Bill Cosby will not be deposed next month in a lawsuit accusing him of defaming seven women who accuse him of sexual assault, but his wife will be, a federal judge said Wednesday.
U.S. Magistrate Judge David Hennessy agreed to hold off on the comedian’s deposition, scheduled for Feb. 22, as Cosby now faces criminal charges in Pennsylvania. His wife, Camille, will instead be deposed that day, the judge said.
Camille Cosby had been set to be deposed Jan. 6, but Hennessy agreed to a postponement as her lawyers appealed his decision to deny their bid to dismiss the subpoena outright.
Hennessy on Wednesday also rejected a proposal by the comedian’s lawyers that would have kept a significant amount of material in the case out of the public eye.
Instead, he proposed more limited protections focused on certain sensitive information that might be disclosed in depositions, such as Social Security numbers, bank accounts and addresses. The order would not affect other materials and documents gathered in the pretrial discovery phase.
Both sides in court agreed to put the procedure in writing by Jan. 20.
The 78-year old actor was charged Dec. 30 with drugging and sexually assaulting a woman inside his Cheltenham home near Philadelphia in 2004. It’s the first criminal case brought against him, and he faces a Feb. 2 preliminary hearing on those charges in Montgomery County.