Bill Cosby has been hit with a lawsuit from five women who claimed that he sexually assaulted them while they worked on the set of The Cosby Show. The five women, Cindra Ladd, Lili Bernard, Eden Tirl, Jewel Gittens, and Jennifer Thompson, are alleging that Cosby took advantage of them multiple times from 1969 to 1992. The disgraced comedian is accused of assault, battery, false imprisonment, and infliction of emotional distress, CNN reported.
The lawsuit read:
Each plaintiff was sexually assaulted and battered by defendant Bill Cosby in the same or similar manner when he used his power, fame, and prestige, including the power, fame and prestige given to him by [the] defendants … to misuse his enormous power in such a nefarious, horrific way. Now, these five Plaintiffs have come forward to stand up for themselves and others, after they were sexually abused and assaulted by Bill Cosby.
Of course, Cosby denied the allegations in a statement through his spokesperson Andrew Wyatt.
In the lawsuit, Bernard, who played Mrs. Minifield on the show, claimed that Cosby drugged and sexually assaulted her multiple times from 1990 to 1991. She claimed that the assaults happened in Nevada and New Jersey in 1990 and in New York in 1991. She said at one point during the multiple assaults, she woke up and Cosby smothered her with a pillow. Bernard said that when she told Cosby that she would go to the police, he threw her down a flight of stairs. She decided not to go to the police out of “fear for her life.”
Ladd has accused Cosby of drugging and raping her in 1969. Tirl is accusing Cosby of inappropriately touching her in 1989 in a dressing room. At the time, she was guest starring as a police officer. Thompson claimed that Cosby forced her to touch him inappropriately when she was 18-years-old at his New York City home. Gittens was allegedly drugged and sexually assaulted by Cosby at his home in 1990. She went to visit him to discuss a potential role on The Cosby Show, according to the lawsuit.
The alleged survivors have the opportunity to sue Cosby thanks to the New York’s Adult Survivors Act. The new legislation, which is a month old, allows abuse survivors to sue their alleged abusers even if the statue of limitations has passed.
Cosby was convicted of drugging and sexually assaulting Andrea Constand in 2018 and sentenced to three to 10 years in prison. In 2021, his conviction was overturned by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court after it was ruled that his due process rights were violated.