Bill Cosby’s long relationship with his beloved Temple University has come to an end, another effect of the scandal engulfing the once adored television star and comedian.
Cosby’s Monday resignation from Temple’s board of trustees, a position he held for 32 years, was first reported in the Philadelphia Inquirer. Cosby also attended Temple.
At least 17 women have spoken publicly accusing the comedian of sexual misconduct, and many of the women say he drugged them before he raped them. Some of the alleged attacks took place decades ago.
Cosby’s attorney, Martin D. Singer, has repeatedly denied the claims. Singer said in a written statement sent to CNN that it defies common sense that “so many people would have said nothing, done nothing, and made no reports to law enforcement or asserted civil claims if they thought they had been assaulted over a span of so many years.”
“I have always been proud of my association with Temple University,” Cosby said in a statement released by the university. “I have always wanted to do what would be in the best interests of the university and its students. As a result, I have tendered my resignation from the Temple University Board of Trustees.”
“The Board of Trustees accepts Dr. Cosby’s resignation from the board and thanks him for his service to the university,” was the university’s response.
The board of trustees had been under pressure from alumni and other members of the Temple community to cut ties. A change.org petition demanding the university end its relationship with Cosby had more than 1,000 signatures as of Monday afternoon.
The University of Massachusetts at Amherst recently also cut ties with Cosby.
“Bill Cosby has agreed to resign as an honorary co-chair of UMass Amherst’s capital campaign. He no longer has any affiliation with the campaign nor does he serve in any other capacity for the university,” said Ed Blaguszewski, a spokesman for University of Massachusetts at Amherst.
Cosby got his master’s and doctorate in education from the university in the 1970s.
One of Cosby’s accusers worked at Temple.
In a report to police in her home province of Ontario, Canada, in January 2005, Andrea Constand said that in January 2004, when she was a 31-year-old staffer for the Temple women’s basketball team, she was at the comedian’s Cheltenham, Pennsylvania, home when Cosby provided her medication that made her dizzy. She told police she later woke up to find her bra undone and her clothes in disarray.
Though no charges were filed, Cosby settled a civil suit with Constand that alleged 13 Jane Does had similar stories.
One of those Jane Does is now talking publicly about her ordeal.
Donna Motsinger, 73, said she worked at a restaurant in Sausalito, California, that was popular with celebrities in the early 1970s. She met Cosby there, and said he asked her to his show. She accepted.
“I was so young, so innocent, I was so impressed that somebody so famous wanted to go out with me. My goodness, I was over the moon,” Motsinger told CNN.
She said they stopped for gas and had an alcoholic beverage. By the time they got to the theater, she felt sick and asked for an aspirin. Motsinger said Cosby gave her what she thought was an aspirin.
“The next thing I remember from that minute on, after that there was some conversation and laughing and stuff, but then the next thing I remember and I don’t know the time between the aspirin and this time but the next thing I remember I had become conscious in the limousine, he’s next to me, he’s got his hands on me and I look up I see the lights of the city. I could see it clear as a bell in my mind right now, the lights of the city coming back and it was all blurry, kind of the lights, and I passed out again,” she said.
Motsinger continued: “The next thing I knew I woke up the next morning in my own bed, in my own house with all my clothes off except for my underwear and I didn’t tell a soul.”
At least 17 women have been speaking to various media outlets accusing Cosby of sexual misconduct, including 14 women who CNN has either spoken to, who have spoken on camera about their allegations, or whose public allegations have been addressed by Cosby’s attorney.
Cosby attorney John Schmitt sent a blanket denial of several allegations that have cropped up recently, but later amended his denial to say he wasn’t referring to Constand, who resolved her differences “to the mutual satisfaction of Mr. Cosby and Ms. Constand years ago.”
‘It’s not gonna end here’
Another of Cosby’s accusers spoke to CNN on Monday.
Janice Dickinson, a former supermodel, says Cosby assaulted her in 1982 after the two had dinner in Lake Tahoe. She alleges he gave her a pill and a glass of red wine shortly before she passed out.
When asked what went through her mind when she heard there were other women accusing Cosby, Dickinson said: “I am here for those women … I want to validate these women and I want to applaud them for their courage.”
At one point in the interview, she broke down in tears and covered her face.
“But I’m strong, and I’m gonna stand on my own two feet and I’m gonna tell my side of the story, and it’s not gonna end here,” she said.
Singer, Cosby’s attorney, has said that Dickinson’s allegation is a “fabricated lie,” and that it contradicts what she wrote in her autobiography and what she said during a 2002 New York Observer interview.
The latest allegations come amid the revelation that Cosby gave an exclusive interview to the National Enquirer in exchange for the publication not printing the story of Beth Ferrier.
Ferrier told media outlets in 2005 that she met Cosby in Denver in the mid-’80s. He mentored her for a time, but one night, she said, he gave her a drugged cappuccino.
“I woke up in my car in the parking lot with my clothes all a mess,” she said. “I wondered, I still wonder, ‘What did he do with me? Why was my bra unhooked?'”
The two later conducted an “on-and-off consensual affair” that lasted several years, she told People magazine.
At the time, Cosby’s publicist told People that he had no comment.
“I would give them an exclusive story, my words” Cosby said, according to court records of a 2005 deposition, talking about what his understanding was with the National Enquirer.
“What would they give you in return?” he was asked.
“They would not print the story of — print Beth’s story,” Cosby said.
The transcript continues: “Did you ever think that if Beth Ferrier’s story was printed in the National Enquirer that that would make the public believe that maybe Andrea (Constand) was also telling the truth?”
“Exactly,” Cosby replied.
CNN’s Dana Ford, Ronni Berke and Todd Leopold contributed to this report.