Phylicia Rashad supports Bill Cosby after conviction overturned: ‘FINALLY!!!!’

After the former Cosby Show star tweeted her support, she then clarified her position in a subsequent post

Phylicia Rashad, who played Bill Cosby’s wife on The Cosby Show, spoke out on Wednesday following the announcement that the disgraced TV star was being released from prison after his sexual assault conviction was overturned.

“FINALLY!!!!” she wrote on Twitter. “A terrible wrong is being righted — a miscarriage of justice is corrected!”

While she turned off the comments under the post, her tweet ignited a slew of angry responses. Rashad responded to the stinging criticism with another post hours later.

However, the damage was done.

Medium contributor Kendall Youens retweeted Rashad’s post and wrote “It turns out the only thing more cringe than watching a woman defend her rapist husband is watching a woman defend her rapist *fictional* husband.”

When a user commented, “I was absolutely gobsmacked when I saw her tweet. Seriously, what the hell is wrong with her that she would think that tweet is appropriate?”

Youens replied: “Also to not only think it’s appropriate but that it’s worth torching her own career to tweet! Like girl….lots of people have fucked up thoughts, and just don’t tweet them. The sheer lack of self-preservation is astonishing.”

Celebrities Visit SiriusXM - January 13, 2020
Phylicia Rashad visits SiriusXM Studios on January 13, 2020 in New York City. (Photo by Dia Dipasupil/Getty Images)

As previously reported on theGrio, Pennsylvania’s highest court overturned Cosby’s sex assault conviction Wednesday after finding an agreement with a previous prosecutor prevented him from being charged in the case.

Cosby has served more than two years of a three-to-10-year sentence at a state prison near Philadelphia. He had vowed to serve all 10 years rather than acknowledge any guilt over the 2004 encounter with accuser Andrea Constand.

The 83-year-old, who was once beloved as ‘America’s Dad,’ was convicted of drugging and molesting the Temple University employee at his suburban estate. He was charged in late 2015 when a prosecutor armed with newly unsealed evidence — Cosby’s damaging deposition from her lawsuit — arrested him days before the 12-year statute of limitations expired.

The trial judge had allowed just one other accuser to testify at Cosby’s first trial, when the jury deadlocked. However, he then allowed five other accusers to testify at the retrial about their experiences with Cosby in the 80s.

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court said that testimony tainted the trial, even though a lower appeals court had found it appropriate to show a signature pattern of drugging and molesting women.

In May, Cosby was denied parole at the Pennsylvania prison, where he has been incarcerated since 2018, due to “a number of reasons,” according to a CNN report. Cosby’s “failure to develop a parole release plan” and a “negative recommendation by the Department of Corrections” are two factors that contributed to the decision.

Cosby was also ordered to “participate in and complete additional institutional programs” — which he refused to do —including classes for sex offenders. As part of his sentencing, Cosby had to attend and successfully finish a treatment program for sex offenders and for violence prevention.

Bill Cosby Recieves Award at NBC Studio
Phylicia Rashad, Bill Cosby and actor Robert Culp in 2002 when Cosby was awarded with a star on the NBC Walk of Fame. (Photo by Mark Mainz/Getty Images)

Had the board’s May 11 decision gone otherwise, Cosby would have become eligible for parole in September after completing his prison sentence’s three-year term minimum at the State Correctional Institution at Phoenix, outside of Philadelphia. 

“Mr. Cosby has vehemently proclaimed his innocence and continues to deny all allegations made against him, as being false, without the sheer evidence of any proof,” said his spokesperson, Andrew Wyatt, in a statement at the time. “Today, Mr. Cosby continues to remain hopeful that the Pennsylvania State Supreme Court will issue an opinion to vacate his conviction or warrant him a new trial.”

Instead of a new trial, Cosby’s conviction was overturned this week after the Pennsylvania Supreme Court determined that he was denied protection against self-incrimination. The comedian was ordered released from prison and can not be retried on the same charges.

This story contains additional reporting from The Associated Press. 

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