Cosby Show co-star Phylicia Rashad tweeted her support for her longtime colleague Bill Cosby shortly after his sexual assault conviction was overturned Wednesday.
‘FINALLY!!!! A terrible wrong is being righted- a miscarriage of justice is corrected!’ she wrote in the tweet posted at 1.30pm.
Rashad played Claire Huxtable, the wife of Cosby’s character Cliff Huxtable, on all eight seasons, from 1984 to 1992, of the Emmy Award-winning sitcom.
Rashad, who was recently named dean of the Howard University College of Fine Arts, has supported her former co-star in the past despite the allegations against him.
Phylicia Rashad tweeted her support for her longtime Cosby Show colleague Bill Cosby shortly after his sexual assault conviction was overturned Wednesday
Cosby, shortly after his release from the SCI Phoenix prison today
Cosby, 83, was released from the SCI Phoenix prison in Skippack Township today after Pennsylvania’s Supreme Court overturned his sexual assault conviction in a surprise decision, ruling that testimony from five women who told a jury that he’d abused them on separate occasions over 30 years impeded his chances of a fair trial.
The Justices also ruled that a promise by Montgomery County District Attorney Bruce Castor that he was not going to prosecute Cosby led the comedian to make incriminating comments in a civil deposition, that prosecutors ended up using to make their case against him.
He has served more than two years of a three- to 10-year sentence after being found guilty of drugging and violating Temple University sports administrator Andrea Constand at his suburban Philadelphia home in 2004.
Rashad played Claire Huxtable, the wife of Cosby’s character Cliff Huxtable, on all eight seasons of the Emmy Award-winning sitcom
He was the first celebrity tried and convicted in the #MeToo era, and he was arrested in 2015.
In her defense of her longtime colleague, Rashad has gone so far as to suggest the accusers against Cosby had ulterior motives.
‘What you’re seeing is the destruction of a legacy. And I think it’s orchestrated. I don’t know why or who’s doing it, but it’s the legacy. And it’s a legacy that is so important to the culture,’ she said in a 2015 interview with ABC shortly after the allegations surfaced. ‘This show represented America to the outside world. This was the American family. And now you’re seeing it being destroyed. Why?’
She has since softened her stance
Not everyone in the entertainment world celebrated the surprise development.
‘I am furious to hear this news,’ General Hospital star Amber Tamblyn wrote on Twitter. ‘I personally know women who this man drugged and raped while unconscious. Shame on the court and this decision.’
‘To every woman who was sexual assaulted by #BillCosby my heart hurts for you today and I am full fury,’ Will & Grace star Debra Messing tweeted. ‘It’s horrifying.’
Reactions to the news of Cosby’s release was varied, with many expressing outrage, and some support
Others, however, were supportive.
Singer Jennifer Hudson was among the more than 1,000 people who liked the tweet shortly after it was published.
Additionally, comedian Lil Duval tweeted: ‘Bill Cosby about to be free! City boy win summer 2021!’
He also defended Rashad, tweeting, ‘y’ass mad at the great Phylicia Rashad too huh?’
Four judges formed the majority that ruled in Cosby’s favor, while three others dissented in whole or in part.