Will Your Spousal Privilege Be Revoked Just Like Camille Cosby ?
By: Kia Soto & Jennifer L. Vickers
Camille Cosby Being Deposed May Affect Your Marriage Too!
Last week Camille Cosby, 71, was forced to testify against her husband in Massachusetts, even though her attorneys fought for months to prevent her from being deposed. Her attorneys argued spousal privileges, and that Mrs. Cosby “has had no involvement with the facts or allegations underlying this defamation case.”
A Federal U.S. District Judge superseded the spousal privileges and ordered Mrs. Cosby to be deposed with limited questioning; citing she acted as his manager part of their marriage. Limited questioning? Fair; I suppose considering her only other option would have been being picked up by the U.S. Federal Marshals.
Unfortunately, some judges interpret the law to fit their personal gain and without discretion, controlling hearings and trials unfold in the media and their courtrooms.
The deposition is for a civil case, and anything Mrs. Cosby says can be used in the criminal prosecution
against her husband. Bill Cosby is facing criminal charges in Pennsylvania for the same case he actually
settled over 10 years ago for an undisclosed amount of money.
What’s scary is many think what is happening to the Cosby’s WILL NOT affect them and they are wrong. What the judiciary system is allowing is an overreach and this may set new legal guidelines for
spousal privilege when the courts are allowed to step in and play third party to married couples. Which
can and will weaken our constitutional and legal rights.
Boston Herald featured an article by Evan Slavitt, former assistant U.S. attorney and former Republican candidate for Massachusetts attorney general.
“Precedent at stake in Bill Cosby deposition” In this article the editor points out what privilege is, the importance of it in a strong marriage and how it’s a colossal waste of time to question Mrs. Cosby in “he said, she said” case.
“Bill Cosby’s alleged sexual impropriety is not only a colossal waste
of time and money, it is fundamentally wrong. And as a precedent, it
is an attack on the institution of marriage that could have far-reaching consequences?
The United States District Court in Springfield should have sent the
plaintiffs’ lawyers packing with a good scolding. Massachusetts law is
clear. Except in very limited circumstances, a person cannot be forced
to testify against his or her spouse on conversations that take place
during the marriage. This “spousal privilege” is based on the idea
that spouses should be allowed to talk to each other freely, without
fear that some third party will nose their way into the most intimate
Slavitt writes, in this case, as far as can be discerned, no one thinks that Camille Cosby witnessed anything. All she could possibly know is what her husband of five decades said to her.
It was reported that the day Mrs. Cosby sat through a 7-hour deposition, only 2 ½ hours were actual testimony. Joseph Cammarata, attorney for the plaintiff said most of the time was spent going back and forth between lawyers about what Camille could and could not say. Cammarata and his legal team were well aware that Mrs. Cosby could answer ONLY limited questions, yet that didn’t stop Cammarata from asking questions that were not allowed.
Interesting that Cammarata didn’t follow the judge’s ruling regarding limited questioning, and is now requesting that Mrs. Cosby be deposed another time. Is Cammarata so above the law that he doesn’t honor the honorable?
Another thing that consumed Cammarata’s time was his communication with the press. The attorney was spotted several times during the deposition releasing statements and talking with the media.
Cammarata told the press “I know that you’re wondering why I’m not deposing Mrs. Cosby and I’m out here with you, but we had to call the judge. My goal is to only get her observations, but she is refusing to
At one time Cammarata even attempted in a joking manner to scold the media, saying “all the cameras available with high power lenses and ‘only’ one photo of Camille. Ashame!”
Cammarata was networking with the reporters during the deposition – inviting some of the journalist and reporters out for drinks!
Seems as Cammarata used this deposition as an opportunity to seek self-promoting stardom, develop stronger media ties, “observe,” embarrass, humiliate Mrs. Cosby and waste the courts time.
Cammarata said himself that Camille Cosby, never became emotional, “She is someone that was reserved, and I got the sense she really didn’t want to be there.”
Cammarata is not taking his own words into consideration – he fought to get her deposed yet used the time carelessly – not prepared, not obeying the judge’s orders with “limited questioning” and politicking with the press.
Is it fair to Mrs. Cosby or the tax payers to keep this fishing expedition going? Is it appropriate that her spousal privilege was compromised and revoked?
Mrs. Cosby is scheduled to be deposed again on March 14th, 2016.
It’s one thing to abuse power- but what’s worst is the fear of a judge NOT using his power to enforce justice and one making unprecedented legal judgement.
Cammarata said Mrs. Cosby knows a great deal about her husband’s life claiming she was the main source of information regarding Cosby’s character, sexual proclivity and financial dealings. NOW Cammarata is seeking to depose over 100 people, including one of Cosby’s close friends Quincy Jones, 83. Cammarata seems to think Jones may have some knowledge that will help his case against Cosby.
Clearly Cammarata has mastered the art of harassing elderly black people.