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Bill Cosby Retrial: Comedian’s Expert Witness Jokes He’s Unlicensed, Except for His ‘Driver’s License’

Prosecutors grill defense witness on his qualifications, with sometimes humorous results

On a day when only expert witnesses testified in Bill Cosby’s retrial, prosecutor Stewart Ryan thoroughly grilled the defense’s toxicology expert Dr. Harry Milman on Thursday. But Dr. Milman’s knowledge of the forensic side of toxicology seemed only tangential, as he at one point cited a Viagra-using perpetrator as an instance of “drug-induced sexual assault.”

Ryan was able to coax admissions out of Milman such as that he’s currently unlicensed, except for a “driver’s license,” Milman joked, and that he has only written three articles for publication regarding his toxicological studies that weren’t about cancer.

Milman has, however, written two fiction books — oddly enough, about a forensic toxicologist who is called as an expert witness.

In what was probably Ryan’s most merciless cross-examination of the retrial thus far, he continually put Milman at a stammering loss for words regarding his own credentials and explanations of why he testified that Benadryl wasn’t a hypnotic, even though one of his very own citations included a sentence about how new studies are emerging that Benadryl’s active ingredient, diphenhydramine, is in fact being used as a hypnotic.

Citing that Quaaludes, a drug that Cosby admitted to administering to women for sex in the past, had become illegal by 1984, Milman also seemed bewildered when confronted with the fact that prosecutor Kevin Steele’s own office seized “thousands” of illegally manufactured Quaalude pills in a local 2002 case.

Earlier Thursday, Cosby’s defense team’s motion for a mistrial — the team’s fifth such attempt — was denied. Cosby’s team contended that the prosecution’s cross-examination of their witness, Marguerite Jackson, “tainted” the jury by implying that the comedian’s lawyers had “created” her statement.

Judge Steven T. O’Neill struck down the motion as having “simply no grounds for a mistrial” and being raised too late. He also scolded the defense for having just one witness ready for the day — the same day the court would hear testimony from the prosecution’s final witness. Both will be called to testify as expert witnesses.

Cosby is being re-tried on three counts of aggravated indecent assault, stemming from former Temple University employee Andrea Constand’s accusation that the comedian molested her in 2004 at his home outside of Philadelphia.

Cosby’s initial trial in the matter ended in a mistrial in July 2017 after the jury was unable to reach a verdict following five days of deliberations.