Beverly Johnson on her Bill Cosby allegations: Why I'm sharing my story

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By Eun Kyung Kim

Supermodel Beverly Johnson, the latest woman to accuse Bill Cosby of drugging her, told TODAY's Tamron Hall that she's speaking out about the incident at the comedian's home nearly 30 years ago in an effort to empower other victims as well as to take "my power back."

An attorney for Cosby had no comment on these latest allegations. The comedian has steadfastly denied sexually assaulting the string of women who have come forward with accusations.

Johnson, the first black American model to grace the cover of Vogue, joins more than two dozen other women who have made similar accusations against the comedic legend. She details her encounter in a Vanity Fair essay, and in an interview with Tamron, she explains why she went public about the night she went to Cosby's home in 1986 thinking she was auditioning for him.

"This is bigger than Bill Cosby. This is about women and violence against women," she said. "This is about women finding their voice. I feel that Cosby took my power that evening and that I took my power back."

Johnson described the fallout of her night with Cosby, saying:

  • She initially kept the incident a secret from her daughter. "I told her what would you tell your daughter, my granddaughter, if she ever came to her and said, 'Hey, mom, I have been drugged.' What would you do? And she said 'Mom, you are doing the right thing. I support you. I love you.'"

  • She kept quiet about her story because of Cosby’s status: "At the time I felt that it would hurt my career. Most certainly he was a very powerful man."