27 April 2018Hot off the Press
Image credit: Brendan McDermid (Reuters)
Bill Cosby has been found guilty on all three counts of aggravated indecent sexual assault after 14 hours of deliberation in court on Thursday.
A jury of seven men and five women reached a unanimous guilty verdict that could see Mr Cosby, aged 80, serving up to 10 years imprisonment on each of the three counts.
The actor and comedian, famously known for his role on the television sitcom The Cosby Show, was accused of drugging and sexually assaulting Andrea Constand, a Temple University employee, at his suburban Philadelphia home in 2004.
Mr Cosby has said the encounter was consensual.
The verdict came after a two week re-trial where prosecutors placed five other women on the stand who also testified to being drugged and sexually assaulted by Mr Cosby.
Mr Cosby lashed out at district attorney Kevin Steele during the re-trial after he voiced concerns that the defendant could be a flight risk and that he owned a private plane. Mr Cosby became aggravated and responded, “I’m sick of him!”
The judge decided that Mr Cosby could remain free on bail while he awaits sentencing however he is not allowed to leave the state of Pennsylvania and a GPS tracking system would be put into place.
After the court session concluded, Mr Cosby’s lawyers declared that they would appeal the verdict, saying, “We are very disappointed by the verdict, we don’t think Mr Cosby is guilty of anything and our fight is not over.”
The case of Andrea Constand has been the only incident to be criminally prosecuted amid a bombardment of accusations from over 60 women who claim Mr Cosby also drugged and molested them over the course of five decades.
Shrieks and cries from the accusers erupted in the courtroom as the verdict was announced.
Celebrity lawyer, Gloria Allred, who has previously represented several of Mr Cosby’s accusers, made a triumphant statement on the courthouse steps, saying, “Justice has been done! We are so happy that finally we can say women are believed.”