Actress Sunni Welles, who accused Bill Cosby of sexual assault, has died aged 72 after a battle with lung cancer.
The musician and performer died on Monday in Downey, California, her son Shaun O’Banion confirmed to Variety.
During her career, Welles became friends with Elvis Presley while she toured the world as a singer and dancer.
In 2015, Welles accused Cosby of sexually assaulting her when she was 17 after meeting him on the set of the TV series, I Spy, in the 1960s.
In a statement released through her lawyer, Gloria Allred, Welles claimed that Cosby took her to a jazz club, where she ordered a Coke.
Welles said that she didn’t remember leaving the club, and she later woke up in an apartment naked and alone, feeling as if she had had sex.
The TV actor said she called Cosby to ask what happened and claimed he said she drank champagne and he took her to the apartment to sleep it off.
She alleged Cosby took later her to the Magic Castle club, where she drank a Coke and woke up naked and alone in the same apartment.
Her accusation was one of the earliest claims against beloved TV star, as 60 women came forward and accused Cosby of sexual assault, rape, drugging, and other sexual misconduct crimes.
After being convicted of sexual assault in 2018, Cosby’s conviction was overturned by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court in June 2021, and he was released from prison.
The TV star was born Nancy Kay Rihl in Venezuela before she moved to the United States with her family aged three.
She became a child actor at 10 and appeared in the show such as Leave It to Beaver and My Three Sons.
She later married singer and actor John O’Banion, and they had one son before divorcing a few years later.