FACT CHECK: Was Bill Cosby Released From Prison After All Charges Against Him Were Dropped?

Brad Sylvester | Fact Check Editor

An image shared on Facebook claims comedian Bill Cosby was released from prison after all charges against him were dropped.

Verdict: False

Cosby has not been released from prison and there is no evidence the charges against him have been dropped.

Fact Check:

Cosby, a comedian and star of “The Cosby Show,” was convicted in 2018 of aggravated indecent assault and sentenced to three to 10 years in prison. Now, an image shared on Facebook shows a thumbnail of a YouTube video titled, “Bill Cosby All Charges Dropped & Thanks Jesse Jackson For His Early Release.”

“Bill Cosby is a free man,” reads the post’s caption. “Thanks to the good bruh Jesse Jackson.” (RELATED: Did Trump Tweet That He Is ‘Considering A Full Pardon’ For Bill Cosby?)

Charges against Cosby have not been dropped, however, and he is still serving his sentence in jail. Maria Bivens, a spokeswoman for the Pennsylvania Department of Corrections, confirmed that Cosby has not yet been released.

“He is still in PA DOC custody at SCI Phoenix and nothing has changed,” said Bivens in an email to Check Your Fact when asked about the Facebook image.

Had Cosby been released or the charges against him been dropped, major news outlets likely would have reported on it, yet none appear to have done so. There is likewise no mention of his alleged release on his social media accounts.

The YouTube video referenced in the Facebook image shows a slideshow of various images of Cosby while a narrator seemingly reads a December 2020 USA Today article titled, “Bill Cosby thanks Jesse Jackson for calling for his release from prison due to COVID-19 threat.” The article recounts Jackson’s efforts to have Cosby released from prison due to the spread of COVID-19, but mentions nothing about Cosby being released or the charges against him being dropped.

While the information read off in the video is factual, its title is not, which has led some social media users to erroneously believe Cosby has been released from jail.

Brad Sylvester

Fact Check Editor
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