The charges against Bill Cosby and their potential sentences
Posted June 17
Prosecutors have vowed to try Bill Cosby again, declaring the woman who accuses the comedian of drugging and molesting her at his Philadelphia-area home in 2004 is "entitled to a verdict."
A look at the charges against him, which remain active despite the mistrial that was declared Saturday after the jury deadlocked:
WHAT IS COSBY ACCUSED OF?
Drugging and sexually violating a woman at his suburban Philadelphia home in 2004. Andrea Constand says Cosby gave her pills that made her paralyzed and unable to fight him off as he groped her breast and genitals. His lawyers said they were in a romantic relationship and what happened was consensual. The Associated Press does not typically identify people who say they are victims of sexual assault unless they grant permission, which Constand has done.
WHAT IS HE CHARGED WITH?
Three counts of felony aggravated indecent assault, each covering a different aspect of the alleged crime.
Count 1 alleges that Cosby didn't have consent when he penetrated Constand's genitals with his fingers.
Count 2 alleges she was unconscious or semi-conscious at the time and could not give consent.
Count 3 alleges all this happened after he gave her an intoxicant that substantially impaired her and stopped her from resisting.
HOW MUCH TIME COULD HE HAVE FACED?
Each of the three counts carries a standard sentence range of five to 10 years in prison.
But experts say that if he had been convicted, it's likely Cosby's attorneys would have been able to successfully argue the charges be combined for sentencing purposes, since they cover the same encounter and conduct.
Under state sentencing guidelines, a conviction would have put Cosby, 79, in prison at least until he was 84.
WHAT WAS THE WORST-CASE SCENARIO FOR COSBY?
Pennsylvania law allows sentencing judges to consider uncharged conduct. In Cosby's case, that could have involved the more than 60 other women who have accused him of assaults dating to the 1960s.
Duquesne University law professor Wes Oliver said that if Cosby had been convicted, those allegations could have compelled Judge Steven O'Neill to sentence him closer to 10 years.
WOULD HE HAVE HAD TO REGISTER AS A SEX OFFENDER?
Yes. If he had been convicted, prosecutors say Cosby would have had to register as a sex offender and face an assessment to determine whether he was a sexually violent predator.