Those who have been closely following the Bill Cosby story know that earlier this week, a turning point may have been reached when a federal judge decided to unseal documents containing an admission that could possibly lead to criminal charges for the actor-comedian. The documents contained the record of a deposition from a civil suit from 2005 in which Cosby reportedly admitted that he obtained a sedative medication known as Quaaludes so that he could give the drug to women with whom he wanted to have sex.
The case for which the deposition was conducted was a civil suit, and no charges ever came of it. Cosby has been accused of sexual assault by over a dozen women, though he denies the allegations and has been working with his attorney to get cases thrown out of court. Many of these accusations have come out over the last year, though some go back decades. This is also why he has been able to avoid charges.
The federal judge who unsealed the documents containing the deposition record reportedly did so upon the request of the Associated Press. The basis for the decision was that the issue was one of significant public interest, given the disparity between Cosby’s public image and the accusations against him.
As a result of the recent revelation, Cosby may be facing possible criminal charges. One possibility, according to a prosecutor who managed a 2005 investigation against Cosby, is that perjury charges could be pursued, which could result in up to seven years in prison. In addition, Cosby is not out of the woods yet in terms of sexual assault charges. We’ll look at this point in our next post.
Nbcnews.com, “Judge Explains Why He Unsealed Bill Cosby Court Documents,” Andrew Blankstein, Tom Winter, Daniel Arkin, July 7, 2015.
Msnbc.com, “Former Bill Cosby prosecutor: Deposition could support new charges,” Ari Melber, July 7, 2015.
NPR, “LAPD Says It's Investigating Bill Cosby Over Sexual Assault Allegations,” July 7, 2015.