A California jury today ruled that Bill Cosby sexually assaulted a then-16-year-old girl 46 years ago, ordering the 84-year-old comedian to pay a $500,000 judgment to the plaintiff.
The woman, Judy Huth, is now 64 years old. Because the judgment was handed down in a civil court instead of a criminal one, Cosby faces no possibility of jail time as a result. But it’s another loss in court for a one-time pillar of Black entertainment who over several decades has been accused of drugging and raping dozens of women and girls. Almost a year ago, Cosby was released from prison after a Pennsylvania court vacated a guilty verdict against him in that state finding that prosecutors had previously promised him immunity from charges and then reneged.
Huth first came forward with her allegations in 2014. She claimed that in 1975, she and a friend met him near the set of the movie “Let’s Do It Again,” which Cosby was starring in at the time, according to the New York Times. Huth testified that Cosby invited them to a party at the Playboy Mansion—an estate owned by the late Hugh Hefner, who founded the magazine and adult entertainment empire—where he raped her.
From the New York Times
In often emotional testimony, she described how a famous man she had once admired, whose comedy records her father collected, tried to put his hand down her pants and then forced her to perform a sex act on him.
“I had my eyes closed at that point,” Ms. Huth said in court. “I was freaking out.”
Afterward, she said, she was “mad — I felt duped, fooled. I was let down. I was hurt.”
Cosby, who has always denied that he assaulted Huth or any of his other accusers, maintained that assertion in this case. His lawyers attacked Huth’s credibility.
Mr. Cosby’s lawyers had argued that she had in fact been a willing visitor to the Playboy Mansion and noted that she did not flee after what she had described as a distressing encounter with Mr. Cosby but rather stayed on at the mansion for hours, swimming in the pool, ordering cocktails and mixing with celebrities.
“Boy, did Judy and Donna enjoy themselves,” a lawyer for Mr. Cosby, Jennifer Bonjean, said, referring to Ms. Huth and her friend.