Bill Cosby will spend the next three to 10 years in Pennsylvania state prison.
The 81-year-old comedy legend, accused of rape and sexual assault by some 60 women whose allegations span several decades, was convicted of three counts of aggravated indecent assault in April for drugging and molesting one of these women in his home in 2004.
Judge Steven O’Neill handed down Cosby’s sentence today following two days of hearings from both prosecutors, defense attorneys and the woman Cosby violated.
Cosby had previously tried to make this all go away by paying her off to settle her civil suit. But after dozens of women came forward to say #MeToo, prosecutors made the case against him in criminal court, and used his sworn depositions (which admitted Cosby’s penchant for drugging women so he could have sex with them without their consent).
The judge denied Cosby bail, meaning he reported immediately to jail in Montgomery County for processing.
Each of the three felony convictions against Cosby could have brought a maximum of 10 years in prison (or 30 in all), but defenders cut a deal to combine the three felonies into one. However, if Cosby survives his stint in prison, he’ll live out the remainder of his life classified as a “sexually violent predator.” Meaning mandatory counseling and notification of his future neighbors.
Though Cosby remained on house arrest between his April jury conviction and today, he never admitted nor showed remorse for his crimes.
Prosecutors said: “The defendant has never accepted responsibility for his crime, nor has he shown any remorse. Quite the opposite, he tried to silence Ms. Constand with money because he was concerned about his own potential financial harm if news of the assault became public.”
In show business repercussions, the Television Critics Association (TCA) voted to rescind the Career Achievement Award they’d given Cosby in 2002. The Oscars already had expelled Cosby from the film Academy, while the TV Academy removed him from both its website and its TV Hall of Fame, though not rescinding his four Emmys.
Cosby’s star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame also will stay put. For now.
“The Hollywood Walk of Fame is a historical record of entertainment figures past and present. Once installed, the stars become part of the historic fabric of the Walk of Fame, a ‘designated historic cultural landmark,’ and are intended to be permanent. The stars only commemorate the recipient’s professional accomplishments. It is regrettable when the personal lives of inductees do not measure up to public standards and expectations; however, the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce does not remove stars from the Walk of Fame.”