When you think of Bill Cosby today do you think of a family friendly comedian or a serial sexual abuser? With his reputation tarnished it is his legal battles and the stripping of his accolades and prestigious appointments by institutions that once honoured him that consumes media attention.
From the startling front cover of New York magazine where photos of his 35 victims were pictured, to the removal of his honourary degrees from Marquette University and Fordham University, his tattered reputation is in free-fall. He was forced to resign from the Board of Trustees of Temple University and his ties to the University of Massachusetts, where he earned a Master’s and Doctoral degree, have been cut-off.
The United States Navy stripped him of his honourary designation as Chief Petty Officer and there has been significant pressure to remove his Star on the Hollywood Walk of Stars, and force him to relinquish his Presidential Medal of Honour. His bronze bust at Disney World Orlando is no longer on display.
This week his lawyer’s application in Los Angeles Superior Court to dismiss alleged victim Judy Huth’s case on the basis of a technicality was denied by Judge Craig Karlan who determined that mistakes made by Ms. Huth’s previous counsel were not so serious that her claim should be thrown out.
Her former lawyer, Marc Strecker, admitted that he overlooked a section of the legal code that barred the naming of an alleged sexual offender in claims brought based on historical sexual abuse.
Mr. Cosby’s lawyer, Martin Stringer, argued that by identifying his client in the claim, he could not receive a fair trial and that the identification caused a tsunami of other complainants to come forward. Singer also attempted to persuade Judge Karlan that certain actions of Mr. Strecker were cause for dismissal of the claim, including allegations that Mr. Strecker attempted to extort $250,000 from Mr,. Cosby before the claim was filed, and attempted to sell Ms. Huth’s story to the National Enquirer ten years ago.
Mr. Cosby is scheduled to be deposed, an event that will likely see media outlets scrambling for “leaks” and tips on his admissions during his under oath questioning.
Why Bill Cosby would put himself through the indignity of these civil cases is astounding considering his financial ability to make it all go away. I assume his many victims want their day in court, to be vindicated from Cosby’s bold-faced denials, despite the corroboration of a phalanx of additional victims.
Lawdiva aka Georgialee Lang