Due to the statute of limitations on rape, Bill Cosby will probably never have to face a criminal trial over any of the 40+ accusations of sexual assault made against him. So far only one civil case has been made — Andrea Constand accused him of drugging and fondling her in 2004 and named 13 other women allegedly assaulted by Cosby as potential witnesses. Cosby settled with her for an undisclosed amount in 2006.
But a new way for Cosby accusers from decades past to seek justice may have just been discovered. Former supermodel Janice Dickinson is taking Bill Cosby to court … not for the rape she says occurred in 1982 but for comments from Cosby’s lawyer calling her story a fabrication and a lie. From the California court filing, via Deadline:
For four decades, Bill Cosby drugged and raped women. Few came forward because of his immense fame, money and power. Those who did had their reputations smeared by his lawyers, publicists and spin doctors, further scaring other victims from speaking out.
Janice Dickinson, like over three dozen other Cosby victims, recently publicly disclosed that she was drugged and raped by Bill Cosby. In retaliation, Cosby, through an attorney, publicly branded her a liar and and called her rape disclosure a lie with the intent and effect of revictimizing her and destroying the professional reputation she’s spent decades building.
Ms. Dickinson brings this action for defamation and related claims.
Cosby’s lawyer put out two press releases when the story broke in November, 2014, saying “Dickinson completely fabricated the story of alleged rape” and “Janice Dickinson’s story accusing Bill Cosby of rape is a lie.” Other language in the releases called her claims “defamatory,” but no defamation suit was ever brought by Cosby against her.
Now it’s Dickinson who is bringing the whole affair to court, and while it may be difficult to prove what did or didn’t happen on a day more than 30 years ago, we have no doubt Janice plans to lay all the extensive allegations against Cosby out for public record during her case.