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HARRISBURG, PA – According to breaking news reports, Bill Cosby is now a free man as the Pennsylvania Supreme Court threw out his 2018 sexual assault conviction on Wednesday, with a judge ruling that the prosecutor in his case had not abided by the legally-binding agreement struck by his predecessor that Cosby would not be charged.
The ruling also declared that Cosby, 83, cannot be retried for the case, in which it was originally alleged that he had drugged and molested Temple University sports administrator Andrea Constand in 2004 at his home in Philadelphia.
Cosby, once a nationally-beloved comedian and television sitcom star – often referred to as “America’s Dad” – had served over two years of a three-to-ten year sentence; according to reports, Cosby had refused to express any remorse over the incident with Constand, instead vowing to serve his entire 10-year sentence.
Cosby was originally arrested in 2015 after a district attorney introduced newly-unsealed evidence consisting of incriminating deposition testimony on the part of Cosby in response to a lawsuit brought by Constant; the actor was arrested and charged just days before the 12-year statute of limitations expired.
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However, according to the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, Cosby had given the deposition under an agreement with the District Attorney at that time that he not be charged with a crime; this is the agreement that Justice David Wecht – writing for a split court on Wednesday – stated had been violated by new District Attorney Kevin Steele, who prosecuted the case against Cosby.
In regards to overturning Cosby’s conviction, as well as barring prosecutors from ever charging him again, the court said on Wednesday that, “is the only remedy that comports with society’s reasonable expectations of its elected prosecutors and our criminal justice system.”
The agreement between Cosby and the former District Attorney was apparently verbal, as no evidence of it in writing has been found, reports say.
Cosby has been released from prison, according to a Pennsylvania Department of Corrections spokesperson.