The Montgomery County, Pa., District Attorney's Office announced Wednesday that Bill Cosby, who has been accused by more than 50 women of sexual assault, has been charged with aggravated indecent assault.
The criminal charge stems from a 2004 accusation by Andrea Constand, in which she alleged that she was drugged and sexually assaulted by Cosby when she was working at Temple University. “The evidence is strong and sufficient to proceed,” Kevin Steele, Montgomery County’s district attorney-elect, told reporters Wednesday.
Constand's accusation—of first being drugged and then assaulted—echoes the dozens of women who have come forward with their own stories. Her case was reopened thanks, in part, to the more than 50 other women who came forward with similar accusations over the past year.
The Montgomery County District Attorney's Office confirmed that an arrest warrant has been issued for the 78-year-old comedian. The district attorney at the time, Bruce Castor, declined to press charges against Cosby in 2005.
Norristown's Times Herald notes that this is the first criminal case in which Cosby has been charged with sexual assault, as the statutes of limitations to press charges in most of the dozens of other cases have expired.
UPDATE, 3:49 p.m.: Bill Cosby arrived at court in Elkins Park Wednesday afternoon, ABC News reports. He handed over his passport but did not enter a plea.
The comedian was then taken to the Cheltenham Police Department to be processed and have his mugshot taken.
His next court date is Jan. 14. His bail is set at $1 million.
UPDATE, 6:46 p.m.: "Make no mistake: We intend to mount a vigorous defense against this unjustified charge, and we expect that Mr. Cosby will be exonerated by a court of law," Monique Pressley, his attorney, said in a statement.
Bad at filling out bios seeks same.