Comedian Bill Cosby’s parole application for his 3 to 10 year prison sentence for sexual assault has been denied because he refuses required therapy for violent sexual predators.
“We knew he was going to be rejected,” Cosby spokesman Andrew Wyatt told Reuters. “He called me and told me that if he didn’t take the course he would be refused. He maintained his innocence from the start.
Wyatt said Cosby “still hopes” to win his appeals, even though he continues to refuse mandatory therapy.
Cosby, now 83, was sentenced to 3 to 10 years in prison in 2018 after being convicted of drugs and sexually assaulting Andrea Constand in 2004 at his suburban Philadelphia mansion. Constand, a basketball coach at Temple University at the time, viewed Cosby, a much older influential school donor, as a professional mentor.
Five other women testified against Cosby during his trial, claiming he drugged and assaulted them in similar attacks. Dozens of other women have spoken out publicly with similar accusations.
Cosby insisted the sex was consensual, and later called his trial a “set-up.”
Cosby, once a leading figure in the entertainment industry known as “America’s Father” for his role as the Huxtable head of the household on the sitcom “The Cosby Show,” was to be eligible for parole as of September 25. He was interviewed for consideration earlier this month. He is serving his sentence at the Phoenix State Correctional Facility, outside of Philadelphia.
In a letter detailing its decision, the parole board cited Cosby’s inability to complete therapy, failure to develop a parole plan and a “negative recommendation” from correctional officers.
Laura Treaster, spokesperson for the Pennsylvania Parole Board, said in a statement that Cosby would not be considered for parole until he completed therapy for violent sexual predators. Officials will interview Cosby again after “being told he’s finished programming,” Treaster told People magazine.
The Pennsylvania Supreme Court heard arguments in Cosby’s appeal against his conviction in December. The court has yet to rule.
The denial of parole was first reported on Facebook by journalist Nicole Weisensee Egan, author of the book “Chasing Cosby”.
Constand tweeted in response, “DENIED!
Calling all super HuffPost fans!
Sign up to become a Founding Member and help shape the next chapter of HuffPost