Comedian Bill Cosby sentenced to prison for sexual assault

Bill Cosby [Photo credit: CNN]
Bill Cosby [Photo credit: CNN]

Comedian Bill Cosby has been sentenced to three to 10 years in state prison for sexual assault, the BBC is reporting.

Cosby, 81, has also been categorised as a sexually violent predator, meaning he must undergo counselling for life and be listed on the sex offender registry.

The actor declined to make a statement when a judge gave him the opportunity after the judgement was delivered on Tuesday.

The 81-year-old star of ‘The Cosby Show’ was found guilty in April of drugging and sexually assaulting Andrea Constand in 2004 at a retrial in April.

Ms Constand, 30 years his junior, was working at Cosby’s former university when they met. She accused Cosby of incapacitating her with pills before molesting her while she drifted in and out of consciousness.

The comedian claimed the encounter was consensual and has always denied any wrongdoing.

Judge Steven O’Neill has also denied Cosby’s request for bail pending appeal.

After delivering the sentence, Judge O’Neill said: “Mr Cosby you took her beautiful healthy young spirit and crushed it.”

He told Ms Constand he “heard the very clear impact” the assault had on her life.

Ahead of the sentence, the judge designated Cosby a sexually violent predator; despite the defence’s argument that Cosby’s age and blindness mean he is not a threat.

More than 50 women have come forward to publicly accuse Cosby of sexual assault spanning several decades.

Cosby’s conviction on three counts of aggravated indecent assault refers solely to accusations from Ms Constand.

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