This April, a jury found Bill Cosby guilty of drugging and raping Andrea Constand in 2004. The only case among more than 60 women who accused the fallen comedian of sexual assault for which the statute of limitations had not run out, Constand, a once promising basketball star, put herself on the line to take down the serial predator. In 2015 she even came out publicly as a lesbian to challenge her attacker’s assertion that he knew how to read the desires of the women he assaulted. This Friday, she spoke publicly for the first time in 13 years about the assault in a Dateline special entitled "Bringing Down Bill Cosby: Andrea Constand Speaks."
Constand, who became friendly with the former sitcom star when she worked as an employee of the basketball program at his alma mater, Temple University, told Dateline’s Kate Snow that her case against him was never about money, although her initial accusation that he’d sexually assaulted her ended in a settlement for an undisclosed amount resulting in Cosby’s attorneys painting her as unstable and money-hungry at the recent trial despite her life and career having been thrown into upheaval after the rape.
"This has never been about money. This has been about justice. I wasn't talking money. I was talking police and justice," Constand told Snow about standing up to Cosby.
Immediately following the assault, which she told Snow occurred after he’d handed her three blue pills he said were “her friends” and that she took because she trusted him.
Regarding the assault, she said she became dizzy after swallowing the pills. And so Cosby moved her to the couch where he began to rape her.
“Move your hands. Kick. Can you do anything? I don't want this. Why is this person doing this?' And me not being able to react in any specific way," she said was going through her mind although she was unable to speak or move. "I was limp. I was a limp noodle."
"He said nothing that I could recall. I was in and out of consciousness. I was crying out inside, in my throat and my mind, for this to stop, and I couldn't do anything,” she added.
Constand also shared that she did not immediately tell anyone about the assault, the reasons for which she explained on Dateline.
“I didn't think anybody would believe me. It was Bill Cosby. It was Dr. Huxtable," Constand said. “I thought I was the only person that he did this to. Who’s going to believe me?”
As it turned out she was one of the dozens of women he’d assaulted. She told Snow she believes he is “sick” but that she had to find a way to forgive him.
"If I did not forgive him, I wouldn't have peace," she said.
Constand, who suffered from flashbacks and scream-filled nightmares following the attack (according to her mother Gianna Constand), first filed suit against Cosby in 2005. She alleged that he had drugged and raped her in 2004, which ended in a settlement for an undisclosed amount that was bound by a confidentiality agreement. Cosby’s attorneys accused her of breaking the agreement through two vague tweets in 2015 in which she simply wrote “Yes,” and “Sir!” Despite Cosby’s attempts to silence her through his attorneys, she held her line and fought back.
Because Constand had the only case for which the statute of limitations had not run out, she was left battling in a Pennsylvania courtroom not only for herself but on behalf of all of his accusers last summer, and again this spring in the case where he was finally found guilty. Several other women he’d allegedly assaulted were allowed to testify in the recent trial but his conviction turned on Constand’s case.
While Constand’s case ultimately brought down the serial predator, on Dateline she credited all of the women who came forward about the assaults with helping to bring him to justice.
"I'm not alone. It's a collective consciousness,” Constand told Snow. “And so I would rather say we brought down Bill Cosby, but I just had the shoes on."
Cosby's sentencing is set for September.