Update 5:30 pm
According Deadline, Bill Cosby To Get Less Than Three Years Behind Bars For 2004 Rape, Says Judge
“Despite heartfelt pleas in victims impact statements and sharp words from lawyers on both sides, Bill Cosby will see the inside of a prison cell for the 2004 rape of Andrea Constand for less than three years, the judge in the Cosby criminal case told a Pennsylvania courtroom Monday.”
Cosby, Constand, the lawyers and O’Neill are expected back in court at 9 AM ET Tuesday for a the sexually violent predator ruling and eventually final sentencing.
After four years, the conviction has reached its first phase on Monday. Judge Steven O’Neill could sentence Cosby to as much as 30 years in prison or send him home on probation.
Bill Cosby was scheduled on Monday to be sentenced for his sexual assault conviction, but not before his confirmed and alleged victims literally have their say. The woman who a jury found was drugged and groped by the disgraced comedian was expected to lead a group of women making their “victim impact statements” to Cosby ahead of his sentencing, which was set to last two days.
Cosby arrived at the courthouse in Norristown, Pennsylvania, a suburb of Philadelphia, with his legal team in tow. His main accuser, Andrea Constand, had already arrived, as well as other accusers, including former supermodel Janice Dickinson.
A small group of protesters had assembled outside the courthouse in a scene that was similar to the retrial, which ended in April and followed the original trial that ended in a mistrial last year.
Regardless of the sentencing – Cosby could either be sentenced to a maximum 30 years and be led out of the courtroom in handcuffs or he could be sentenced to probation – the case is likely bound to continue as defense attorneys were expected to announce an immediate appeal.
Cosby’s fall from grace has been especially notable because he built his career on a clean, family-friendly image that was shredded when he was indicted and arrested on Constand’s accusation that had gone all but ignored until Montgomery County District Attorney Kevin Steele won his election and vowed to finish the job his predecessor never started.
The comedian’s wife filed an ethics complaint with the state judicial board last week claiming Judge Steven O’Neill was biased, but the accusation wasn’t expected to affect the sentencing.
Below are some of the scenes from Cosby’s sentencing hearing. The photos and videos will be updated as they become available.