Disgraced actor Bill Cosby’s star on the Hollywood Walk Of Fame will not be removed despite him being jailed for sexual assault, the organisation in charge of the LA tourist attraction has confirmed.
The Hollywood Chamber of Commerce said that while it is “regrettable” when celebrities’ personal lives do not live up to “public standards and expectations”, the stars mark professional achievements and are permanent fixtures.
Cosby has just started a prison sentence of up to 10 years after being labelled a “sexually violent predator” by a judge in Pennsylvania.
The 81-year-old – the first celebrity of the #MeToo era to be jailed – was convicted in April of drugging and molesting Temple University employee Andrea Constand at his Philadelphia home 14 years ago.
His defence says it will appeal against the conviction and spokesman Andrew Wyatt has hit out at the trial, describing it as “the most sexist and racist” in US history.
Known to millions as “America’s Dad” for his role in The Cosby Show, the comedian and actor saw his star unveiled on Hollywood Boulevard in 1977.
Following his sentencing on Tuesday, a spokeswoman for the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce said it would remain in place.
“The Hollywood Walk of Fame is a historical record of entertainment figures past and present,” the spokeswoman said.
“Once installed, the stars become part of the historic fabric of the Walk of Fame, a ‘designated historic cultural landmark’, and are intended to be permanent.
“The stars only commemorate the recipient’s professional accomplishments.
“It is regrettable when the personal lives of inductees do not measure up to public standards and expectations; however, the Hollywood Chamber Of Commerce does not remove stars from the Walk Of Fame.”
There are more than 2,600 celebrity stars stretching along pavements in downtown Hollywood to make up the Walk Of Fame. Whoever nominates a celebrity for the honour usually pays the $40,000 fee to install and maintain the star.
Cosby’s has been vandalised twice, with someone writing over it earlier this month.
US President Donald Trump’s star is another that has been targeted – most recently in July, when it was smashed with a pickaxe.
There have also been calls for Kevin Spacey’s star, which he received in 1999, to be removed following allegations of sexual assault.