Cosby lawyers ask court to void con­vic­tion, prison sen­tence

The Standard Journal - - ENTERTAINMENT - By Maryclaire Dale

PHILADEL­PHIA — Bill Cosby’s lawyers have asked a Penn­syl­va­nia court to over­turn the ac­tor’s con­vic­tion and three- to 10-year prison sen­tence be­cause of what they call a string of er­rors in his sex as­sault case.

The de­fense mo­tion ar­gued that trial Judge Steven O’Neill erred in declar­ing Cosby a sex­u­ally vi­o­lent preda­tor who must be im­pris­oned to pro­tect the com­mu­nity. Lawyers called the sen­tence more puni­tive than nec­es­sary, given the stan­dard two- to three-year guide­line range for the crime and the fact Cosby is 81 and blind.

They also said the trial ev­i­dence never proved the en­counter with ac­cuser An­drea Con­stand took place in 2004, and not 2003, or that Cosby was ar­rested within the 12-year time limit.

Cosby was ar­rested on Dec. 30, 2015, and was con­victed at a se­cond trial this April. He has been in a state prison near Philadel­phia since the Sept. 25 sen­tenc­ing, when the judge re­fused to let him stay out on $1 mil­lion bail pend­ing ap­peal. Given his fame, wealth and use of drugs to mo­lest the ac­cuser, the judge said, Cosby could re­main a threat to other women.

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