Judge indicates Bill Cosby likely to get less than 3 years in jail for sexual assault conviction
After many survivors shared heartfelt testimonies, over 50 accusations, and sharp arguments from lawyers, the judge in Bill Cosby’s sexual assault case indicated that the aging actor is most likely to see less than 3 years in jail for the rape of Andrea Constand.
Bill Cosby, a household name who’s been on TV since the 1980s, is the first celebrity to be convicted of sexual assault since the #MeToo movement started. Although he has been accused by over 50 women, the 2004 rape of Andrea Constand is the only accusation that has resulted in a conviction.
Yesterday, Constand spoke at the hearing, “Your honor, I have testified. I have given you my victim impact statement. The jury heard me. Mr. Cosby heard me. All I am asking for is justice as the court sees fit.” According to the Guardian, Constand testified that Cosby drugged her with three pills and that she awoke to him penetrating her.
During Monday’s hearing, a psychologist reasoned that due to the piling accusations against Cosby, it is safer to designate him as a “sexually violent predator” as he might commit another crime.
Due to Cosby’s history of sexual violence, prosecutors asked he be given a maximum prison sentence between five and ten years and be charged a $25,000 fine.
However, Cosby’s lawyers rejected both the designation as a “sexually violent predator” and the prosecutors’ demand for a maximum prison sentence, citing that it would be excessively punitive due to Cosby’s blindness and old age. Instead, they asked for a house arrest sentence.
Cosby’s initial 2017 hearing on the same case ended in a mistrial. In April, he was found guilty on three counts of sexual assault that together would have carried a maximum sentence of 30 years behind bars. However, Steven O’Neill, the Montgomery County Court of Common Pleas Judge stated that the counts would be merged into one, and that Cosby is likely looking at a 22-36 month sentence.
The judge will give Cosby a final prison sentence on Tuesday.