Three more women proffered themselves to be added to the list of 46 alleged sexual assault victims of Bill Cosby, the comedian who gained fame with his Bill Cosby Show.
This takes the present total to 49. The three new alleged victims are Colleen Hughes-a former air stewardess, Linda Ridgeway Whitedeer and Eden Tirl, both actresses. These women all claimed to have been sexually assaulted by Bill Cosby in the past.
The three ladies made this announcement in a press conference organized in the offices of Gloria Allred, a women’s rights lawyer, Los Angeles. She has chosen to use her office multiple times earlier for this purpose. The crusading lawyer, a leading legal foe of Cosby, referred to a New York Magazine cover wherein about 35 accusers were photographed seated in chairs and one seat was left empty symbolizing those victims who have not yet found the courage to come forward. Linda Ridgeway claimed that it was now her turn to take the empty seat.
Linda who acted in the 1972 movie ‘The Mechanic’ claimed she first met Cosby through her ex-husband who was working at William Cosby Agency, belonging to Bill Cosby. She gave a graphic description of her forced oral-sex encounter with Cosby and claimed that she was so shocked with the suddenness of the assault that she was petrified momentarily and was unable to do anything either in retaliation or defense. The reason for not complaining against him immediately was to prevent any embarrassment for her ex-husband (as Cosby was powerful in the industry) and in genuine concern for the pregnant Camille, Cosby’s wife.
Colleen Hughes in her statement said, she met Cosby in the 1970s in a flight bound for Los Angeles. She was working as an air hostess at that time. She said they had a drink together back in the hotel where he was staying and that is the last she remembers. When she woke up, she felt semen in her back and her clothes scattered in an unruly manner across the room. He tried to flirt with her again during another flight probably because he did not remember her from the previous encounter. She warned him then to back off and stay away from her colleagues too.
Eden Tirl’s claim was that Cosby accosted and harassed her sexually during the shoot of an episode of ‘The Cosby Show’ in 1989 wherein she played the part of a cop. Before this, she was a big fan of the comedian giving him credit for opening the doors of all-white American television industry for mixed-race and black Americans.
Bill Cosby, for his part, continues to deny these allegations and maintains his innocence. He said his lawyers will respond to the accusers’ legal notices. However, in a 2005 sexual assault lawsuit disposition against him, which is now in the public domain, Cosby ‘admitted under oath to obtaining Quaaludes’ so that he could use it on women on whom he had sexual desires.