Two years after Bill Cosby was stripped of scores of honors following a rush of sex-assault accusations, he lost another one on Friday when leaders of the University of Missouri-Columbia voted to revoke his honorary degree.
The move by the university’s Board of Curators, at the urging of staff and faculty leaders, follows similar moves made by an estimated 20-to 25 schools, according to a statement issued by the university. System President Mun Choi also urged revocation, citing allegations that Cosby had sexually assaulted women.
“Honorary degrees throughout the University of Missouri System are reserved for those who have ascended to the pinnacle of their fields while conducting themselves consistent with the university’s core values,” the statement said. “The evidence presented during the recent criminal trial indicated that (Cosby) engaged in behavior that is in direct conflict with the core values of the University of Missouri.”
Cosby was tried in Pennsylvania on three counts of aggravated indecent sexual assault stemming from an encounter with a former Temple University basketball official at his home outside Philadelphia in 2004. After an 11-day trial, including six days of testimony and 52 hours of deliberations over five days, the jury was unable to reach a unanimous verdict and a mistrial was declared on June 17. Prosecutors immediately announced they would seek to retry Cosby.
During the trial, Cosby’s own words in a police interview and a civil deposition detailed his multiple affairs and sexual behavior with young women he met throughout his Hollywood career, despite his image as a beloved comedian and “America’s Dad.”
Starting in October 2014, Cosby has been accused by five-dozen women of drugging and/or raping them in episodes dating back to the mid-1960s. Only one of those accusations reached a criminal court but…