Woman accuses Bill Cosby of drugging, sexually assaulting her in the ’80s

A woman who says she considered Bill Cosby as “a father figure” has accused him of sexually abusing her in the 1980s.

In a lawsuit filed in New York Friday, Morganne Picard accused the actor and comedian of providing her with drinks that had been drugged, then raping or sexually assaulting her on multiple occasions between 1987 and 1990 while she was blacked out. According to the complaint, Cosby had invited Picard to the set of “The Cosby Show” in the late ’80s “under the pretense” that he wanted to meet her and help her singing career by getting her a role on the show.

Picard says she spent time with him as well as his family. When she drank beverages he provided her, she blacked out “on multiple occasions,” she alleges.

“Based on the relationship that Cosby fostered with Ms. Picard and his wholesome image as ‘America’s Dad,’ Ms. Picard assumed that the extreme effects of the beverages were attributable to the effects of alcohol, rather than to drugs placed in the beverages from Cosby,” the lawsuit reads.

“On one such occasion, Ms. Picard drank a beverage provided to her by Cosby at his home, and awoke to find herself in a hotel room, naked, with soreness in her vagina. Upon information and belief, when Ms. Picard was physically incapacitated by the unknown intoxicant, Cosby undressed and raped her, without her consent and when she did not have the capacity to consent.”

Picard’s attorney, Jordan Rutsky, said in a statement to USA TODAY, “Today was the first step towards obtaining some measure of justice for Ms. Picard. We want to thank New York State for passing the Adult Survivors Act, which allows Ms. Picard and other people who were sexually abused as adults to bring a civil lawsuit until November 23, 2023, regardless of when the abuse occurred.”

“We look forward to holding Mr. Cosby and his enablers responsible for their actions,” Rutsky added.

Bill Cosby’s rep says he denies all allegations

In this April 26, 2018, file photo, Bill Cosby, center, leaves the Montgomery County Courthouse in Norristown, Pennsylvania.

In this April 26, 2018, file photo, Bill Cosby, center, leaves the Montgomery County Courthouse in Norristown, Pennsylvania.

Cosby’s representative, Andrew Wyatt, told USA TODAY in a statement that “It is disappointing to see that these alleged distractors are able to monetize false allegations against Mr. Cosby. Even more disturbing, the Merson Law Firm (New York City) decided to incite this lynching of this American Citizen. I am reminded of a photo a man hanging from a tree burning, as the plantation owner hosted a barbecue and party for the slaves as this Black Man was being roasted alive, without the sheer facts of any evidence, proof, truth or facts.”

Wyatt said that accusers such as Picard are “fueling false narratives for the potential of media fame and greed. Mr. Cosby continues to invoke his Constitutional Rights by saying, ‘Not Guilty’ and vehemently denying all of these alleged allegations waged against him.”

The companies that produced and aired “The Cosby Show,” which ran for eight seasons on NBC between 1984 to 1992, were also listed as defendants in the case. Picard accuses them of negligence as “they knew or should have known that Cosby was sexually assaulting, assaulting, and battering women, but failed to stop it, investigate it, orprotect Ms. Picard and other women,” according to the lawsuit.

USA TODAY has reached out to representatives for NBCUniversal, film studio Kaufman Astoria Studios and production company Carsey-Werner Company for comment.

Other lawsuits across the U.S. accuse Cosby of assault

The 86-year-old former “Cosby Show” star has now been accused of rape, sexual assault and sexual harassment by more than 60 women.

Most recently, in June, nine women accused Cosby of sexual assault in a lawsuit filed in federal court in Nevada, alleging that the actor drugged and assaulted them between 1979 and 1992. Earlier that month, a former Playboy model sued Cosby and accused him of drugging and sexually assaulting her and another woman at his home in 1969.

Cosby has denied all allegations involving sex crimes. He was the first celebrity tried and convicted in the #MeToo era — and spent nearly three years at a state prison near Philadelphia before a higher court threw out the conviction and released him in 2021.

Earlier this year, a Los Angeles jury awarded $500,000 to a woman who said Cosby sexually abused her at the Playboy Mansion when she was 16 in 1975.

If you are a survivor of sexual assault, you can call the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 800.656.HOPE (4673) or visit hotline.rainn.org/online and receive confidential support.

Contributing: The Associated Press

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Bill Cosby accused of drugging, sexually assaulting woman in 1980s

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