Stephanie Fakih, founder of Rights First Law, recently discussed the laws involved in the Bill Cosby sexual assault allegations. She explained that, “[w]hen it comes to allegations of rape or sexual assault, a victim has two avenues to pursue — criminal prosecution, where the alleged rapist, if found guilty by a judge or jury, faces incarceration, or a civil lawsuit where the victim alleges ‘damages’ for the rape or sexual assault in the form a civil lawsuit for assault or intentional infliction of emotional distress. In return for the damages, the alleged rapist, if found guilty by a judge or jury, must pay the victim’s damages—in an amount also determined by a judge or jury”.

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