Cosby back in court for sentencing


In 2004, He was convicted of drugging and molesting a woman at his suburban Philadelphia home.

The final decision rests with Judge Steven O'Neill, who will impose the sentence after a hearing that could stretch across two days in Norristown, a down-at-heel town just outside Philadelphia.

After he was found guilty in April, prosecutors asked for Cosby to be incarcerated immediately, but the judge released him on $1 million bail and ordered him to stay his home until the sentencing. Over several decades, he has been accused of assaulting over 60 women.

Constand, who had gotten to know Cosby when she was managing the women's basketball team at Temple University, testified that the TV star gave her three blue pills, which caused her to pass out.

He faces a maximum of 10 years in prison on each charge, but state guidelines recommend a sentence of about one to four years.

All of the women relayed similar stories to Constand's - that Cosby would offer to be their mentor before plying them with alcohol and drugs before sexually assaulting them.

His trial is being heralded as the first major celebrity trial of the #MeToo era.

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Lublin said Cosby assaulted her in 1989 while Lasha said she was assaulted in 1986 when she was an aspiring actress. According to RAINN, the population reporting the second-highest rate of rape and assault is prisoners, with 80,600 people victimized each year while incarcerated.

Bill Cosby's sentencing hearing began Monday with a debate over a state law that could allow the 81-year-old comedian to be branded a "sexually violent predator" - a scarlet letter that would make him subject to mandatory lifetime counseling and community notification of his whereabouts. However, a smaller jail stint, house arrest and probation are also on the table for the embattled former comedian.

Observers of black pop culture say the rise of social media and black feminist voices has contributed to a generation that is more likely to see Cosby as a victimizer, not a victim.

O'Neill has refused to allow additional Cosby accusers to give statements at his sentencing, although it is not clear if the five others who testified at trial will in fact appear.

The jury of seven men and five women deliberated a little over 12 hours before reaching a unanimous verdict in the case. In court in April, moments after his conviction, Cosby called Steele an expletive and said he was "sick of him".

Cosby and his wife, Camille, have spent much of the past four decades living on their secluded, wooded estate along the Deerfield River in Shelburne Falls in western MA.