Janice Dickinson has received a “very large settlement” to her four-year defamation case against Bill Cosby, the ex-America’s Next Top Model judge’s lawyer said today. But the imprisoned man once known as America’s Dad is not happy about it at all.
Calling AIG the “worst and egregious insurance company in America’s history,” representatives for Cosby said Thursday that “this is the third example in recent months of AIG robbing Mr. Cosby of the opportunity to clear his name in a court of law, where evidence and truthfulness are supposed to be elevated above headlines and gossip.” (Read the full statement from Cosby’s team below.)
“AIG’s apparent strategy to have Mr. Cosby tried exclusively in the court of public opinion has become clear, and its decision to settle each of these lawsuits over Mr. Cosby’s objections is illustrative of AIG’s bad faith,” the statement on behalf of officially labeled sexual predator Cosby continues. “To be clear, AIG’s settlement of this lawsuit has no bearing whatsoever on the merit of Ms. Dickinson’s claims.”
Having fought Cosby up and down the California court system and given “prior bad acts” testimony last year in his criminal retrial for the 2004 rape of Andrea Constand, Dickinson and her team have a very different POV on what they see as a clear victory.
“Truthfully, a settlement is a victory and certainly a measure of justice, and helps me sleep better, but in reality, nothing can ever erase the experience and memories of an assault,” she reveled today. “Jail is where he belongs, but there aren’t enough years left for him to pay for what he has done to so many women.” (Read Dickinson’s full statement below.)
With details familiar to dozens of other allegations against Cosby over the decades, Dickinson claims the actor raped her in 1982 in Lake Tahoe. While the statute of limitations prevented criminal charges from being pursued, Dickinson went the civil route based on Cosby’s then-longtime lawyer Marty Singer declaring that the incident never happened. He also branded Dickinson a “liar” in November 2014 to media outlets when she brought up the incident. Kicking off years of legal battles, Dickinson formally took the matter to court in May 2015, and in November of that year she filed an amended complaint that named Singer a defendant.
The lawyer later was removed from the case, then added again after an October 2017 Court of Appeal ruling that was followed in April 2018 with agreement from the Golden State’s Supreme Court. When the U.S. Supreme Court declined to review the matter for Cosby last October, the writing was on the wall toward either a trial or today’s conclusion.
“This amount means that Janice will be fully and fairly compensated for being branded a liar,” high-profile attorney and ex-Harvey Weinstein lawyer Lisa Bloom said of the confidential agreement with AIG in the matter. “She is free to tell her story whenever and wherever she chooses. That was important. The only confidentiality we agreed to was as to the settlement amount. So I can’t tell you the number, but I can say that it is an epic amount that is a powerful statement from Cosby’s own insurance company that Janice had the winning case.” (Read Bloom’s full statement below.)
In a move to get Cosby behind it, the insurance company came to an agreement with seven women in a long-running defamation lawsuit against in early April. That was quickly followed by a deal late that same month, with Chloe Goins over an alleged assault at the Playboy Mansion in Los Angeles in 2008 when the accuser was 18. In both cases, Cosby repudiated the settlements publicly with venom and vinegar.
Having been sentenced to up to a decade behind bars in Pennsylvania last year for the assault against former Temple University employee Constand, Cosby has been on a near-constant tirade from state prison against his sentence, the judge in the case, the five “bad prior acts” witnesses such as Dickinson and virtually everything else as he attempts to recast himself as a political prisoner. Motions and proclamations to be let out and to get a new trial have fallen on deaf ears so far.
However, the latest appeal has resulted in a hearing scheduled for August 12 in the Pennsylvania Superior Court in Harrisburg.
With his latest set of lawyers up at bat, Cosby himself is not expected to be in the courtroom — but you never know in this case.
Here’s the full statement today from Bill Cosby’s representatives:
Mr. Cosby’s counsel has been informed that AIG has yet again agreed to settle a lawsuit over Mr. Cosby’s objections, this time settling claims brought by Janice Dickinson concerning statements made by Mr. Cosby’s former attorney. To be clear, AIG’s settlement of this lawsuit has no bearing whatsoever on the merit of Ms. Dickinson’s claims. Mr. Cosby has every confidence that, had the case proceeded to trial, a jury would have found that the statements issued by his former attorney—statements which Mr. Cosby himself never spoke and which he played no part in preparing—were not defamatory. This is the third example in recent months of AIG robbing Mr. Cosby of the opportunity to clear his name in a court of law, where evidence and truthfulness are supposed to be elevated above headlines and gossip. AIG’s apparent strategy to have Mr. Cosby tried exclusively in the court of public opinion has become clear, and its decision to settle each of these lawsuits over Mr. Cosby’s objections is illustrative of AIG’s bad faith.
If AIG read Ms. Dickinson’s transcript from the trial…she stated in her book, “Bill Cosby blew me off and would not sleep with me; so I went back to my room and took (2) quaaludes and went to sleep.” The worst and egregious insurance company (AIG) in America’s history decides to settle – Not Smart.
Here is the full statement Thursday from Janice Dickinson:
It’s been over 4 years of being labeled a liar and shamed by Cosby, living beneath my potential and having my work dried up due to the lies he told about me.
Thankfully, Lisa Bloom has brought justice into my life by her tireless dogged persistence fighting for my life.
Truthfully, a settlement is a victory and certainly a measure of justice, and helps me sleep better, but in reality, nothing can ever erase the experience and memories of an assault. Jail is where he belongs, but there aren’t enough years left for him to pay for what he has done to so many women.
I have to say that the fear of being insulted and attacked is unfortunately justified, as we have seen and still see every day, but inhibiting ourselves because of fear or shame is just so negative. Let’s stop yielding power to the ‘perp’. I found that regardless of other’s opinions, coming out with the truth and insisting on the truth was the best path for me. And in doing so I found that many people: male and female, young and old, are supportive of the TRUTH when you come out.
Sisters, my advice to you is ‘never give up’, tell your story and stand up for your rights!
Here is the full statement from attorney Lisa Bloom:
Almost five years ago I watched Janice Dickinson tell her story on TV that Bill Cosby had drugged and raped her in 1982. Her story was so real and raw and heartbreaking. I had never met Janice but I wanted to help her. Having represented sexual assault victims for decades, I knew what Bill Cosby had on his side: the statute of limitations, those legal filing deadlines that are every predator’s get out of jail free card.
The next day, I saw that Bill Cosby, through his representatives, went on the attack against Janice, calling her a liar, and they did this day after day for several days.
I had an idea. She may not be able to sue now for the sexual assault due to the statute, but she might have a defamation claim. I went on CNN and said that Janice Dickinson could sue Bill Cosby for calling her a liar.
I hoped Janice would call me. She did call me. I was delighted that I might be able to deliver justice to her.
Immediately we launched into an extensive investigation, and we were able to obtain multiple witness statements, under oath. People who remembered that Janice had told them what Cosby had done to her, decades ago, well before any other woman publicly accused Cosby of rape. I’d like to especially thank publisher Judith Regan, writer Pablo Fenjves, Dr. Drew Pinsky, Sandy Lintner and Edward Tricome who were willing to stick their necks out and sign truthful statements in support of Janice.
When we filed the defamation lawsuit early in 2015, many said we could not win against someone as beloved, rich and famous as Bill Cosby. He was America’s Dad, the Pudding Pop guy, the star of one of the most popular shows that had ever been on TV. Other lawyers said that our defamation claim was a stretch. That Janice was too wild and crazy to be believed.
Bill Cosby had a revolving cast of Big Law law firms fighting us every step of the way, filing motions and appeals, one after the other, hoping to bury us, hoping to exhaust us, hoping we’d give up in defeat.
But my hardworking team, which included Avi Goldstein, who fought for Janice month after month, year after year, beat them in court time after time. We won a reported appellate ruling holding that rape victims can sue their abusers for calling them liars, opening the courthouse doors for other victims who might otherwise have the doors slammed in their face because of the statute of limitations. My associate attorney Tiffany Pourshamtobi did essential research, drafting and opposing briefs. Our senior paralegal Steve Conlon made sure all our court filings were done properly and on time. Avi, Tiffany and Steve worked tirelessly for four years and three cheers for them! Our senior attorney Franklin Ferguson worked on the latest appeal and could not be here today, but his work was vital to this victory too.
Last year Bill Cosby’s criminal trial was coming up, and prosecutors asked us whether Janice would testify as a “prior bad act” witness. Most civil attorneys would say no to this request. There were many reasons to say no, and only one reason to say yes: because it was the right thing to do. I worked with Janice to get her ready and she testified like the brave queen she is. We have now accepted a very large settlement amount from Bill Cosby’s insurance company. This amount means that Janice will be fully and fairly compensated for being branded a liar. She is free to tell her story whenever and wherever she chooses. That was important. The only confidentiality we agreed to was as to the settlement amount. So I can’t tell you the number, but I can say that it is an epic amount that is a powerful statement from Cosby’s own insurance company that Janice had the winning case.
Cosby and his team misjudged my girl Janice. Yes, she was scared in 2014 when she told her story. Yes, she was anxious in 2015 when she filed her lawsuit. Yes, she got frustrated by the slow moving legal system and all its delays. But as time went by, she got stronger. She got more focused. She went from victim to survivor to winner. Janice became a warrior for justice, and she never gave up.
Janice, on behalf of everyone at The Bloom Firm, we salute you, we honor you, we are so proud of you. It has been one of the great honors of my life to deliver justice to you.
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