Democrat Kevin Steele Wins District Attorney Race Where Decade-Old Bill Cosby Case Became Issue

Steele, the county's current first assistant district attorney, publicly criticized Republican Bruce L. Castor, Jr. for not prosecuting Bill Cosby in 2005

Photo: Christopher Dolan/The Times & Tribune/AP; Matt Rourke/AP

Democrat Kevin Steele won Tuesday’s election to become the next district attorney of Montgomery County, Pennsylvania, in a race in which a decade-old criminal case against entertainer Bill Cosby became a central issue.

Steele, the county’s current first assistant district attorney, was running against the county’s former district attorney, Republican Bruce L. Castor, Jr., who in 2005 decided not to prosecute Cosby, now 78, for allegedly drugging and sexually assaulting former Temple employee Andrea Constand at his Elkins Park, Pennsylvania, mansion in 2004.

Steele declined to comment to PEOPLE on the election, saying he was spending the day with his family, but told supporters at a victory party Tuesday night, “You made a choice to take it forward, to fight for victims, to fight for people who have been the subject of crimes,” according to The Philadelphia Inquirer

“And that is where I will continue to make a difference every day,” he added. “We’re going to take a great office and we’re going to make it greater.”

Castor thanked his supporters and offered his congratulations to Steele on his Facebook site late Tuesday night, noting he’d tried “one more time to pull the rabbit out of the hat.”

He added, “This time, the hat was simply out of rabbits.”

Republican Risa Vetri Ferman, the county’s current district attorney, won her race for county judge.

Monique Pressley, Cosby’s chief spokeswoman, did not immediately comment to PEOPLE on the election results.

On October 20, Steele released a television ad criticizing Castor for his decision not to prosecute Cosby. Castor responded with an ad of his own questioning why Steele hadn’t taken action in his capacity as the county’s first assistant district attorney.

On October 26, Constand filed a federal defamation lawsuit against Castor for comments he made about her on his Twitter and Facebook sites and to other media.

Dolores Troiani, Constand’s attorney, also revealed to PEOPLE details about the recently reopened case, saying Constand had been interviewed by five detectives in the Montgomery County district attorney’s office in August and that other witnesses had been re-interviewed as well.

The following day, Troaini told PEOPLE that Constand would withdraw from the investigation should Castor win the election.

Now that Steele is the county’s next top prosecutor, “Of course she’ll cooperate with the investigation,” Troaini tells PEOPLE. “Her issue was with Castor, no one else.”

And Troiani’s reaction to Castor’s loss?

“I m dying to meet him at his deposition” Troiani says.

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