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Bill Cosby to Hold ‘Town Halls’ on Sexual Assault Following Mistrial

Variety logo Variety 6/22/2017 Joe Otterson

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(Video Provided by Veuer)

Bill Cosby is planning a series of talks about sexual assault in the wake of his own sexual assault court case ending in a mistrial.

“Mr. Cosby wants to get back to work,” his spokesman Andrew Wyatt said on WBRC’s “Good Day Alabama” in Birmingham. “We’re now planning town halls and we’re going to be coming to this city sometime in July … to talk to young people because this is bigger than Bill Cosby.”

“This issue can affect any young person, especially young athletes of today, and they need to know what they’re facing when they’re hanging out and partying, when they’re doing certain things that they shouldn’t be doing,” he continued. “And it also affects married men.”

“Laws are changing. The statute of limitations for victims of sexual assault are being extended. So this is why people need to be educated,” added spokeswoman Ebonee Benson. “A brush against the shoulder, anything at this point, can be considered sexual assault and it’s a good thing to be educated about the laws.”

On June 17, a jury decided that it could not reach a verdict on charges that Cosby drugged and molested a woman at his home outside Philadelphia in early 2004. Montgomery County District Attorney Kevin Steele immediately announced he would retry the case against the legendary entertainer, and Judge Steven O’Neill said the trial would be within the next three or four months.

“We will evaluate and review our case. We will take a hard look at everything involved and then we will retry it,” Steele said at a news conference. He confirmed that the alleged victim, Andrea Constand, would testify again at the new trial. “She’s entitled to a verdict in this case,” said Steele.  “We will press forward to try to get that done, to get justice done.”

Cosby was charged with three counts of aggravated indecent assault, all focusing on the alleged assault of Constand, 44, who was then manager of the women’s basketball team at Temple University, where Cosby was a member of the board of trustees. The criminal complaint was filed in December 2015,  just days before Pennsylvania’s 12-year statute of limitations was due to expire.  Constand is just one of dozens of women who have accused Cosby of giving them pills and then sexually assaulting them  but she is the only woman whose alleged assault became the focus of criminal charges.

Related slideshow: The rise and fall of Bill Cosby (via Photo Services): Bill Cosby: From icon to accused


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