LOS ANGELES (AFP) - Three more women, including a former Mrs America, came forward on Wednesday to accuse comedian Bill Cosby of sexual assault.
They spoke at a news conference in Los Angeles, tearfully recalling their encounters with the disgraced comedian and how he allegedly abused them.
The three join dozens of other women who have come forward in recent months claiming sexual abuse by the television legend.
Lisa Christie, a former Mrs America, said she met Cosby when she was an 18-year-old aspiring model and actress, and for two years he flew her back and forth to New York and Buffalo but never tried anything as "he knew that I was a virgin and raised Christian". But then, she said, the comedian tried to pressure her into having sex.
When she refused his advances, she said, he warned her she would never make it in the business unless she slept with him.
"I responded, 'Shame on you Mr Father Figure of America, your kids are older than I am,'" she said.
Pamela Abeyta said she met Cosby in 1979, when she was 25 and hoping to appear in Playboy magazine.
She said he invited her to Las Vegas where she stayed in a separate bedroom in his penthouse hotel suite.
She said she believed someone put something in her drink when she attended a show with Cosby and his friends. She said she passed out at some point and woke up in his bed.
Sharon Van Ert said she met Cosby when she worked as a waitress at a California jazz club in 1976 and he offered to walk her to her car one day.
She said she remembered him "getting fresh" with her and rubbing her leg before she passed out.
"The next thing I remember was waking up in my car, my head hanging down from the seat, alone," she said. "I knew I was drugged because I threw up and I never threw up or drank too much."
The women's testimonies at the offices of celebrity attorney Gloria Allred come just a week before the disgraced comedian is set to give a deposition in a separate sexual assault case.
The case involves Judy Huth, who alleges Cosby sexually assaulted her at the Playboy Mansion in Los Angeles when she was 15.
Allred, who is also representing Huth, said that she is fighting a motion by Cosby's attorneys to prevent public release of the deposition.
Cosby's attorneys have repeatedly denied any wrongdoing by the 78-year-old.
The statute of limitations prevents most of the women who have accused the comedian of sexual assault from taking legal action. The case for which he is being deposed may go forward as the alleged crime took place when the woman was a minor.