KEY POINTS

  • Lawyers for Bill Cosby, 82 and blind, want to put him under house arrest
  • A correction officer in his facility was tested positive for COVID-19
  • The comedian is serving a three to 10-year sentence for rape

The lawyers for Bill Cosby are considering filing a petition to have the former "America's Dad" out of prison early. The famous comedian, convicted as a sex offender in 2018, is reportedly apprehensive that he could be exposed to coronavirus.

Reports revealed that a correction officer at the SCI Phoenix in Montgomery County in Pennsylvania, where Cosby is serving his prison time, has tested positive for COVID-19. The staff and prisoners are allegedly fearful that the virus is spreading in the facility.

Andrew Wyatt, the spokesperson for Cosby, told the press that there are concerns for the former TV star's health.

Bill Cosby Bill Cosby is seen leaving the Montgomery County Courthouse on the first day of sentencing in his sexual assault trial in Norristown, Pennsylvania, on Sept. 24, 2018. Photo: Getty Images/Mark Makela

"The reason: Mr. Cosby is elderly and blind -- and always needs to be escorted around the prison by support service inmates, known as Certified Peer Specialists (CPI)," Wyatt said in a statement.

"Those inmates could fall victim to the Coronavirus and easily spread the disease to Mr. Cosby as they wheel him around in a wheelchair," he added. "Among their duties, the inmates bring Mr. Cosby to the infirmary for his doctor appointments and clean his cell."

Wyatt said that it's only a matter of time before Cosby could be exposed in a confined space like his prison cell. As of press time, the comedian has not yet been tested for COVID-19, but his blood pressure is reportedly spiking.

Lawyers for Cosby said that he could serve the rest of his three to 10-year sentence under house arrest with an ankle bracelet. They argue that Cosby is not a danger to the community since he is elderly and blind.

The disgraced actor owns a 9,000-square-foot mansion in Pennsylvania. Before he was sent to prison, Cosby was also under house arrest, with his wife Camille looking after him.

Last week, the Pennsylvania Department of Corrections improved its precautions against the coronavirus spread by restricting family visits, screening staff for COVID-19 symptoms, and providing additional soaps for the inmates.

Some 10 percent of Pennsylvania's prisoners are geriatric, but John Wetzel, the state's correction secretary, said they have "zero discretion" for inmate releases as the process is not going to be simple.

Cosby and his lawyers filed a different motion two months ago for his early release. He was found guilty of raping a Temple University employee in 2004.