The above video shows Bill Cosby arriving at court after being charged with sexual assault from 2004. According to CNN:
Bill Cosby has been charged with sexual assault in relation to a 2004 accusation in Montgomery County, Pennsylvania.
Cosby, whose legacy as a comedian has been tarnished by multiple accusations of sexual assault, faces one felony charge of aggravated indecent assault.
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This is the first criminal charge levied against Cosby since the allegations first arose. Cosby has steadfastly denied any wrongdoing.
After looking at all the evidence in the 2004 allegations, prosecutors decided to charge Cosby “because it was the right thing to do,” Montgomery County prosecutor Kevin Steele said.
CNN has reached out to Cosby’s lawyers for comment.
The district attorney did not name the victim, but the accusations he announced parallel the allegations made by former Temple University employee Andrea Constand. She has said Cosby drugged and fondled her in January 2004.
The criminal complaint and Constand’s attorney, Dolores Troiani, confirmed that the criminal charges relate to Constand’s case.
She was the first person to publicly allege sexual assault by Cosby. Prosecutors declined to file charges at that time, citing insufficient evidence.
The criminal investigation into Cosby in Montgomery County was reopened in July after new evidence came to light, Steele said.
The new evidence was court documents related to a civil suit that Constand filed against Cosby after prosecutors declined to seek charges against the comedian.
Constand settled the civil case against Cosby in 2006.
This past July — nine years after the civil case was settled — a judge decided to unseal Cosby’s deposition in that case in response to a motion by the media.
In it, Cosby admits he had sexual relationships with at least five women outside his marriage, gave prescription sedatives to women he wanted to have sex with and tried to hide affairs from his wife.
When the deposition was released and “we learned about allegations from other victims under similar circumstances, reopening this case was not a question,” Steele said. “Rather, reopening this case was our duty as law enforcement officers with a sworn obligation to uphold our constitutions and to uphold the law.”
Prosecutors re-examined the original investigation in light of the new documents, re-interviewed some witnesses and decided to pursue the criminal charge.
“The evidence shows Mr. Cosby established a relationship with the victim after meeting her through her work associated with Temple University’s women’s basketball program,” Steele said.
Constand considered Cosby a friend and mentor, but on two occasions rejected advances by Cosby, he said.
“On the evening in question, Mr. Cosby urged her to take pills that he provided to her, and to drink wine, the effect of which rendered her unable to move or respond to his advances, and he committed aggravated indecent assault upon her,” Steele said.
Pennsylvania law has a 12-year statute of limitations for sexual assault cases, a window that closes early next year.
Some unsealed documents from the civil suit revealed that Cosby has admitted to getting prescription Quaaludes to give to women he wanted to have sex with.
Asked whether investigators believe Cosby used Quaaludes in the 2004 case for which he is being charged, Steele said that pills were provided.
“There’s inconsistencies on [what pills they were]. There was also wine provided,” the prosecutor said. He said the woman has said she was “frozen, paralyzed, unable to move,” so she was therefore unable to consent to sexual activity.
What do you think about all of this?
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