Carla Ferrigno’s Experience Shows That Assault Affects Linger

Carla Ferrigno has added her story to a growing list of accusations against comedic entertainer Bill Cosby. Carla, wife of Lou Ferrigno of The Incredible Hulk fame, claims that Cosby grabbed her at a party and kissed her roughly.

Seventeen women, including Carla Ferrigno, have come forward to publicly accuse the famous comedian of various forms of sexual assault ranging from being kissed or groped to rape. Nearly all of the reports involve drugs or alcohol being pushed on the victims by Cosby. Many of the rapes happened to women who claimed to be completely incapacitated or rendered unconscious by pills or drinks given to them by the comic.

Cosby

Another common theme is the alleged victims ties to the entertainment community. The majority of the women were employed as actresses, writers, or models. A few were employees of talent agencies or clubs that did business with the actor. Carla Ferrigno was a Playboy Playmate at the time. Ferrigno believes that she was set up for the assault by a man that Cosby recruited to bring her to his house. After an evening out, the four (Carla and her date, Cosby and his wife) returned to Cosby’s home to play pool. Cosby’s wife went to bed and Carla’s date mysteriously disappeared.

“He was much bigger than me. Much bigger and he pulled me so hard and so rough. I had never been treated so roughly and he pulled me hard to him so hard. And then kissed me so hard, right in the mouth. No one has ever been that physically violent with me. I was stunned. I was frozen. I took all my body strength and used both of my arms to stop him and push him away from me. He was so forceful.”

Cosby’s attorney, Marty Singer, was very dismissive of Carla’s claims.

“This continuing pattern of attacks on Mr. Cosby have entered the realm of the ridiculous, with a purported ‘forceful kiss’ at a party in 1967, nearly 50 years ago, being treated as a current ‘news story,’ and grossly mischaracterized as a ‘sexual assault.’ This is utter nonsense.”

The trauma from sexual assaults can last a lifetime. In Carla’s case, an interaction that took place nearly half a century ago, left such an impression on her that she can still recall it with great detail. Ever year in the United States, over a quarter of a million people are sexually assaulted or raped. Nearly 60 percent of those rapes go unreported, and of the ones that are reported, only four percent of offenders are ever convicted. Rape survivors are violated, traumatized, and often feel very isolated. In instances where an alleged attacker has multiple victims, it’s not uncommon for them to start coming forward after one files initial charges. It’s this show of solidarity and protection for others that inspired Carla Ferrigno to speak up about her experience. Ferrigno refuses to sweep her memories under a rug anymore and encourages other women to come forward as well.

“This was inside of me my whole life and I didn’t like it. And every time I’d hear his name, I’d cringe…I want to address every woman in America to come forward so this sort of thing doesn’t happen again. Any woman who was hurt by this man needs to stand up and speak out against the insanity with the lawyers and the abuse. No more. No more.”

[Image courtesy of firstpersoncatbook.com]