Malcolm-Jamal Warner is breaking his silence on the Bill Cosby sexual assault scandal. Warner played Cosby’s son on The Cosby Show in the late 80s.
Malcolm-Jamal once told CBS News, “the greatest advantages we had on the show growing up was being exposed to Mr. Cosby.” Even after 35 women have come forward to accuse Cosby of sexual assault, Warner still stands by his former mentor (kind of.)
In an interview with Billboard, Warner talked about what it’s like to hear the troubling news.
“He’s one of my mentors, and he’s been very influential and played a big role in my life as a friend and mentor. Just as it’s painful to hear any woman talk about sexual assault, whether true or not, it’s just as painful to watch my friend and mentor go through this.”
Malcolm went on to say, “I can’t really speak on any of the allegations because obviously, I was not there. The Bill Cosby I know has been great to me and great for a lot of people. What he’s done for comedy and television has been legendary and history-making. What he’s done for the black community and education has been invaluable. That’s the Bill Cosby I know. I can’t speak on the other stuff.”
Warner played Theodore “Theo” Huxtable on the hit TV show from 1984 to 1992.
Other members of the Huxtable family have been hesitantly speaking out for comedian. Phylicia Rashad said that the scandal was destroying Cosby’s legacy, but wouldn’t say if she thought he was innocent.
Rashad explained, “I can’t speak to those things and wouldn’t want to.”
According to People, Keshia Knight Pulliam, who was the sister of Malcolm-Jamal Warner’s character, was a little bit more forceful in defending her fictional father.
“We’re still in America and you’re innocent until proven guilty of any crimes.”
The scandal started in 2005 when Tamara Green accused Cosby of giving her date rape pills and then assaulting her in the 1970s, but it didn’t gain momentum until about three months ago.
In November last year, Hannibal Buress called Cosby a rapist in a stand-up routine that was captured on video. That video was uploaded and went viral, trending until women started coming forward to say that they were raped by the comedian.
Although many have spoken out about the rape allegations, Malcolm-Jamal Warner gives a unique perspective as a person who worked with Cosby for so many years.
[Image Credit: Sean Coon/Wikimedia Commons]