, the disgraced comedian
accused of sexual misconduct
by 60 women
, was released
from a Pennsylvania
on Wednesday, just days after the state Supreme Court
overturned his 2018 conviction for aggravated indecent assault
Cosby, 83, was released from prison after serving more than two years of a ten-year sentence for drugging and molesting a Temple University basketball
coach named Andrea Constand at his suburban Philadelphia
home in 2004. In her victim impact
statement, she said the trial left her "traumatized all over again."
However, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruled on Wednesday that Cosby's conviction in a retrial after the first ended in a hung jury was invalid. The court determined that Montgomery County District Attorney
Kevin Steele, who initiated Cosby's arrest
, was obligated to stand by a promise made by his predecessor not to charge Cosby, even though there is no evidence that promise was ever put in writing.
Bruce Castor, who defended former President Donald Trump
in his second impeachment trial
, was the predecessor who made that promise to Cosby.
Steele issued a statement in which he expressed his displeasure with Wednesday's developments and vowed to continue prosecuting sex crimes
“He was found guilty by a jury and now walks free on a procedural issue that has nothing to do with the facts
of the crime,” he said of Cosby.
“My hope is that this decision will not discourage victims from reporting sexual assaults,” he added. “Prosecutors in my office will continue to follow the evidence wherever and to whomever it leads, because we continue to believe that no one is above the law
— including the rich, famous, and powerful.”
The “Cosby Show” star, who chose to serve the full ten years rather than admitting any remorse for his encounter with Constand, has maintained his innocence. Most of the crimes he's been accused of fell outside the statute of limitations, and his arrest in Constand's case in 2015 occurred just 12 days before that window of opportunity closed.
“Bill Cosby crushed my beautiful, healthy young spirit,” Constand, a former professional basketball player, wrote in her victim impact statement, “he robbed me of my health and vitality, my open nature
, and my trust in myself and others.”
Please return for updates as this is a developing