Cosby remains quiet as new rape allegations come to light

Updated

Comedian Bill Cosby is facing new rape allegations in an ongoing controversy that refuses to die down and has threatened to permanently taint the legendary performer’s legacy.

Attorney Marty Singer, who represents Cosby, hit back hard Thursday night against recent allegations by Linda Joy Traitz, a woman who claims Cosby sexually assaulted her at age 19 several decades ago. “Ms. Traitz is the latest example of people coming out of the woodwork with fabricated or unsubstantiated stories about my client,” said Singer.

Meanwhile, character actress Louisa Moritz told TMZ that Cosby assaulted her backstage at “The Tonight Show” back in 1971. “He took his hands and put them on the back of my head and forced his penis in my mouth, saying, ‘have a taste of this. It will do you good in so many ways,” Moritz told the gossip site.

TMZ has also published photos of Cosby allegedly taken by model Janice Dickinson moments before she claims he assaulted her in 1982. Cosby can be seen in the “patchwork robe” Dickinson described the comedian as wearing when she recounted his alleged assault on “Entertainment Tonight” earlier this week. 

Cosby has never been charged with a crime and has maintained a position of not speaking out publicly about the allegations against him. On Thursday, he performed at a planned stand-up gig in the Bahamas and made no mention of the controversy.

“I want to hear the truth,” Wayne Scherr of Wagner, South Dakota, who attended the performance with his brother, told NBC News on Thursday night, adding “maybe the timing isn’t right yet.” Cosby’s attorneys have said in a statement that the comedian does not want to “dignify” the accusations against him with a statement. Still, the fallout from the story has led to the cancellation of a planned new sitcom on NBC and the postponement of a Netflix stand-up special starring the comedian.

On Thursday, a previously recorded Associated Press interview with Cosby was widely circulated showing the comedian refusing to answer questions about the rape allegations and asking a reporter to “scuttle” the footage. Later, conservative firebrand Glenn Beck lashed out at the AP for the interview. 

“You want to talk about rape? That’s media rape, right there,” Beck said on his self-titled radio program.

“You’ve just raped Bill Cosby. You said you wouldn’t do it. You just did it and then you blamed it on him. My gosh, maybe we should have a lesson on rape,” he added.

Cosby has an upcoming stand-up performance scheduled this month at the King Center for the Performing Arts in Melbourne, Florida, that is still on. The King Center called the embattled comedian “a well-respected member of the entertainment community and one of America’s most beloved performers.” 

“While we are aware of the allegations reported in the press, we are only in a position to judge him based on his career as an entertainer and humanitarian,” they added.

Still, other shows and organizations are distancing themselves from Cosby. Planned appearances on “The Late Show with David Letterman” and “The Queen Latifah Show” have been canceled. The Treasure Island Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas pulled the plug on a Cosby performance scheduled there for Nov. 28. And the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAP) has called for a Dec. 5 dinner which was to feature Cosby to be canceled. “The Dec. 5 dinner at Freed-Hardmann University near Jackson is for a worthy cause. But that doesn’t obscure the fact that it also honors a credibly accused sex offender,” SNAP said in a statement.

While SNAP acknowledged that Cosby has never been charged with a crime or convicted, “the sheer number of allegations he faces, however, and the credibility of those accusers makes most people accept the very likely reality that he did in fact sexually assault at least some – if not all – of these women.” 

Morning Joe, 11/21/14, 6:28 AM ET

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Bill Cosby, Celebrities, Glenn Beck, Rape and Sexual Assault

Cosby remains quiet as new rape allegations come to light

Updated