Bill Cosby sentenced to prison for sex assault

'America's Dad' Cosby to hear if he will face jail

Facing the possibility of prison at 81, Bill Cosby arrived at a suburban Philadelphia courthouse Tuesday for a continuation of his sentencing hearing for drugging and sexually assaulting a Canadian woman over a decade ago in the first celebrity trial of the #MeToo era.

Cosby's convictions stem from the assault of Andrea Constand, a former Temple University basketball coach whom he is said to have drugged and molested in 2004 inside his Philadelphia home.

Ms Constand, now 45, said she has suffered with anxiety and self-doubt for years in a statement submitted to the court. He will now have to have counseling every month for the rest of his life, and report to authorities every quarter.

Cosby showed no visible reaction to the sentence, which was close to the maximum that could be imposed.

Another Cosby accuser in the courtroom, Lili Bernard, said, "Maybe this will send a message to other powerful perpetrators that they will be caught and punished".

American comedian and actor Bill Cosby was sentenced Tuesday to three to 10 years in prison for sex crimes.

The disgraced comedian was sentenced to serve 3 to 10 years in a state prison earlier in the day and many are praising the judge's decision.

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Montgomery County Court of Common Pleas Judge Steven O'Neill also chose to designateCosby a "sexually violent predator" under Pennsylvania law. "The day has come, the time has come".

His name will appear on a sex-offender registry sent to neighbours, schools and victims.

Cosby's lawyers asked for house arrest, saying Cosby - who is legally blind - is too old and helpless to do time in prison.

As Vox points out, roughly 60 women have shared stories of alleged sexual assault, ranging from groping to forced kissing to rape, at Cosby's hands. "You heard me, the jury heard me and Mr. Cosby heard me".

Judge Steven O'Neill also ruled Cosby as a "sexually violent predator".

"Bill Cosby took my attractive, healthy young spirit and crushed it". "Dr. Cosby has been one of the greatest civil rights leaders in the United States for over the last 50 years". A renowned TV star and once known for breaking racial barriers have now been termed as a sexually violent predator by the Montgomery Country court.

Attorneys for Cosby sought Cosby's bail pending possible appeals, but that request was denied.

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A member of the board said Cosby has a mental disorder that involves urges toward nonconsenting women.

Days before the sentencing, Cosby's lawyers wanted O'Neill to step down from the case because of what Cosby's team called a long-ago grudge with a pretrial witness.

Cosby's first trial in 2017 ended in a mistrial when jurors could not reach a verdict.

He added: 'As she [Constand] said, Mr. Cosby, you took her attractive, healthy young spirit and crushed it'.

The judge said he recognized the defendant's age and blindness, but said they could not be the determining factors.

In her victim statement, Andrea wrote, "Bill Cosby took my lovely, healthy young spirit and crushed it".

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