Bill Cosby‘s wife can refuse to answer certain questions in her upcoming deposition, a judge has ruled.
In a ruling on Thursday, U.S. district judge Mark G. Mastroianni found that Camille Cosby can refuse to answer questions prohibited by Massachusetts’ marital disqualification rule.
In a ruling in December, a different judge found that the marital disqualification rule applies only to trial testimony, not to deposition testimony. However, Mastroianni found otherwise in Thursday’s decision.
“[T]he court concludes that the Massachusetts marital disqualification rule applies to deposition testimony and that Deponent’s counsel, when appropriate, may instruct her not to provide testimony barred by the rule,” Mastroianni’s ruling said.
Massachusetts’ marital disqualification rule decrees, “In any proceeding, civil or criminal, a witness shall not testify as to private conversations with a spouse occurring during their marriage.”
Cosby is being sued by Tamara Green and other accusers who claim they were defamed by statements issued on behalf of the comedian after they accused Cosby of sexual misconduct.
The comedian has been accused of rape or sexual assault by dozens of women, many of whom claim that he had drugged them beforehand. In addition to multiple civil cases, Cosby faces a criminal case in Pennsylvania, based on the accusations of former Temple University employee Andrea Constand. Cosby has denied the accusations.
Pamela Chelin contributed to this report.