Lesbian who brought Bill Cosby to trial for assault speaks out for the first time
One of the women who accused Bill Cosby and successfully brought him to trial has spoken out about the case for the first time in 13 years.
Andrea Constand, a former Temple University employee, accused the comedian of an assault that dated back to 2004.
Constand’s case was the only one still eligible to bring to trial, as the statute of limitations had expired on many of the other allegations brought by over 40 women.
In April, Cosby was found guilty of three counts of aggravated indecent assault against Constand following a mistrial in 2017.
On Friday’s episode of Dateline entitled “Bringing Down Bill Cosby: Andrea Constand Speaks,” Constand gave her first interview regarding the assault and the subsequent trials.
The 45-year-old former basketball player opened up about why she had waited to publicly accuse the disgraced comedian and entertainer.
She said: “I didn’t think anybody would believe me. It was Bill Cosby. It was Dr. Huxtable.”
During the trial, Constand was grilled and “victim shamed” by Cosby’s lawyers regarding her sexuality, as well as being accused of only accusing Cosby for financial gain.
Constand hit back at the allegations, stating: “This has never been about money. This has been about justice. I wasn’t talking money. I was talking police and justice.”
She then praised the wider Me Too movement, saying: “I’m just proud of everything that has unfolded in the past couple of years, especially in the past year, because we will hold people accountable, we will teach consent.”
The show featured interviews with four other women who testified during the April trial, Janice Baker-Kinney, Lise-Lotte Lublin, Heidi Thomas and Chelan Lasha.
Constand said later in the interview that while she was the one to directly bring Cosby to trial, bringing the entertainer to justice was a collective effort.
“I’m not alone. It’s a collective consciousness. And so I would rather say we brought down Bill Cosby, but I just had the shoes on,” she said.
In previously seen court documents, it was revealed that Cosby believed the sexual contact to be consensual.
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Cosby said he considered their sexual contact to be consensual, saying: “I think that I’m a pretty decent reader of people and their emotions in these romantic sexual things, whatever you want to call them.”
However, Constand’s lawyer, Dolores Troiani, challenged this, writing: “Despite his talent for interpreting female reactions to him, he did not realize plaintiff was gay until the police told him.”
Cosby now faces up to 30 years in prison, in addition to a hefty fine for each charge. Cosby’s lawyers are reportedly appealing the decision.
The 80-year-old is due to be sentenced in September.