Bill Cosby planning speaking engagements about sexual assault, rep says

Cosby "is going to go out and use his voice ... to educate young men and women."

ByABC News
June 22, 2017, 10:34 PM

— -- Bill Cosby is planning speaking engagements to educate people about the sexual assault allegations made against him, his publicist, Andrew Wyatt, told ABC News Thursday.

Wyatt said that he had been contacted by a number of organizations, including churches, asking for Cosby to "come out and speak to young men and women on how this could affect their lives."

"This is bigger than Mr. Cosby now. ... Mr. Cosby is going to go out and use his voice, to let it be heard, and to try to educate young men and women on how to avoid this because they do not have the wealth of resources that he has," Wyatt said. "But I think that he can give them some direction."

He added that people don't know enough about what constitutes an allegation of sexual assault.

"You could walk in a baseball game, a crowded baseball game, and you could bump up against a female, touch her butt or her breasts by accident and that's sexual assault," Wyatt said.

Attorney Gloria Allred, who represents several woman who allege they were assaulted by Cosby, said in a statement to ABC News, "Mr. Cosby's so called workshops appear to be a transparent and slick effort to attempt to influence the jury pool from which jurors will be selected for his second criminal trial. Mr. Cosby should understand, however, that this is not about optics. It is about evidence and according to news reports at least 10 jurors out of 12 voted to convict him on one felony count."

Allred continued, "Under the circumstances Mr. Cosby should not be conducting sex assault workshops, but if he does do them then the best advice he can give to those attending is that if you do not drug and sexually assault women, then you need not worry about being charged with a crime."

ABC News has reached out to the District Attorney's office for comment.

Cosby was charged in 2015 with sexually assaulting Andrew Constand more than a decade ago, but jurors at his trial earlier this month were unable to render a unanimous verdict on any of the three counts.

Cosby, 79, pleaded not guilty and described the sexual encounter as consensual. More than 50 women have come forward with claims that the comedian drugged and/or sexually assaulted them, but Cosby has denied all allegations of wrongdoing.

Wyatt first spoke about Cosby's plans in an interview with "Good Day Alabama" Wednesday, saying the comedian will be touring next month to "talk to young people" about the allegations made against him.

"This issue can affect any young person, especially young people of today, and they need to know what they're facing when they're hanging out and partying, when they're doing certain things that they shouldn't be doing. And it also affects married men," Wyatt told the program.

Speaking to ABC News Thursday, Wyatt blamed the small room the jurors were put in for the deadlock, calling the conditions "torturous."

"You're putting people, confining them in a box, who have never been around each other, they have not lived together," he said. "We all know people like their space and to do that, I think Montgomery County [Pennsylvania] should be ashamed of themselves."

He continued: "I think it forced a deadlock. They just wanted to get out of there."

On Wednesday, ABC News reported that toward the end of the six-day jury deliberation, the vote was 10-2 that Cosby was guilty on two counts, according to a juror speaking on the condition of anonymity. A second juror told The Associated Press that the panel was almost evenly split, and that after a 10-2 vote, three people changed their minds.

Other jurors declined to comment when contacted by ABC News.

District Attorney Kevin Steele has said he plans to re-try the comedian.

ABC News' Linsey Davis and David Caplan contributed to this report.

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