At a crowded jazz club on Monday night, comedian and alleged sexual predator Bill Cosby had his first public appearance in Philadelphia where he sang, scatted, and shared jokes with the audience. The video clip, shared on Twitter by WHYY reporter Bobby Allyn, enraged many.
A refresher: In 2017, Cosby was on trial after he was accused of sexual assault by 58 women. The trial resulted in a hung jury in Pennsylvania, meaning that the jury was in a deadlock and couldn't reach a definitive verdict in the required time. The alleged incidents spanned over a few decades but the recurring theme in most of the accusations was that Cosby had allegedly drugged the victims prior to abusing them.
In response to the accusations, Cosby has denied all allegations of sexual abuse and has even sued seven of the accusers for defamation. One of the main accusers, Andrea Constand, accused Cosby of sexually assaulting her in 2004, but Cosby responded to her accusation by claiming he had consensual sex with her.
Now, Cosby is set for a retrial in April. Prosecutors have asked that 19 women who have accused Cosby of sexual assault be allowed to testify against him.
In his first appearance in public, Cosby infuriated not only Twitter users but also Constand's lawyer, Dolores Troiani — "Right now the only thing I can say is the arrogance of this man leaves every decent person speechless," Troiani told NBC News. In the video clip, Cosby could be seen making his audience laugh and clap as he joked about old age among other things. He did not, however, mention the pending trial or the accusations against him.
On Twitter, one user said that it was "disgraceful"; it seemed to her that Cosby was "appealing to a possible jury pool audience." Another Twitter user simply asked, "Who the f*** let him in a club?" One Twitter user said, "Gross! Who the hell would pay to see #BillCosby anymore? Women should have been standing outside the club, making a list of patrons aka 'people to avoid at all costs.'"
Some just used a Family Guy vomiting gif to get their opinion across. From reactions calling the event "sick" to describing Cosby as "despicable" with "no soul [and] no shame," it was clear that Twitter wanted very little to do with Cosby's appearance at the Philly jazz club.
At the jazz club, Cosby reportedly played with the performing team by beating the drums. He also shared childhood tales with the audience and asked one of the performing band members' son if he knew who Cosby was. "I used to be a comedian," he told the boy. He exchanged jokes with the crowd for an hour and then left, according to NBC Philadelphia.
During the event, Cosby even joked about his blindness and said:
Let me tell you something about people talking to blind people, you sighted people. If you see a blind person walking into a pole or something, if you speak perfect English, there's a word called "Stop!" Not "Whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa!"
The comedian's repertoire with the public isn't new. Recently, Cosby invited media members to join him for lunch in Philadelphia.