HIS Hollywood career and good-guy image in ruins, an 81-year-old Bill Cosby has been sentenced to three to 10 years behind bars for drugging and sexually assaulting a woman.
The punishment handed down all but completed the dizzying, late-in-life fall from grace for the comedian, former TV star and breaker of racial barriers, who was led from the court in handcuffs.
Cosby is the first celebrity of the “MeToo” era to be sent to prison.
“It is time for justice,” Montgomery County Judge Steven O’Neill said in sentencing on Tuesday.
“Mr Cosby, this has all circled back to you. The time has come.”
The judge quoted from victim Andrea Constand’s own statement to the court, in which she said Cosby took her “beautiful, young spirit and crushed it”.
Cosby declined the opportunity to speak before the sentence came down, and afterward he sat smiling, laughing and chatting with his defence team.
His wife of 54 years, Camille, was not in court.