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Bill Cosby was released from prison Wednesday after the Pennsylvania Supreme Court overturned his conviction for sexual assault, a dramatic reversal in one of the first high-profile criminal trials of the MeToo era. Cosby of sexual assault and misconduct, statutes of limitations in their cases makes further prosecutions unlikely. Cosby should not have been charged in the case. Cosby, 83, returned to his home in suburban Philadelphia on Wednesday afternoon where, looking frail and walking slowly, he was helped inside by his lawyer and a spokesman.
The accusations and eventual conviction of Mr. The case against Mr. Cosby began with his arrest in on charges that he had drugged and sexually assaulted a woman at his home in the Philadelphia suburbs 11 years earlier. In Aprilthe jury convicted Mr. Cosby of three counts of aggravated indecent assault against Andrea Constandto whom Mr. Cosby had been a mentor and who was at the time a Temple University employee.
In a statement issued with her lawyers, Ms. Cosby would not face charges, which paved the way for Mr. Cosby to testify in a civil trial, meant that he should not have been charged in the case.
It was a 6-to-1 ruling, with two of the judges in the majority dissenting on the remedy, which barred a retrial. The Pennsylvania Supreme Court, which overturned Mr. Castor Jr. The court also barred a retrial.
Read the full opinion. The case began inwhen Mr. Cosby was investigated in the case of Ms. Constand, and a former district attorney of Montgomery County said that he had given Mr. Cosby his assurance that he would not be charged in the case.
The former district attorney, Bruce L. He later testified that he had given Mr. Cosby the assurance to encourage him to testify in a subsequent civil case brought by Ms. A civil suit she filed against Mr. In that testimony, Mr. Cosby acknowledged giving quaaludes to women he was pursuing for sex — evidence that played a key part in his trial after Mr. Cosby in December That was just days before the year statute of limitations expired in the case, and it came amid a of new allegations from women who brought similar accusations of drugging and sexual assault against Mr.
I have always maintained my innocence. Castor, who this year served as a lawyer for President Donald J. Brian W. Perry, one of the lawyers representing Mr. The Montgomery County district attorney, Kevin R. Steele said in a statement. Patricia Steuer, 65, who accused Mr. Cosby of drugging and assaulting her in andsaid that she had been preparing herself for the possibility that Mr. Steuer, who said she found out about the decision on Facebook. This is not justice. Others expressed support for Mr. Phylicia Rashad, who appeared as Mr.
My post was in no way intended to be insensitive to their truth. The decision undoes a verdict that several women who said that they had been assaulted and raped by Mr. Cosby had praised at the time as a measure of justice that had been long in coming.
In a victim impact statement filed with the court inMs. Constand had said of Mr. And Janice Dickinson, a former model who had told the court that Mr. The issue of whether the trial court had improperly allowed additional women to testify was not considered because the panel ruled that Mr.
Cosby had relied to his detriment on Mr. In a dissent, Justice Thomas G. Saylor disagreed that a statement Mr. Castor made in a news release represented an unconditional promise that bound his successor not to prosecute. Its overturning undid what many women had seen as an early success of the MeToo movement, a ruling which had been praised at the time as a that the s of female accusers were being afforded greater weight and credibility.
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