Videos by OutKick
Pennsylvania’s highest court overturned Bill Cosby’s sex assault conviction Wednesday, finding an agreement with a previous prosecutor prevented him from being charged in the case, the AP first reports.
The Pennsylvania Supreme Court said that District Attorney Kevin Steele, who made the decision to arrest Cosby in 2015, was obligated to stand by a predecessor’s promise not to charge Cosby.
The 7-member court ruled Mr. Cosby, 83, had been denied a fair trial in 2018.
In Sep. 2018, Cosby was sentenced to three to 10 years in state prison on a felony sexual assault charge.
Here’s the full 79-page opinion:
In their 79-page opinion, the judges wrote that a “non-prosecution agreement” struck with a previous prosecutor meant that he should not have been charged in the case, and that Mr. Cosby should be discharged. They barred a retrial in the case.
“The trial judge had allowed just one other accuser to testify at Cosby’s first trial, when the jury deadlocked,” the report adds. “However, he then allowed five other accusers to testify at the retrial about their experiences with Cosby in the 1980s.
“The Pennsylvania Supreme Court said that testimony tainted the trial, even though a lower appeals court had found it appropriate to show a signature pattern of drugging and molesting women.”
The prosecution cannot appeal the decision in the state of Pennsylvania.
Cosby’s publicist, Andrew Wyatt, told USA TODAY Thursday that the decision “is not a surprise” because the board explicitly stated he would be denied parole “if he did not participate in SVP (Sexually Violent Predator) courses.”
“Mr. Cosby has vehemently proclaimed his innocence and continues to deny all allegations made against him, as being false, without the sheer evidence of any proof,” Wyatt said in a statement. “Mr. Cosby continues to remain hopeful that the Pennsylvania State Supreme Court will issue an opinion to vacate his conviction or warrant him a new trial.”
Wyatt will pick Cosby up from prison within hours.
That’s right, Cosby just got off on a technicality.
*This is a breaking news story. Check back to OutKick for updates.