It will be the first criminal case against Cosby over his conduct with women, which has received new scrutiny in the past year. That could change if he is convicted in a criminal case.
“Reopening this case was not a question”. And Pressley believes the charges were part of a political move by Steele.
Another of the comedian’s accusers, Beth Ferrier, told People magazine on Thursday that the charges against Cosby were “the moment we’ve all been hoping for”.
He was released on $1 million (£678,000) bail. “His current health status doesn’t have anything to do with the defense for this unsubstantiated charge”, she said.
Bill Cosby is pictured in a December 30, 2015 booking photo released by the Cheltenham Township Police Department.
Cosby’s lawyer declined to comment on the case before the announcement. Mr. Cosby’s own words in a deposition in a civil suit brought by Ms. Constand d*** him; he acknowledged securing drugs with the aim of giving them to young women he wanted to have s** with. Last summer, Pennsylvania District attorney Attorney Kevin Steele and his office confirmed they were reassessing the case for new information.
Cosby, 78, tweeted the message to his 4.1million followers on Thursday, just a day after he appeared in court. The appeals court called it overkill – in legal terms, more prejudicial than probative. “We’re not thinking of a person who may have committed one sexual assault, but a person who may have committed 50”. Numerous alleged incidents occurred decades ago and the statute of limitations for prosecuting them expired long ago.
Cosby’s civil lawyers have appealed the unsealing, and his criminal attorneys will no doubt fight to keep them out of the trial, perhaps by arguing that Cosby spoke only after being assured by prosecutors he would not be charged with a crime.
Some victims put off going to police because they fear family, friends or law enforcement will blame or judge them for what happened, said Monika Johnson Hostler, president of the National Alliance to End Sexual Violence.
Cosby has since been accused by dozens of women of sexual misconduct.
But he lost to Mr Steele in a hotly contested race in which the Cosby case played a central role. Steele’s win was widely read as a sign that Cosby could soon be charged. “How can we possibly trust him?”
(David Swanson/The Philadelphia Inquirer via AP).
Filing the case under the wire could raise questions over whether the prosecutor’s judgment had been hurried or compromised.
“The evidence is strong and sufficient to proceed at this point”, he added.
“He’s 78 years old and that he’s being charged as a 78-year-old blind man 12 years after an alleged incident”, Pressley said.