However, judges are allowed to issue sentences beyond those guidelines. In addition, he will have to undergo counseling for the rest of his life and report to authorities every three months, according to The Associated Press.
Constand smiled when Cosby's sentence was read.
Bill Cosby arrived in court on Tuesday to learn whether he will go to prison for sexual assault as his sentencing hearing in a Pennsylvania courtroom concludes, capping a remarkable fall from grace for the comedian once known as "America's Dad".
Cosby's guilty verdict stemmed from a 2004 incident in which Constand, now 45 and a former college and Canadian national team basketball player, was sexually assaulted by Cosby.
Bill Cosby being taken away in handcuffs today at the Montgomery County Courthouse in Pennsylvania. "He robbed me of my health and vitality, my open nature and my trust in myself and others", she wrote in a five-page impact statement.
The sentence comes after O'Neill, who oversaw both of Cosby's trials, ruled earlier Tuesday that Cosby is a "sexually violent predator".
Former model Janice Dickinson, who was among the 60 or so women who have come forward to accuse Cosby of drugging and violating them over the past five decades, looked at Cosby and said: "Here's the last laugh pal". She was one of five "prior bad acts" witnesses, all of whom testified at the criminal trial that Cosby had incapacitated and then assaulted them without their consent. He will also be required to pay a fine and court costs.
"Nobody is above the law because of where they live, who they are, wealth, fame, celebrity or even philanthropy", the judge said. Steele said, his voice rising. "The jury thinks otherwise".
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During his sentencing, Cosby's legal team argued that his age and blindness should be taken into account, and tried to whittle his sentence down from years of jail time to house arrest. "The courageous survivors who spoke out and the diligent prosecutors made his trial and conviction possible", Ossorio says. "Not saying Mr. Cosby is Jesus, but we know what this country has done to black men for centuries". His lawyers had asked that Cosby be placed under house arrest, citing his age and frailty.
A petition had been submitted on Monday, urging commerce officials to scrub Cosby's name off for good after numerous attacks on the star - including one where the words "serial rapist" were scrawled on it.
Women's rights attorney Gloria Allred reacts to the sentencing of Billy Cosby on September 25, 2018.
Cosby's lawyers had fought the "sexually violent predator" designation, arguing that Pennsylvania's sex-offender law remains unconstitutional despite several revisions.
"The victims can not be un-raped".
Montgomery County Judge Steven O'Neill said during sentencing: "It is time for justice".