A judge put on hold former supermodel Janice Dickinson’s defamation lawsuit against Bill Cosby pending the outcome of the comedian’s appeal of a decision allowing the case to move forward.
Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Debre Katz Weintraub issued her ruling, granting a motion by Cosby’s lawyers to put a hold on future hearings in light of the automatic stay created by the comedian’s appeal.
Cosby’s legal team is appealing Weintraub’s ruling on their motion to dismiss Dickinson’s lawsuit on free-speech grounds. On March 29, Weintraub granted part of the motion, but allowed the thrust of Dickinson’s lawsuit to move forward against the former “I Spy” television series co-star.
Dickinson sued Cosby last May 20, saying she has been re-victimized and her reputation has suffered because of denials by his then-lawyer, Martin Singer, of her allegations that the comedian drugged and raped her in a Lake Tahoe hotel room more than 30 years ago.
She filed an amended complaint in November, adding Singer as a defendant. However, Weintraub ruled on Feb. 9 that Dickinson could not revise the complaint to add Singer because the model was aware of the lawyer’s alleged comments before the original lawsuit was filed.
Last month, Dickinson’s attorneys appealed Weintraub’s ruling that removed Singer as a defendant. The model’s lawyers also have filed a motion asking Weintraub to allow them to file an amended complaint that would name Singer, but a hearing on that motion is now on hold because of the stay on the case.
Dickinson, 61, is one of dozens of women who have accused Cosby, 78, of sexual assault. Cosby fired Singer in October.
The comedian had not been charged with a crime until Dec. 30, when he was charged in Pennsylvania with aggravated indecent assault. Prosecutors allege he sexually assaulted Andrea Constand, a former Temple University employee, in January 2004 after plying her with drugs and wine.
The judge’s hold order was granted Wednesday.
—City News Service