The Los Angeles District Attorney has declined to file criminal charges against Bill Cosby, officials said Wednesday, just one week after Pennsylvania District Attorney-Elect filled criminal charges.
After evaluating two separate allegations of sexual misconduct from 1965 and 2008, the D.A.’s office determined that they could not file charges of forcible rape, misdemeanor sexual battery or misdemeanor indecent exposure because the statute of limitations on those charges had expired, according to court documents.
The D.A.’s office also wrote that they considered filing a felony charge of sexual battery by restraint, but there was insufficient evidence to support it. There was no evidence to support charges of sexual assaults by intoxication or of an unconscious victim, attempts to commit such crimes, or assault with intent to commit a sex offense, they added.
“We are satisfied that the Los Angeles DA’s Office fully and fairly evaluated all the facts and evidence, and came to the right conclusion,” Cosby’s attorney Chris Tayback told ABC News.
The Los Angeles ruling, which does not name the two accusers, comes a week after Cosby was criminally charged in Pennsylvania with sexually assaulting a woman in his home near Philadelphia after plying her with drugs and alcohol in 2004.
The woman in the earlier Los Angeles case said she was 17 when the alleged assault occurred. The woman in the later case said she was 18 at the time of the alleged rape. The women in both cases said Cosby plied them with alcohol.
The Pennsylvania case, filed just before the statute of limitations for criminal prosecution in that state was due to lapse, stems from allegations by a former Temple University employee, Andrea Constand, who settled a civil case against Cosby for an undisclosed sum in 2006.
According to the paperwork, the office investigated crimes alleged by two Jane Does.
Jane Doe #1 claimed that she was forced by Cosby to have sex with him in 1965 when she was 17 years old. Gloria Allred, who represents the woman, said that her client was “very disappointed” by the D.A.’s decision.
“It is very difficult for a person who alleges that she is a victim to understand that there are arbitrary time periods set by law and that if allegations are not reported within that time period that it will be too late for a prosecutor to pursue them even if a prosecutor believes that there is sufficient evidence to prove that case beyond a reasonable doubt,” Allred told ABC News in a statement.
Jane Doe #2, who has been publicly named as Chloe Goins, alleged that in 2008, Cosby drugged her and molested her at the Playboy Mansion when she was 18. Spencer Kuvin of the Law Offices of Craig Goldenfarb, who represents Goins, said that his client was also upset.
“However, we recognize that the bar for criminal prosecution, which is proving guilt beyond a reasonable doubt, is extremely high. We nonetheless commend the efforts of the LAPD and the District Attorney’s office with respect to their criminal investigation,” Kuvin said in a statement to ABC News. “This criminal investigation did reveal some very important evidence. Most importantly, it uncovered documentary proof that Mr. Cosby was at the Playboy Mansion in early 2008, a time when Ms. Goins was under eighteen years old.”
According to Los Angeles ABC affiliate KABC, in October, Goins filed a civil suit against Cosby, accusing him of drugging and sexually assaulting her. That lawsuit is still ongoing.
Currently, the comedian, 78, is facing a charge of aggravated indecent assault stemming from a 2004 alleged incident in Pennsylvania. He was released on $1 million bail and is due in court later this month.
“The charge by the Montgomery County District Attorney’s office came as no surprise, filed 12 years after the alleged incident and coming on the heels of a hotly contested election for this county’s DA during which this case was made the focal point,” said Cosby’s attorney, Monique Pressley, in a statement to ABC News. “Make no mistake, we intend to mount a vigorous defense against this unjustified charge and we expect that Mr. Cosby will be exonerated by a court of law.”
Cosby has denied wrongdoing and has filed suit against seven of his accusers, claiming they have defamed him.
Statutes of limitations vary widely from state to state when it comes to sexual crimes, from as short as a year for misdemeanors in some states to no deadline for rape in others. The charges filed this week in Montgomery County, Pa., came barely a month before the end of the 12-year window that prosecutors there had to charge Cosby in the alleged 2004 assault.