Lili Bernard, 57, an actor who appeared on The Cosby Show, is suing Bill Cosby alleging that he drugged and raped her in 1990 when she was 26 years old.
Bernard told the Associated Press that she was prompted to pursue legal action in part by Cosby’s recent release from prison. Cosby, 84, was released from prison in June after the Pennsylvania Supreme Court overturned his 2018 sexual assault conviction on procedural grounds. He had served over two years of a ten-year sentence.
“I have waited a long time to be able to pursue my case in court and I look forward to being heard and to hold Cosby accountable for what he did to me,” Bernard said in a statement on Thursday. “Although it occurred long ago, I still live with the fear, pain and shame every day of my life.”
According to the lawsuit, Cosby initiated a mentorship with Bernard after meeting her on The Cosby Show. During one of their “mentoring sessions” in Atlantic City in August 1990, Cosby allegedly made her a nonalcoholic beverage that made her “feel symptoms of dizziness, an urge to vomit, and weakness.” Bernard then said she went in and out of consciousness, and at one point found Cosby “naked atop her.”
Cosby’s spokesperson, Andrew Wyatt, released a statement on the former comedian’s Instagram account, saying, “These look back provisions are unconstitutional.”
“They are a sheer violation of an individual’s Constitutional Rights and deny that individual of their Due Process rights,” he added. “This is just another attempt to abuse the legal process by opening up the flood gates for people, who never presented an ounce of evidence, proof, truth and/or facts, in order to substantiate their alleged allegations. Mr. Cosby continues to maintain steadfast in his innocence and will vigorously fight ANY alleged allegations waged against him and is willing and able to take this fight to the highest court in these United States of America.”