Jurors sent home after a day of deadlock and deliberation

Bill Cosby leaves the Montgomery County Courthouse during his sexual assault trial Wednesday

Bill Cosby leaves the Montgomery County Courthouse during his sexual assault trial Wednesday

The Pennsylvania judge overseeing Bill Cosby's sexual assault trial said on Friday he would allow the jurors to keep working to break a deadlock as long as they are willing.

"We can not come to a unanimous consensus on any of the counts", O'Neill read. Shortly after 9 pm, after 39 hours of deliberations over four days, he dismissed them for the evening and ordered them to return in the morning.

Deliberations will resume tomorrow.

The jury - which was made up of four white women, six white men, one black woman and one black man - was selected in Pittsburgh in late May and has been sequestered near Philadelphia for the duration of the trial.

"Each of you has a duty to consult with one another and to deliberate with a view to reaching an agreement if it can be done without violence to your individual judgment", he read from Pennsylvania law.

O'Neill told the defense that until the jury says it is still deadlocked, there was little he could do but provide them with any evidence they request.

O'Neill said the alternates are permitted to use their laptops while they wait for the verdict.

Cosby faces three counts of aggravated indecent assault.

Cosby, 79, was inside the courthouse waiting for the jury verdict on charges of drugging and sexually assaulting Andrea Constand, then a college administrator, in 2004.

This is published unedited from the IANS feed.

A 2005 police interview during which Cosby acknowledged giving her pills and fondling her, along with related testimony from the suburban Philadelphia detective who read it into the record.

As reporters streamed out of the courtroom, poet and author Jewel Allison - one of the dozens of women who have accused Cosby of assaulting them - burst into tears.

The Cosby trial marks a stunning fall from grace for an entertainer loved for decades by millions as "America's Dad" for his seminal role as a lovable father and obstetrician on hit TV series "The Cosby Show". They introduced telephone records that showed Constand calling Cosby twice on Valentine's Day in 2004 - about a month after the alleged assault.

Cosby spokesman Andrew Wyatt called on the judge to end the wait and declare a mistrial. According to the Associated Press, the judge told them to keep trying to arrive at a decision.

Following the announcement, a spokesperson for Cosby said he is 'happy'.

The jury this week has asked to rehear large excerpts of trial testimony, including several versions of the incident that both Cosby and Constand have given over the years. The district attorney's office declined to comment.

The jury's first question pertained to Cosby's admission that he gave Constand three blue pills.

Victoria Valentino, who has alleged Cosby of sexually assaulting her in 1970 and has been present throughout the trial, said it was "maddening" that jurors could hear Constand's testimony and still be stuck. "That's the question", said criminal lawyer Alan J. Tauber, who wasn't involved in the case.

The Associated Press does not typically identify people who say they are victims of sexual assault unless they grant permission, which Constand has done.

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