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Crime

Who Is Andrea Constand, Bill Cosby’s Accuser?

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Matt Rourke/AP

Jury deliberations are in their second day in Bill Cosby‘s sex assault trial, with much of the focus on the testimony of accuser Andrea Constand, the woman whose initial claims against him were the first to become public and led to the current charges against him.

Constand, 44, has accused Cosby, 79, of drugging her and sexually assaulting her in 2004 in his Elkins Park, Pennsylvania, mansion. She first met Cosby in 2002, when, at 29, she was the director of operations for Temple University’s women’s basketball team and was introduced to Cosby by a mutual friend at the campus’ Liacouris Center.

From the moment he saw Constand, Cosby had “a romantic interest” in her, he testified in a deposition for a 2005 civil lawsuit she filed against him, a copy of which was obtained by PEOPLE.

His plan was to “meet her” and then “perhaps to have some moments with her that would have to do with some sort of friendship,” he said.

Cosby later allegedly contacted her at her Temple office to “discuss business-related matters,” according to the probable cause affidavit used to arrest Cosby in 2015 on three counts of aggravated indecent assault, for which he currently faces charges.

Cosby has pleaded not guilty.

According to Donna Motsinger, one of the original “Jane Does” who came forward in Constand’s 2005 civil suit and has since befriended Constand, told PEOPLE on Thursday that Constand was “ready, prepared” to testify. Motsinger adds, “She has no anxiety and is positive, as always.”

For the next 14 months, Cosby, who was 35 years her senior, nurtured their relationship by “inviting her to my house, talking to her about personal situations dealing with her life, growth, education, access and thoughts to how to acquire a more aggressive attitude, protecting oneself in business,” he said.

Then, in January 2004, Constand said Cosby invited her to his Elkins Park mansion to discuss her career plans, both agree in separate statements to investigators.

On three prior occasions, Cosby says he made romantic advances that she did not rebuff, while Constand says she did indeed rebuff them, according to the probable cause affidavit.

On that night in January 2004, Cosby says he gave her some Benadryl to help her relax. Constand says he told her that it was herbal medication. He says that what happened next between them sexually that evening was consensual.

She says that whatever he gave her left her so incapacitated she couldn’t speak or move while Cosby was “fondling her breasts, put his hand in her pants… penetrated her vagina with his fingers” and “took her right hand and placed it on his penis,” according to the arrest affidavit.

Constand, who is gay and was in a relationship with a woman at the time, told investigators she had “no interest whatsoever” in a romantic relationship with him, but had viewed Cosby as a “mentor” and felt they had a “sincere friendship.”

For most of the next year after the alleged assault, Constand struggled with nightmares, sometimes screaming in her sleep, according to her mother, Gianna Constand.

“There was a change in her daughter’s personality and she’d isolated herself from her friends,” according to the affidavit. “Mrs. Constand attempted to find out from her daughter what was wrong with her but the victim simply did not answer.”

Finally, on Thursday, Jan. 13, 2005, Andrea Constand told her mother.

“I had a flashback,” Andrea told police, explaining why she alerted her mother, according to a copy of her entire Jan. 22, 2005 statement to a Montgomery County, Pennsylvania, detective and a Cheltenham Police Department detective.

“I just called my mom and said, ‘I need to tell you about something that happened to me,'” Andrea told the detectives. “I said something happened a while back. I said it involved Mr. Cosby.”

“I said, ‘One night around this time last year I was invited to Mr. Cosby’s house and he gave me pills and he sexually violated me without me consenting,’ ” she said.

She hadn’t told anyone before because “there was an element of fear,” she told police. “Before I was going to say anything to anyone I had to put my own thoughts and feelings together. I was emotionally shocked. I was still traumatized about the whole situation. I had some emotional stress I was dealing with. I needed to come to terms with this on my own.”

An enraged Gianna Constand, who’d spoken to the entertainer many times previously, called Cosby. When she couldn’t reach him, she left a message on his voicemail. She and her daughter then contacted the police in Ontario, Canada, where they lived.

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Three days later, Cosby called Gianna back and they spoke for two hours, according to Cosby’s deposition.

“She said, ‘I want to know the truth, what you did to my daughter,'” Cosby said, according to his deposition. “She said three times, ‘This is a mother’s nightmare.’ … She said, ‘I don’t know how long it’s going to take Andrea to heal and I don’t know how long it’s going to take me to heal.’ ”

Cosby apologized and said, “‘What can I do?” according to his Jan. 26, 2005 statement to police. “She said, ‘Nothing.’ She said, ‘Your apology is enough.’ ”

Cosby promised to send Gianna Constand a copy of the prescription for what he gave to Andrea, but he never did. Afterward, he and his representatives offered Andrea money for graduate school.

In February 2005, then Montgomery County District Attorney Bruce L. Castor Jr. decided not to bring criminal charges against Cosby, citing “insufficient credible and admissible evidence.”

Andrea Constand then filed a civil lawsuit against Cosby. Thirteen women – identified at the time only as Jane Does, including Motsinger – then came forward saying he’d done the same thing to them. Several of the women subsequently made their identities and allegations public.

Although that civil lawsuit was settled out of court by Cosby in November 2006, it produced nearly 1,000 pages of testimony provided by the entertainer over four days in 2005 and 2006.

Cosby’s attorneys fought to keep that record confidential, but it was unsealed by a federal judge in May 2016 as part of a defamation lawsuit later filed by seven women who also allege that Cosby drugged and sexually assaulted them.

Cosby has repeatedly denied those accusations, which are among claims made by more than 60 women.

As part of Cosby’s deposition, he admitted he purchased Quaaludes to have sex with women. He said he was not in possession of the now-banned sedative when the alleged incident with Constand occurred.

The quaalude admissions were the reason the Montgomery County district attorney’s office reopened Constand’s criminal case last summer.