee Andrea Constand, now 43, at his Elkins Park, Pennsylvania, mansion in January 2004.
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Constand went to authorities a year later, but then-Montgomery County District Attorney Bruce L. Castor Jr. declined to file criminal charges.
Cosby has pleaded not guilty to the criminal charges and has denied similar claims from more than 50 women.
Cosby’s attorneys argue that his due process rights were violated by the lengthy delay in arresting him so the case should be dismissed.
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A hearing is set starting Tuesday to deal with this pre-trial issue and two others: Whether Cosby’s depositions in a civil suit he settled in 2006, which became public in July 2015, should be allowed in as evidence; and whether 13 other women with similar claims as Constand be allowed to testify at Cosby’s trial.
In the latest filing, Cosby’s defense team took issue with Montgomery District Attorney Kevin Steele’s claims that Cosby’s depositions contained three pieces of information not known in 2005, such as that Constand’s allegations of assault involved “digital penetration,” a key requirement for the felony charges Cosby now faces.
The defense argued the state “had the exact same information” in 2005.
Steele had no immediate comment on the latest filing. Cosby’s trial is scheduled to begin in June.