Montgomery County DA Charges Cosby With Felony Sexual Assault

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December 30, 2015 9:52 a.m.

This post was updated at 10:42 a.m. ET

The Montgomery, Pennsylvania District Attorney’s office on Wednesday charged Bill Cosby with aggravated indecent assault—a felony—for sexually abusing a woman at his home in Cheltenham Township. These are the first criminal charges brought against the comedian.

In a press conference, First Assistant District Attorney Kevin Steele said that Cosby urged the victim, former Temple University employee Andrea Constand, to take pills and drink wine, rendering her “unable to move or to respond.” He then “committed aggravated indecent assault upon her,” digitally penetrating her while she was unconscious.

“A person in that state cannot give consent,” Steele said.

District Attorney Risa Vetri Furman reopened the case, which was closed by her predecessor, after new testimony and allegations from other women who have accused Cosby of sexual assault were unsealed.

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“Reopening this case was not a question,” Steele said in the press conference. “Rather, it was our duty.”

Cosby will be arraigned in court at around 4 p.m. Wednesday.

According to Steele, the case will focus only on Constand’s case. Steele said she has agreed to cooperate with the case going forward.

Forty-six women have accused the comedian of sexual assault. Earlier this month, Cosby, who maintains that the incidents were all consensual, sued seven of them for defaming his character.

As the Associated Press reported, many of the alleged assaults date back decades, exceeding the statue of limitations for bringing charges. But the law in Pennsylvania allows prosecutors up to 12 years to bring charges for certain sex crimes.

Correction: The original version of this post misidentified the jurisdiction as Montgomery, Alabama. The case is actually in Montgomery County, Pennsylvania, near Philadelphia. We regret the error.

The full affidavit is posted below.

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