Bill Cosby, 81 years old, will spend the next 3 to 10 years behind bars after being found guilty of three counts of felony aggravated indecent assault in April in one of the most widely publicized trials in modern history.
The sentence could have been much stiffer since each count carried a maximum of 10 years in prison. Cosby’s defense team attempted to play upon the disgraced actor’s advanced age in order to secure a lesser sentence but those whom he victimized argued that Cosby’s age should not play a factor in sentencing.
“I wasn’t sure what had actually happened but the pain spoke volumes,” Constand said in an impact statement to the court. “The shame was overwhelming. Self-doubt and confusion kept me from turning to my family or friends as I normally did. I felt completely alone, unable to trust anyone, including myself.”
Cosby’s sentence comes after a lengthy trial that resulted in one mistrial and an eventual guilty verdict, over accusations from former Temple University employee Constand. He was found to have drugged and sexually assaulted Constand at his suburban Philadelphia home in 2004. Since then, multiple women have come forward against “The Cosby Show” star with similar allegations of assault. More than 60 women have accused him of sexual misconduct, but only Constand’s report led to criminal charges. Cosby has been on house arrest since his conviction in April.
After delivering the sentence, Judge O’Neill said: “Mr Cosby you took her beautiful healthy young spirit and crushed it.”
He told Ms Constand he “heard the very clear impact” the assault had on her life.
Ahead of the sentence, the judge designated Cosby a sexually violent predator, despite the defence’s argument that Cosby’s age and blindness mean he is not a threat.
Given the number of women who accused him of assault and sex abuse, Cosby received a lighter sentence than he deserved.
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