Cosby claims self-defense as hearings beginUPDATED 7:33 PM HST Apr 21, 2014Video Transcript
New tonight... The Marine accused of killing a prostitute in Waikiki says SHE ATTACKED FIRST. Nathaniel Cosby's court martial hearing opened today with this new claim of self- defense... Cosby admits he killed 29-year old Ivanice Harris, but says he had no choice. KITV4's Andrew Pereira is standing by live in the newsroom with the latest. Andrew? Paula, Cosby's attorneys claim he had to fight back when Harris attacked him with a knife. However prosecutors say this is another example of Cosby still trying to cover his tracks. Starting with a stunner... lawyers for Nathanial Cosby admitted today at Marine Corps Base Hawaii... Cosby's the one who dumped the nude body of Ivanice "Ivy" Harris under a tree near Yokahama Bay. But they claim Cosby killed Harris in self-defense after the prostitute repeatedly slashed him with a lipstick knife during a dispute over money. In opening statements, defense attorney Lt. Col. Clay Plummer said... "This was a struggle from moment one, and at the end, they're both on the floor." However the prosecution believes Cosby is a killer... and military lawyer Jesse Schweig said... "People that commit crimes always leave clues, it's just up to a good detective to follow the trail." There's no shortage of circumstantial evidence against Cosby. According to police, Harris was working as a prostitute in the early morning hours of May 16 last year when she met Cosby at Kelley O'Neil's in Waikiki. Surveillance video from an elevator at the Aston Waikiki Beach Hotel where Cosby was staying shows him holding hands with Harris and kissing her. A few hours later, Cosby is again seen on video... this time dragging a large duffle bag out of the hotel. Two pings from a cell phone tower also place Cosby in Waianae on the morning Harris is believed to have been killed. After more than an hour-and-a- half of questioning, seven members of the court- martial jury pool were dropped, leaving behind 7 men and 1 woman to decide Cosby's fate. Harris' parents Patricia Harris and Marion Ivan Greer Jr. are attending the trial, which has now become a question of why Harris was killed, not who did it. Cosby is charged with un-premeditated murder, murder while engaging in an inherently dangerous act, obstructing justice and attempting to patronize a prostitute. If convicted on the most serious charge, he could get life in prison without parole. Cosby was on Oahu last year on temporary duty from Japan. Harris is originally from Oregon, but was visiting the island from Las Vegas.