Cosby puts career on hold In wake of groping allegations, he cancels two more public appearances

By NICOLE WEISENSEE EGAN COMEDIAN BILL COSBY postponed three scheduled appearances in Florida this weekend, in the wake of groping allegations made against him by a former Temple University employee. He had already postponed a town hall meeting in Cleveland that had been scheduled for this past Thursday evening. Walter Phillips Jr., Cosby's attorney, said the allegations "may" have had something to do with the postponements. "I think he just doesn't feel right about appearing on a public stage these days, when these allegations are out there and there's been so much media coverage of it," said Phillips. Overall, Cosby is handling the publicity storm well, he said. "He's got such a wonderful sense of humor that it still comes through when you talk to him but he's obviously very much down and upset by what has transpired over the last few days," Phillips said. Cosby hired him Thursday, the day the story broke in the media, Phillips said. He has never worked for Cosby before, he said. Phillips has called the allegations "bizarre" and "preposterous" and pointed out that the alleged victim waited a year before reporting it to authorities. She has remained holed up with her family near Toronto but yesterday the woman's father told NBC-10, which sent a reporter to Toronto, why she waited. "Sometimes it takes a long time to build up the courage, especially if the person is universal and when a person is very famous," her father said. "He was very good friends with my daughter. " The man described his daughter as "a very honest and decent person" and said he and his wife went with her when she reported the alleged sexual assault to Durham Regional Police Services near Toronto last week. "As a family we cried over it," her father told the television station off-camera. Authorities remained tight-lipped about the criminal probe yesterday. Sgt. Paul McCurbin of Durham Regional Police Services would only confirm that the 31-year-old female came to them on Jan. 13 and reported an allegation of sexual assault that took place in the United States. Her allegations eventually landed in the lap of the Cheltenham Township Police Department, McCurbin said. He would not even confirm that Bill Cosby was the accused. Phillips said no one from law enforcement has asked to interview his client yet. Cosby was scheduled for two appearances in Tallahassee today and one in Fort Lauderdale tomorrow, said David Brokaw, Cosby's publicist. Cosby has been traveling the country talking about problems in poor, black communities. Phillips said he's received some e-mails from people offering support to his client. "One was from someone in Arkansas and one was from someone in Texas, an ordained minister," he said. "She thought my characterization of the allegations as 'preposterous' was aptly put. Her prayers are out for him because she's a longtime fan of his because of what he's done for education and the community. " Phillips said he passed along the good wishes to Cosby when they spoke yesterday. "He was very appreciative," Phillips said. *

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