LOS ANGELES — A lawyer for Bill Cosby called the increasing number of claims of sexual assault against the legendary comedian “ridiculous” and said the media should stop airing “unsubstantiated, fantastical stories.”
Martin D. Singer said in a written statement that it defies common sense that “so many people would have said nothing, done nothing, and made no reports to law enforcement or asserted civil claims if they thought they had been assaulted over a span of so many years.”
Cosby, 77, has not faced a judge or jury, let alone been convicted, regarding any accusations. At least 10 women now have raised allegations against him.
On Friday, Cosby told Florida Today he wasn’t going to respond to “innuendos,” referring to the women’s accusations.
“I know people are tired of me not saying anything, but a guy doesn’t have to answer to innuendos. People should fact-check. People shouldn’t have to go through that and shouldn’t answer to innuendos,” Cosby told the newspaper in a backstage interview before his sellout performance at the King Center for the Performing Arts in Melbourne.
His show began to a standing ovation, and he didn’t mention the allegation during his 90-minute act, the newspaper said.
Stories of Cosby’s purported misdeeds have been around for about a decade, but they recently got new life when another comedian took aim at him.
Singer said there are plenty of attorneys who are ready to help victims file lawsuits against rich, powerful men. He blamed the media for the rise in the number of women who recently have alleged Cosby assaulted them or was sexually aggressive.
“Over and over again, we have refuted these new unsubstantiated stories with documentary evidence, only to have a new uncorroborated story crop up out of the woodwork. When will it end?” he asked. “It is long past time for this media vilification of Mr. Cosby to stop.”
The media is violating its own reporting standards by rushing the women’s stories to air or print, he said.
“The new, never-before-heard claims from women who have come forward in the past two weeks with unsubstantiated, fantastical stories about things they say occurred 30, 40, or even 50 years ago have escalated far past the point of absurdity,” he wrote, adding the claims are “increasingly ridiculous.”
For decades, Cosby was thought of in glowing terms as a perceptive comedian, upbeat pitchman and genial father figure. His public personality made him more than rich — it made him a role model, admired for his support of education and his no-nonsense talks on parenting and achievement.
In recent weeks, that persona has been countered by another, much more sinister image, one Singer vehemently disputes.AlertMe