Accusers speak out: New York Magazine Cosby

Published: July 27, 2015

Accusers speak out: New York Magazine Cosby, The cover features 35 of the women who have come forward and an empty chair to signify those who have stayed silent Thirty-five of the women who have accused Bill Cosby of rape or sexual assault have been photographed and interviewed by New York Magazine.

The striking cover story features women aged from their 20s to 80, and include supermodels Beverley Johnson and Janice Dickinson, waitresses and journalists.

Mr Cosby denies any wrongdoing and has not been charged with any crime.

Barbara Bowman told the magazine: “I felt like a prisoner; I felt like I was kidnapped and hiding in plain sight.”

She continued: “I could have walked down any street in Manhattan at any time and said: ‘I’m being raped and drugged by Bill Cosby,’ but who the hell would have believed me? Nobody, nobody.”

The online New York Magazine article – which appeared to have crashed the website on Monday morning – features many similar stories, accompanied by six video interviews and portraits and group photographs by Amanda Demme.

“The group of women Cosby allegedly assaulted functions almost as a longitudinal study,” said the Magazine, “both for how an individual woman, on her own, deals with such trauma over the decades and for how the culture at large has grappled with rape over the same time period.”

It continued: “In the 60s, when the first alleged assault by Cosby occurred, rape was considered to be something violent committed by a stranger… But among younger women, and particularly online, there is a strong sense now that speaking up is the only thing to do, that a woman claiming her own victimhood is more powerful than any other weapon in the fight against rape.”

In some US states there is a statute of limitations on rape cases, meaning that there is effectively an expiry date for allegations of crimes. The time limit varies from state to state.

In the Cosby case, many of the accusations date back to the 1970s and 1980s – too long ago in the eyes of the law.

The statute of limitations is a time limit in which a person has to file a claim. If the time limit expires, the individual who wishes make a claim is barred from doing so.

Reasons for the time limit include witnesses moving or dying or an increase chance of evidence being lost or degraded.

The statute of limitations differs from state to state – California, Colorado, Illinois, Iowa, Montana, Texas and Washington have a 10-year statute of limitations. Maine has an eight-year statute. Minnesota has the shortest statute of limitations of three years.

A few states have statutes of limitations that are longer than 10 years. Pennsylvania has a 12-year statute of limitations while Georgia, Massachusetts and Washington, D.C. have 15-year statutes of limitations for some forms of rape.

Accusers speak out: New York Magazine Cosby

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