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Cosby’s image as father, family man on line as sex trial begins

MARYCLAIRE DALE
Associated Press

PHILADELPHIA — Bill Cosby goes on trial Monday in the only criminal case to emerge from the dozens of sexual assault allegations lodged against him.

FILE - In this combination of file photos, entertainer Bill Cosby pauses during an interview in Washington on Nov. 6, 2014, and Andrea Constand poses for a photo in Toronto on Aug. 1, 1987. Cosby goes on trial Monday, June 5, 2017, in suburban Philadelphia in a sexual assault case that will largely rest on the testimony of Constand. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci, left, and Ron Bull/Toronto Star/The Canadian Press via AP, right)

Cosby’s image as a father and family man helped fuel his extraordinary, 50-year career in entertainment.

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The 79-year-old actor’s life and legacy are on the line when his accuser takes the stand. The former college basketball manager says Cosby drugged and assaulted her in 2004.

Cosby says he had a romantic relationship with her. She will tell her story in public for the first time when she testifies.

The suburban Philadelphia trial judge hopes to keep the media from dominating the case the way it did O.J. Simpson’s 1995 murder trial.

Members of the media gather before Bill Cosby arrives for his sexual assault trial at the Montgomery County Courthouse in Norristown, Pa., Monday, June 5, 2017. Cosby goes on trial Monday in the only criminal case to emerge from the dozens of sexual assault allegations lodged against him. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

Cameras are banned in Pennsylvania courtrooms. The jury will be sequestered for the estimated two-week trial.