Entertainment

COSBY SHOW ACTRESS WHO STAGED TOPLESS PROTEST SAYS IT WAS TO MAKE BILL COSBY FEEL ‘UNCOMFORTABLE’

39 year old Nicolle Rochelle, former Cosby Show actress who was arrested after protesting topless at the actor’s re-trial on Monday, says she simply disgraced the comedian to make him feel “uncomfortable.”

In her words : “He is a man who has disempowered women’s bodies for decades. It doesn’t seem to be recognized, “The case is being publicized with this narrative of race. He’s being painted as the victim. I wanted to emphasize that this is about rape. I wanted to make him uncomfortable and to make people think about women’s bodies.”

NORRISTOWN, PA – MAY 24: Bill Cosby departs the Montgomery County Courthouse after a preliminary hearing, May 24, 2016, in Norristown, Pennsylvania. Cosby was ordered to stand trial on sexual assault charges after a hearing that hinged on a decade-old police report. (Photo by Matt Rourke-Pool/Getty Images)


Rochelle appeared on four episodes of The Cosby Show under the name Nicole Leach between 1990 and 1992. She was arrested and charged with disorderly conduct after protesting outside of the Pennsylvania courthouse where Cosby’s sexual assault retrial began on Monday.

The actress had the words “Women’s Lives Matter” as well as the names of some of the 80-year-old actor’s accusers written across her naked chest.

According to Rochelle, “Of course, I have no idea what Bill Cosby was thinking but I would hope that he stops for a minute and think about his own truth. At the moment, 61 women aren’t allowed to testify against him. That’s pretty appalling. The very least I could do is lend my body to this cause.”

As for whether she ever noticed anything strange or untoward on the set of The Cosby Show, Rochelle says it was always a very family friendly atmosphere.

“The protest wasn’t about me knowing him, but there’s a part of me that feels betrayed because I can understand what the victims were feeling. Like, that could have been me, I could’ve undergone the abuse as well,” she says.

Rochelle said in an earlier statement to PEOPLE, “My action today was first and foremost an action lead by the group I joined in Europe about a year-and-half ago called Femen. Femen is an international Women’s movement of topless female activists painted with slogans and our mission is protesting the patriarchy and reclaiming our bodies.”

More than 50 women have accused Cosby of drugging and/or sexually assaulting them decades ago, but he has denied all the allegations.

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