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Actress Sunni Welles, Who Accused Sex Offender Bill Cosby Of Assault, Dead At 72

“She was an extraordinary woman,” film producer Shaun O'Banion said of his mother Sunni Welles.

By Dorian Geiger
Sunni Welles G

Television actress and singer Sunni Welles, who was one of dozens of women to come forward and accuse Bill Cosby of sexual assault, has died after a battle with lung cancer. 

Welles’ son announced the entertainer’s passing on Monday.

"It is with profound sadness that I announce that my mother, Sunni Kay Welles, passed away today at the age of 72," movie producer Shaun O'Banion wrote on social media. “If you have a moment, give a listen and think of her. She was an extraordinary woman.”

According to Variety, Sunny passed away in Dewey California.

The 72-year-old launched her career in television at the age of 10, appearing in Leave It To Beaver and My Three Sons. She also acted in her son’s productions, including O’Banion’s 2004 short film, Lift. She also worked in dance and music. 

Welles danced with the Folies Bergère musical variety show in Las Vegas and was a jazz singer in the band Shiver.

In 2015, Welles accused Cosby of raping her as a teenager. In the sixties, the pair reportedly met on the set of I Spy. She claimed that Cosby drugged her at a jazz club after she ordered a Coca-Cola. According to Welles’ lawyer, “things became blurry” after she drank the soda in Cosby’s company.

“I don’t remember leaving the Club,” Welles said. “I don’t remember driving anywhere else. What I do remember next was waking up naked in a bed alone in a sparsely furnished apartment. Bill was not there. There was no note. The place had a phone and after finding some lemonade in the small refrigerator, I called a cab to take me home. When I got home I showered and felt as if I had had sex, but I did not want to believe that a family friend would do that to me.”

Cosby alleged she’d been drinking champagne on the night of the suspected sexual assault. 

The musician later claimed Cosby raped her a second time after the two met at Magic Castle, where she said she also wasn’t drinking. Welles said she woke up nude in the same apartment.

No funeral services are planned for Welles, according to Variety.

Cosby was convicted in 2018. He was sentenced to three to 10 years in prison, however, his conviction was overturned on a legal technicality in June. 

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