Cosby's show nixed in Washington state after sex assault claims

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[November 25, 2014]  By Piya Sinha-Roy and Eric Kelsey

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Embattled comedian Bill Cosby's show in Yakima, Washington state, has been canceled, venue organizers said Monday, in the latest of several cancellations following decades-old sexual assault allegations that have surfaced in recent weeks.

The Capitol Theatre said all ticket holders to the show, scheduled for Saturday, would receive refunds and the show has been postponed indefinitely.

Foxwoods Resort Casino in Connecticut also said they had indefinitely postponed a performance by the 77-year-old Cosby, scheduled for Jan. 31.

The comedian has not directly addressed the accusations but his attorneys have said they were "discredited" and "defamatory."

Cosby's publicist did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the most recent cancellations.

More than a dozen women have come forward in recent weeks with allegations that Cosby sexually assaulted decades ago, and in some cases, drugged them.

Therese Serignese, a Florida woman, said Cosby assaulted her in 1976. Model Janice Dickinson, the most high-profile accuser, alleged in an interview with the "Entertainment Tonight" TV program that Cosby had sexually assaulted her in 1982.

The actor's sudden fall from grace has jolted generations of Americans who knew him as an actor who broke race barriers on TV over the last 50 years, most notably as the admired father, Dr. Cliff Huxtable, on the hit NBC comedy, "The Cosby Show."

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With NBC and Netflix also dropping projects with the comedian, the allegations have threatened Cosby's wholesome public image and future in show business.

Still, amid the allegations, Cosby performed a show in Florida last week without incident, and told a local paper ahead of the performance that he does not have to "answer to innuendos."

The show went ahead despite the cancellation of the comedian's Las Vegas performance this week and four other shows in Arizona, Illinois, South Carolina and Washington state next year.

Cosby has two more shows on Dec. 6 in Tarrytown, New York, that are planned to go ahead, and 28 performances scheduled through May next year.

(This version of the story corrects four shows from five in paragraph 11)

(Editing by Bernadette Baum)

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