While the statute of limitations seems to have expired on criminal charges against Bill Cosby, who has been accused by more than two dozen women of sexual misconduct, the sitcom star will have to answer to one of his accusers in court.
Hearings began on Thursday in a defamation case brought on by Therese Serignese, a Florida woman suing Cosby for defamation, who claims her reputation was destroyed after she was branded a liar by the comedian's representatives when she came forward with sexual assault allegations.
“It hurts to be called the things that I have been called,” the Associated Press reports the 58-year-old nurse as saying after the hearing, which was the first since the lawsuit was filed in December. “I take pride in my word. I’m an honest person. I came forward with statements of truth. I expect Mr. Cosby to be an honest person as well.”
The lawsuit focuses on the defamation allegations and not the assault allegations.
The suit also includes two other women as plaintiffs — Tamara Green and Linda Traitz — who also claim they have been slandered by Cosby’s representatives after coming forward with allegations.
Cosby's lawyers argued that the Cosby Show star was acting in self defense when he slammed the women in statements through his lawyers. He adds that he felt his character was under attack. Cosby was not present at the hearing Thursday, and his lawyers declined to comment. The women seek unspecified monetary damages.
(Photo: Gerardo Mora/Getty Images)