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Bill Cosby Found Guilty of Sexual Assault!

Bill Cosby Found Guilty of Sexual Assault!

Bill Cosby, who once embodied the idealized American father on a wildly popular sitcom, was convicted of sexual assault on Thursday in a high-stakes retrial after a half-dozen women testified that the famed comedian drugged and assaulted them.

The jury found Cosby guilty on all three counts on Thursday afternoon, drawing an emotional reaction from his accusers. Cosby remains free on bail until sentencing.

Upon reading of the first guilty verdict several of Cosby’s alleged prior victims sobbed and shook with joy. Cosby’s head was bent slightly, eyes shut.

Cosby, who has faced dozens of sexual misconduct allegations spanning decades, was charged with three counts aggravated indecent assault against one woman, Andrea Constand, 45, who claimed that Cosby drugged and sexually assaulted her in his home in January 2004. Cosby’s first trial ended in a mistrial in June.

Constand maintained her composure as the verdict was read.

Cosby lashed out at the prosecution when discussing whether to revoke his bail.

Prosecutor Kevin Steele said Cosby had a plane and noted his wealth in giving concerns over his bail.

“He doesn’t have a plane, you asshole! I’m sick of it, you asshole!” he exclaimed.

Meanwhile, the prosecutor argued with the judge.

Montgomery County Court of Common Pleas Judge Steven O’Neill said because of Cosby’s “age and his medical condition, I am not going to simply lock him up.” Cosby has to surrender his passport and must remain in his nearby home, the judge said.

Lili Bernard, an accuser who once appeared as a guest on “The Cosby Show,” let out a wail as the verdict was read. She began to cry and court personnel had to escort her from the courtroom.

“I feel like my faith in humanity is restored,” she told reporters through tears in front of the courthouse.

Janice Baker-Kinney, who testified that Cosby gave her Quaaludes and sexually assaulted her, told MSNBC after the verdict that “the relief is overwhelming.”

“I’m shaking with relief and I can’t stop sobbing,” she said.

Attorney Gloria Allred, who represents several of Cosby’s accusers, praised the verdict while alleged victims stood behind her shoulder to shoulder, their arms around each other.

“I truly hope that his long list of victims will now be able to find some kind of peace,” she told reporters.

The decision came Thursday afternoon after a second day of deliberations in which the judge read back testimony of the defense’s star witness, who testified that Cosby’s main accuser once said she could frame a “high-profile person.”

The jury was also read back Cosby’s deposition testimony from 2005, where the comedian admitted to giving a woman Quaaludes in order to have sex with her.

Cosby, 80, faces a maximum sentence of 10 years and a fine of up to $25,000 on each count.

The verdict was a victory for the #MeToo movement, which has exposed sexual harassment and misconduct in entertainment, media, politics and beyond.

Cosby, who has repeatedly denied all the allegations against him, has said the sexual encounter with Constand was consensual.

A few hours after deliberations began Wednesday, the jury returned to the courtroom to ask, “What is the legal definition of consent?”

But O’Neill said that he couldn’t give jurors a legal definition, telling them that was something they would have to answer on their own, using their own “common sense.”

The verdict marked a dramatic culmination of an 18-year case that spanned two criminal trials and multiple police investigations.

Credit: NBC

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April 26th, 2018

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