Day one of Bill Cosby’s sentencing hearing after he was found guilty of drugging in addition to sexually assaulting a woman began on Monday, with the 81-year-old comedian facing up to 30 years in prison.
Cosby arrived at court just after 9:20 a.m. in Norristown, Pennsylvania, to receive his sentencing. He was escorted inside the building on the arm of his lawyer, passing reporters shouting questions, photographers in addition to camera people filming his entrance. Additionally, there was a female protester shouting which has a musical accompaniment about justice being served in addition to to “end rape.”
Cosby appeared to be in an upbeat mood as he walked to the courtroom, smiling, in addition to at one point, he pointed to the crowd. He seemed unfazed by the commotion in addition to did not engage with the media.
In April, Cosby was found guilty on three counts of felony aggravated indecent assault stemming through a 2004 case involving Andrea Constand, a former employee at his alma mater, Temple University. The jury reached the verdict in court during a retrial, though the Cosby Show star still maintains in which he’s innocent.
This kind of was a full house inside the courtroom on Monday for his sentencing. style Janice Dickinson in addition to three different women who accused Cosby of sexual assault sat in a row of seats behind Constand. The women were comforting one another throughout the hearing, sitting together with their arms around each different. One of the women, Chelan Lasha, was emotional upon entering the courtroom in addition to had to wipe away tears.
As for Constand, she appeared to be in not bad spirits as she entered the courtroom, greeting the different women which has a smile. Later, she appeared stoic in addition to poised throughout the court proceedings.
The morning session of the sentencing hearing was devoted to whether Cosby would certainly have to register as a SVP (sexually violent predator). If a convicted sexual predator registers as an SVP, their address, job in addition to travel plans have to be communicated to the state in addition to all the information about their whereabouts is actually made public. The state wanted Cosby’s sentencing to involve registering as an SVP, yet Cosby’s defense argued against This kind of, one reason named because This kind of could impact his ability to visit with his grandchildren.
On Monday, the state called the psychologist who assessed Cosby’s case, Kristen Dudley, to the stand. Based on her assessment — which involved reading transcripts through the trial in addition to mistrial, yet did not include any interviews with Cosby himself — she stated in which Cosby is actually at risk to re-offend, in addition to therefore, should have to register as an SVP. The defense then cross-examined her in addition to called into question whether she took into account his blindness in addition to age when determining his likelihood of committing another assault.
During the cross-examination, Cosby rolled his eyes in addition to smirked on multiple occasions, in addition to his sexual assault accusers noticed in addition to appeared to take offense. In hushed tones, they were heard telling one another, “he’s actually laughing!”
According to CBS News, prosecutors asked judge Steven O’Neill to sentence Cosby to a few to 10 years in prison. However, Cosby’s defense attorney, Joseph Green, argued in which he is actually too old in addition to frail to serve time behind bars, in addition to instead recommended he be placed in a detention or rehabilitation facility.
In May, Constand sat down with Dateline following the once beloved comedian’s guilty verdict in addition to described the night she said she was sexually assaulted by Cosby.
“He had three blue pills in his hand in addition to he put his hand out. ‘I said, ‘What are those?'” she recalled to NBC News reporter Kate Snow. “He said, ‘They’ll help you relax.'”
Constand said upon taking the pills, she started out to slur her words in addition to had trouble walking. in which’s when she said Cosby escorted her to a couch where he sexually assaulted her. “My mind is actually saying, ‘Move your hands, kick, I don’t want This kind of, why is actually This kind of person doing This kind of?'” she said she remembered thinking to herself. “I was limp. I was a limp noodle.”
This kind of case marked the first criminal charges against Cosby after more than 50 women came forward accusing him of drugging in addition to/or sexually assaulting them. The alleged incidents date as far back as 1969, though Cosby has denied all wrongdoing.
Meanwhile, Cosby’s wife, Camille, has stood by her husband in addition to posted a lengthy statement on Facebook in May in his defense. “Someday the truth will prevail, This kind of always does,” she wrote in part.
Here’s more of Camille’s statement:
— Reporting by Darla Murray