Partner Joseph Cammarata, who is currently representing several women in a pending civil lawsuit against Bill Cosby, was recently quoted in The Washington Post and other major news sources on the comedian’s criminal sentencing hearing. Cosby, 81, was sentenced on Tuesday to 3 to 10 years in a Pennsylvania state prison. The presiding Judge also designated Cosby as a sexually violent predator, which means he will be required to register as a sex offender.
Partner Cammarata, who attended the sentencing at Montgomery County, Pennsylvania, stated: “Today, we celebrate the rule of law. The jury spoke through its verdict that abhorrent sexual behavior is not to be tolerated in a civilized society.”
The sentence has made international headlines for concluding one of the first major celebrity criminal trials in the #MeToo era. In April, Cosby was convicted of three counts of aggravated indecent assault for drugging and sexually assaulting Temple University employee Andrea Constand in 2004. During her testimony at trial, Constand discussed the assault in harrowing detail, and later asked simply for justice at sentencing. In his ruling, Judge Steven O’Neill stated there was overwhelming evidence, including Cosby’s own words in a civil deposition, that he planned to drug and sexually assault his victim.
In addition to being quoted in The Washington Post, Mr. Cammarata also shared his insight in a televised phone interview with Fox News, which can be viewed here.
Criminal Case Concludes, But Civil Lawsuits Move Forward
Although as many as 60 women have stepped forward to accuse Cosby of sexual misconduct and assault, the prison sentence relates only to one criminal case and victim. That’s because many of the accusations, some dating back to the 1960s, are too old to prosecute under the expired statute of limitations. There have been successful efforts to extend the statute of limitations in other states where Cosby is accused of similar crimes, but for some victims who commented on the case, his prison sentence is in many ways much-needed and long-overdue justice.
While some Cosby accusers may not be able to have their day in criminal court, there are still civil lawsuits pending against the former comedian. This includes a civil lawsuit being handled by Partner Joseph Cammarata and our legal team. In the suit, Mr. Cammarata represents multiple women who claim they were sexually abused or assaulted by Mr. Cosby, and that they were defamed as liars after stepping forward to publicly disclose their accounts of the alleged abuse and assault. The complaint also alleges claims for false light (involving offensive and embarrassing implications) and intentional infliction of emotional distress (resulting in extreme psychological distress).
That case, which is currently pending in the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts, Western Division, is an important legal action that will provide victims who are otherwise unable to pursue justice through the criminal justice system to have their day in court and make their voices heard.
Partner Cammarata, no stranger to representing victims of sexual abuse against powerful celebrities and political figures, made the following statement:
“Today’s sentencing of Bill Cosby should be the Clarion Call to those who use their positions of power over unsuspecting victims that their days of criminal misbehavior are over, and more importantly, that their days of freedom from their criminal conduct are numbered. I cannot rest, I will not rest, until my clients claims are vindicated in a Court of Justice. As a nation of laws, we owe it to all victims of abuse to let their voices be heard in the proper forum of our American Court system, and I am confident that once my clients finally have the opportunity to speak, that they will finally get the Justice that they seek, and the peace of mind not only that they deserve, but also have sought for these many long years.”
Joseph Cammarata is a nationally recognized Trial Attorney and Partner at Chaikin, Sherman, Cammarata & Siegel, P.C. Over a career spanning more than 30 years, he has cultivated a reputation for tenaciously protecting victims’ rights and for securing victories in challenging and noteworthy cases that still have implications today. This includes his representation of Paula Jones in a civil lawsuit against former President Bill Clinton, and winning a unanimous decision from the United States Supreme Court that guarantees the right of equal access to justice, even against figures as prominent and powerful as the President of the United States.
For more information about Partner Cammarata and his work, please contact us.