A 57-year-old Florida woman claimed Thursday that she was drugged and raped by comedian Bill Cosby in 1976, when she was 19, according to media reports. Therese Serignese’s claim is the latest in a string of sexual abuse allegations made against the actor in recent weeks.
Serignese, who works as a nurse in Boca Raton, revealed that Cosby gave her two pills when the two were alone following a show in Las Vegas, and later forced himself on her, The Associated Press (AP) reported. She also reportedly said that she did not speak up about the incident earlier because she was young and believed that she would be further humiliated by talking about the incident. Cosby has not personally responded to any of the rape allegations made against him in the last few days.
Three other women have made similar allegations against the 77-year-old actor in the last few weeks. Janice Dickinson, Joan Tarshis and Barbara Bowman have all claimed that Cosby drugged and raped them decades ago.
Cosby’s attorney Martin Singer issued a statement late Thursday denying the allegations made by the three women.
"We are dealing with these people who are coming out of the woodwork with unsubstantiated or fabricated stories about our client," Singer reportedly said. "People coming out of nowhere with this sort of inane yarn is what happens in media-driven feeding frenzy.”
Serignese, whose claim was not addressed by Singer, also claimed that, following the incident, she lived with Cosby in Las Vegas for some time, but did not say for how long, AP reported. Serignese also claimed that, after the incident, Cosby had sent her nearly $10,000 and that she later received another payment of $5,000 from his management company, the William Morris Agency, AP reported.
Serignese also reportedly said that she submitted a statement, which had the details of her claims, to Philadelphia police in January 2005. Serignese added that she was also ready to testify on behalf of Andrea Constand, another accuser who filed a civil suit against Cosby, and later settled the case out of court.
The latest spate of allegations has led to the cancellation of several of Cosby's shows. TV Land on Thursday dropped reruns of “The Cosby Show” from its lineup while NBC said that it was scrapping an upcoming sitcom starring the comedian.
However, three of Cosby’s live shows will take place as scheduled in November, venue organizers said Thursday, Reuters reported. The actor also reportedly performed on Thursday at a small theater at the Atlantis resort in the Bahamas.