Lili Bernard, an actor who worked with Bill Cosby and was one of his accusers broke down after the verdict came in: guilty. Shortly before 2 p.m., a Pennsylvania jury found Cosby, 80, guilty of three counts of aggravated indecent assault. The once revered and now deleterious actor could die in prison. He’ll be sentenced in the next two to three months, prosecutors said, and is facing up to 30 years.
After nearly collapsing, overcome with emotion walking out of the courtroom, Bernard powered though the emotions to speak to reports on the courthouse steps, her voice quaking but strong.
“I feel like I’m dreaming. Can you pinch me? I feel like I’m dreaming. I feel like my faith in humanity is restored. This is the victory not just for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, Not just for the victim in the case Andrea Constand, not just for the 62 of us publicly known survivors of Bill Cosby’s drugs-facilitated sexual crimes, but it’s also a victory for all sexual assault survivors, female and male. It’s a victory for Womanhood. I thank the jury so much for positioning themselves on the right side of history,” she said even as reports were firing questions at her.
Cosby was charged in 2015 with three counts of aggravated indecent assault in Montgomery County which resulted in a dismissal when the jury hung. A retrial moved forward on the allegations made by former Temple University staffer Andrea Constand that Cosby sexually assaulted her in 2004.
Free on $1 million bail, “Prosecutors pushed the judge to take Cosby immediately into custody saying Cosby has a private plane and can fly anyplace in the world,” tweeted journalist Bobby Allen.
And moments later, attorney Gloria Allred stood with Cosby accusers saying she is “the happiest I have been.”