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Kristina Ruehli, who alleges she is the first known sexual assault victim of Bill Cosby, is reportedly withdrawing her defamation against him. The Washington Post reports that despite a Massachusetts federal judge blocking Cosby’s attempt to have Ruehli’s case dismissed, she ultimately made the decision to drop her case against the comedic legend. Ruehli alleges Cosby drugged and assaulted her in 1965.
In an interview with the Post, the 72-year-old New Hampshire woman believes she already made her point and succeeded her goal of bringing more attention to the allegations against Cosby, who has been accused by more than 50 different women of rape, drug facilitated sexual assault, and sexual battery. Ruehli’s case also had an undisclosed deposition that had a testimony from a former boyfriend who was by her side within days of the alleged sexual assault in 1965. Ruehli reportedly told him everything that happened.
It is expected that Ruehli’s withdraw of her lawsuit will decrease the legal pressure on Cosby, who is in the middle of various lawsuits ranging from defamation to sexual assault. He is currently going to trial in Pennsylvania on criminal charges of allegedly drugging and sexually assaulting Andrea Constand, a former Temple University women’s basketball official, in 2004.
Ruehli says she spent $80,000 of her own money on the defamation lawsuit. She was also listed as one of the dozens of anonymous accusers when Constand filed a civil suit in March 2005.
“This is now the second of these defamation cases that has been dismissed, either by a Court or by a party,” a Cosby spokesman said in a statement to the Post. “We hope and expect that there will be more, and we look forward to fighting any that are not dismissed, before a jury of our peers. For those in the media who accepted every allegation raised without question or evaluation, they need to answer the well-known question with respect to Mr. Cosby, ‘Which office do I go to get my reputation back?’”