After nearly 50 accusations of rape, actor Bill Cosby, 78 is finally going to face criminal charges. Montgomery County, Pennsylvania prosecutors announced on Wednesday morning, Dec.30, 2015 that Cosby will be facing one first-degree sexual assault felony charge in connection to a rape that occurred 12 years ago in January 2004.
Montgomery County Assistant District Attorney Kevin R. Steele announced the charge in a press conference. Officially, the charge is first-degree aggravated indecent assault, according to USA Today that is defined as “the act as penetration without the consent of his victim.”
The victim is former Temple University employee Andrea Constand. Steele explained, “Pills were provided. Wine was provided. The victim was frozen, paralyzed. A person in that condition is not able to give consent to sexual activity.” The assistant DA also said, “The evidence is strong and sufficient to proceed with the charges.”
The rape happened at Cosby’s home in Cheltenham Township in Montgomery County in January 2004. Constand had been working with Temple University’s basketball team and her relationship with Cosby revolved around her work. Twice, Cosby made sexual advances towards Constand before drugging and raping her.
This case would have reached the state of limitations at the end of January. Supposedly, new information uncovered this past summer allowed the case to be reopened. Newly elected District Attorney Risa Vetri Ferman reversed her predecessor’s decision not to press charges.
Constand was the first to accuse Cosby of rape back in 2005, but the prosecutor’s office refused to charge Cosby at the time citing insufficient evidence. Instead, Constand pursued a civil suit against Cosby, the case has been sealed, but some information has been revealed including elements of Cosby’s three-day deposition, where he admitted “he obtained drugs; including Quaaludes, to give to women he sought for sex.”
Cosby has denied any wrongdoing despite the mounting accusation against him; he said at the time that anything relating to Constand was consensual. Cosby will be arraigned on Wednesday afternoon “in front of a magistrate in Elkins Park, Pa., at approximately 4 p.m. ET.”
Constand’s legal team released a statement with her thanking the Montgomery District Attorney’s Office, Country Detectives and Cheltenham Police Department for their “consideration, courtesy and professionalism.”
In the past couple of years, nearly 50 women have come forward saying the actor and former TV dad had drugged and raped them. Some of the cases are or have been in civil litigation only because the statute of limitations has expired. Some the cases date back to the 1960s
Currently, there are seven civil cases pending. There is the possibility of another case criminal case in Los Angeles, Chloe Goins accused Cosby of raping her in 2008 “at the Playboy Mansion…when she was 18.”