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Andrea Constand Says Court Ruling Overturning Bill Cosby’s Conviction Made Her 'Sick'

Andrea Constand, who is out with a new memoir, says the Pennsylvania Supreme Court let a "predator" loose when they overturned Bill Cosby's sexual assault conviction in June.

By Constance Johnson
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Andrea Constand, whose accusation of sexual assault led to a criminal conviction of Bill Cosby, told the New York Times that she would do it all again even though that conviction was overturned by a Pennsylvania court in June.

“I had a lump in my throat,” Constand told the Times. “I really felt they were setting a predator loose and that made me sick.”

Constand, now 48, was weeks away from the publication of her memoir, The Moment, out this week, when she learned of the decision. She details her reaction to that ruling and her involvement in the case in the book. She also reveals details about growing up in Canada, her college and professional basketball career and coming out as gay. Constand told the paper that she became ill with COVID-19 as she was writing the book, but confronting her mortality inspired her to finish it.

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“I thought it was important to write the story for other survivors who had stories, too,” she told the Times. “I wanted to be a symbol of hope to them. That their stories matter. And their stories are important.”

Cosby had spent nearly three years behind bars when he was released in June. He had been sentenced to three to 10 years in 2018, but the the Pennsylvania Supreme Court overturned his conviction, determining that Cosby’s case should have never been prosecuted because the comedian had relied on a promised from a district attorney that he would never face charges after providing incriminating testimony in Constand’s civil lawsuit. Cosby settled the lawsuit by paying Constand more than $3 million. 

The comedian admitted in a deposition that he supplied women with quaaludes before sex. But Cosby, now 84, has vehemently denied any misconduct, blaming his conviction on an unjust legal system. 

His conviction was not only a victory for Constand after two trial — the first ended with a mistrial — but for the dozens of women who had accused the comedian of sexual assault, and in some cases, rape. Constand told the Times that after the Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruling, she was bombarded with emails, some from the other women who said they were assaulted by the man once known as “America’s Dad.”

“They were devastated,” she said. “They were so angry.”

But ultimately Constand says any blame for Cosby’s release is on the court.

“After a few deep breaths, I just felt this is not my problem,” she told the paper. “Now it made me feel the shame is on the Supreme Court. It’s not on me anymore.”

Prosecutors must decided sometime this month whether to appeal the decision to the U.S. Supreme Court. Constand said she is willing to subject herself to a third trial, but would consult with her family before making a final decision.

“Yeah, I would do it all over again,” she told the Times. “If it was to do the right thing. I would do anything, as long as it was for the right reason.”

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