Bill Cosby, who has been accused of drugging and molesting more than 50 women, went out to dinner in Philadelphia on Wednesday and made an unusual request.
“Please don’t put me on #MeToo,” the 80-year-old Cosby told a reporter from the Inquirer. “I just shook your hand like a man.”
“#MeToo” is a social media movement that launched last year in wake of sexual misconduct accusations made against celebrities such as Harvey Weinstein. Women have been encouraged to use the hashtag to speak out against inappropriate behavior.
Members of the media were present as Cosby dined at Ristorante La Veranda and schmoozed with friends and fans.
“He had a taste for some Italian food, so we decided to fly down to Philadelphia,” Cosby spokesman Andrew Wyatt told the Inquirer.
Cosby had dinner with childhood pal Ed Ford.
“The feel of this city at this time for me with the snow … you know, it’s just a great, good, crisp feel,” Cosby said, according to the Inquirer.
When asked if he was up to anything in the city this week, Cosby said, “yes. And you can’t come,” according to the newspaper.
Cosby became known as “America’s Dad” after starring on “The Cosby Show” from 1984 to 1992. He has denied the sexual assault allegations made against him.
He currently lives in Massachusetts. His new trial on charges he drugged and sexually assaulted a woman in 2004 was supposed to begin last year, but that has been delayed.
“We’re ready,” Cosby said as he left the restaurant, according to the Inquirer.
A mistrial was declared in June when jurors could not reach a verdict.