Bill Cosby’s accuser Andrea Constand has surfaced publicly for the first time since Pennsylvania’s highest court ruled to release its infamous convicted sex offender in a startling decision last week.
Constand, a 48-year-old Canadian, was pictured walking her dog in Toronto on Monday, five days after the unexpected release of the disgraced former “America’s father”.
Dressed in jeans, a shirt with rolled up sleeves and a waistcoat – with a face mask pulled down to her chin – Constand looked lost in thought on the walk near her home.
She recently took to social media to call for the release of 83-year-old Cosby on a legal technicality “not only disappointing but worrying” potentially deter victims of sex crimes from seeking justice from their attackers.
While she was only one of many women to bring troubling charges against the former star of “The Cosby Show”, Constand’s case was the only one that led to criminal charges and ultimately a sentence of. three to 10 years in prison for Cosby.
She had long accused the TV star of drugging and then assaulting her in her Pennsylvania home in 2004 when she was a sports administrator at Temple University in Philadelphia, Cosby’s alma mater.
When criminal charges seemed unlikely at first, Constand took civil action against the star, ultimately reaching a settlement of $ 3.5 million.
The problem was that at the time, the local district attorney made a secret deal with Cosby’s camp not to prosecute the fallen star in his case if he complied with what he had done in his case. a deposition for the civil trial of Constand. The prosecutor said the evidence against Cosby was weak and that he at least hoped Constand could land a lucrative settlement.
Cosby accepted the deal. He then testified under oath that he gave Constand pills before he committed a sexual act on her, which he claimed was consensual.
But after news of the damning deposition surfaced years later, the new prosecutor said he was not bound by the previous closed-door deal and tried Cosby in criminal court and obtained a conviction. Constand insisted she had “not been consulted” or informed of the previous immunity deal Cosby received.
Pennsylvania’s highest court then ruled last week that the new prosecutor was bound by his predecessor’s verbal agreement with the accused and quashed Cosby’s conviction, freeing him.
Since then, Cosby has repeatedly declared his innocence, insisting he is the victim of unfair press.
To prove it, he shared part of Constand’s TV interview to show that she knew she was taking “three blue pills” which he said would be her “girlfriends” – cutting the clip at the part where she was. was talking about “screaming inside” as he tried to have sex with her while the pills made her “a soft noodle” that was “in and out of consciousness”.
Five other women – including ex-supermodel Janice Dickinson – testified at the trial that Cosby drugged and assaulted them. Dozens of others have also alleged sexual misconduct, including rape, by the fallen TV star.
In his statement last week, Constand thanked “the women who have stepped forward to tell their stories.
“Despite the end result which resulted from procedural technicality,” she urged “all victims to make their voices heard.”