Is Bill Cosby Being Put in the General Population and What Jobs Could He Work in Prison?

Bill Cosby

Bill Cosby | Mark Makela/Getty Images

The world watched as Bill Cosby was handcuffed and led away after being sentenced by a judge to serve three to 10 years in prison for sexual assault.

On Sept. 25, 2018, the man once known as “America’s Dad” became inmate NN7687 at SCI Phoenix, located in suburban Philadelphia. Now, the only questions that remain about the disgraced comedian are what his life will be like behind bars and if he will be put into the general population.

Last April, Cosby was convicted on three counts of felony aggravated indecent assault. Each count carried a potential sentence of 10 years, but the defense team and prosecutors agreed that the counts would be merged into one. On Tuesday, Judge Steven O’Neill handed down the sentence and denied a request for bail by Cosby’s lawyers.

The decision to put the actor away came after dozens of women accused him of drugging and assaulting them.

“For decades, the defendant has been able to hide his true self and hide his crimes using his fame and fortune,” said  Montgomery County District Attorney Kevin Steele. “He used his acting skills and his endearing personality to win over his victims and keep them silent. Finally, Bill Cosby has been unmasked, and we’ve seen the real man as he’s headed off to prison.”

SCI Phoenix will not be the 81-year-old’s permanent home. He will only be housed there until it is determined where he will serve the bulk of his sentence. His medical issues and overall safety will be taken into account before he is moved anywhere.

Steele said Cosby may end up in SCI Laurel Highlands, which is a state prison housing lower-risk inmates. It’s about 70 miles outside of Pittsburgh. According to its website, the facility is Pennsylvania’s provider for inmates with special needs, geriatric inmates, and those who require long-term care. However, it also houses a general prison population and has programs for sex offenders which Cosby would have to enter as he has been labeled a “sexually violent predator.”

His fate at a new facility remains to be seen but at SCI Phoenix Cosby spent his first night in his own cell without a cellmate. Officials though have said they would like to shift him into the general population.

“The long-term goal is for him to be placed in the general population to receive the programming required during his incarceration,” Corrections Secretary John Wetzel told Philly.com.

TMZ reported that even though Cosby is legally blind the Pennsylvania Dept. of Corrections said he could still work some odd jobs during his time at Phoenix. Those jobs could range from assisting infirm inmates or working in garment factories. He would be paid between $0.19 to $0.45 an hour, a far cry from the $84 million he made in the late ’80s. Before his stunning fall from grace, the TV personality was worth as much as $400 million.

Cosby’s attorneys have vowed to appeal his conviction.

Read more: Is Bill Cosby a Registered Sex Offender? What His Sentence Means

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