According to CBS News, former model Janice Dickinson is the sixth woman to step forward with allegations of sexual assault against Bill Cosby. The first claim was made in January 2005, by Andrea Constand. The former Temple University basketball team staff member asserted that Cosby drugged and raped her at his home. Yet, due to the lack of evidence, criminal charges were not pressed against Cosby. However, in November 2006, Constand brought a civil suit against Cosby and thirteen women were prepared to serve as Jane Doe witnesses. Yet, the matter settled out of court. Other allegations of assault were made in February 2005 by California lawyer Tamara Green (claiming Cosby raped her in the 1970s), and in December 2006 by Barbara Bowman and Beth Ferrier.
So how did the claims become headline news again in 2014? In October, Hannibal Buress performed a stand-up show in which he called Cosby a rapist. The video went viral and made the previously not well-known allegations, common knowledge. This was followed by a Washington Post article by Bowman, and repeated denials of the legitimacy of the allegations by Cosby’s representatives. On November 15th, Cosby made more headlines by shaking his head and remaining silent when asked about the claims during an NPR interview. He proceeded to cancel appearances on talk shows, while Netflix postponed a Cosby stand-up special and NBC canceled an upcoming project featuring the comedian. This culminated with Joan Tarshis coming forward on November 17th and Janice Dickinson on the 18th with further allegations of assault. It is possible as the story develops, other women may come forward or a suit may be filed.
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