Bill Cosby was freed from prison and cannot be tried again after Pennsylvania’s Supreme Court overturned his 2018 conviction for drugging and sexually assaulting a woman.
The prosecutors made fatal errors. Because of their actions in a charging decision, Cosby had to testify at the civil trial to his detriment. Prosecutors had made the charge public and said they weren’t going to charge him.
NBC News reports that the court said that a prosecutor’s decision not to charge Cosby, 83, opened the door for him to speak freely in a lawsuit against him — and that testimony was key in his conviction years later by another prosecutor.
Cosby was convicted in 2018 of drugging and sexually assaulting a woman in 2004 and was serving a three- to 10-year sentence.
“When an unconditional charging decision is made publicly and with the intent to induce action and reliance by the defendant, and when the defendant does so to his detriment (and in some instances upon the advice of counsel), denying the defendant the benefit of that decision is an affront to fundamental fairness, particularly when it results in a criminal prosecution that was foregone for more than a decade,” the high court ruled.
“For these reasons, Cosby’s convictions and judgment of sentence are vacated, and he is discharged.”
Prosecutors are out of control in this country and are rarely held to account. They have become too powerful.