Comedian, Bill Cosby Facing Time in Prison

Isabella Terzoli, Staff Writer

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William Henry Cosby Jr. is an American stand-up comedian, actor, musician, author and convicted sex offender. His career in stand-up comedy began in San Francisco.

Cosby, aged 80, was convicted on Thursday, April 26, of three counts of sexual assault in the first celebrity trial of the #MeToo era.

A lawsuit filed by Andrea Constand in 2005 alleged that Cosby drugged and sexually assaulted her at his mansion in Elkins Park, Pa., the year before. The verdict came a year after Cosby’s previous trial ended in a mistrial, as a different panel of jurors said they were deadlocked and could not unanimously agree on a verdict. This jury began deliberating Wednesday around 11 a.m., and worked for more than 14 hours and over two days to reach the verdict. At the retrial, five other Cosby accusers testified as “prior bad acts” witnesses and said that Cosby had drugged and assaulted them decades ago.

Moments after the guilty verdict was read, Cosby lashed out at Steele calling him an “a******” after the prosecution suggested that Cosby should be jailed immediately for fear of him fleeing the country. Cosby denied having access to an airplane and lashed out at the DA again: “I’m sick of him!” At age 80, Cosby could end up seeing his final years through the bars of a prison cell. Cosby was convicted on three charges — aggravated indecent assault, penetration with lack of consent, and penetration while unconscious — each of which could land him with up to a 10-year prison sentence.

The deposition was sealed, but the investigation was reopened in July 2015 after a judge revealed portions of the document on the request of the Associated Press. Cosby was arrested later that year and charged with three counts of sexual assault against Constand, but a judge declared a mistrial in June.

District Attorney Kevin R. Steele of  Pennsylvania’s Montgomery County vowed to have Cosby back in court. Less than a year later, the retrial began on April 9 and included testimony from five other women who said they were abused in similar ways: drugging that led to sexual assaults. The criminal charges against Cosby involved only Constand’s allegations, however.

“I think putting Cosby in jail would send a message to people,” Says 8th grader Karina Doughty.

Based on his conviction this week on three assault charges, comedian and TV star Bill Cosby could be sentenced to 30 years in prison.

 

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