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Bill Cosby Seeks Appeal on Sexual Assault Conviction

Bill Cosby is seeking an appeal to overturn his sexual assault conviction and three-to-10-year prison sentence, Associated Press via USA Today reports. Cosby’s lawyers have asked a Pennsylvania court to overturn the ruling, claiming multiple trial errors.

The disgraced actor’s lawyers defense motion argues that the trial evidence never proved the encounter with accuser Andrea Constand took place in 2004 and not 2003, or that Cosby was arrested within the 12-year statute of limitations.

Additionally, the defense motion claims that trial judge Steven O’Neill should not have declared Cosby “a sexually violent predator” who should be in jail to protect the community, calling the sentence more punitive than necessary since the crime typically garners a two-to-three year sentence and cited that Cosby is 81 and blind.

The defense motion further said O’Neill improperly considered trial testimony from five other Cosby accusers, claiming that “prior bad act” testimony to the question of his guilt or innocence should have been limited. His lawyers are also challenging the state’s sex offender laws, which require judges find that a sexual violent predator has a “mental abnormality.” His lawyers said the term has no legal or psychological meaning, yet defendants are subjected to lifetime counseling and must register with police.

In April, a jury ruled that Cosby was guilty of three counts of indecent aggravated assault against Andrea Constand in 2004. He has been in prison since he was sentenced on September 25th.

Beyond his criminal conviction, Cosby still faces civil court, where 10 women have filed suits claiming he sexually assaulted them, New York Times reports. The suits have primarily been on hold during the criminal trial.

The cases were all filed before he was criminally charged. Cosby has denied the women’s accusations, claiming any sexual relationships were consensual. His lawyers may seek to continue to postpone the civil case proceedings while they pursue the current appeal.

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