Thu | Jul 29, 2021

Former Penn State assistant coach faces life in prison

Published:Sunday | June 24, 2012 | 12:00 AM

BELLEFONTE, Pa (AP):For years, the children Jerry Sandusky preyed upon kept quiet about what the former Penn State assistant football coach did to them in echoing shower stalls, empty hotel rooms and the muffled confines of his basement bedroom.

After a swift trial and less than two days of deliberations, a jury issued an emphatic verdict late Friday: Sandusky was guilty on 45 counts of sexual abuse, meaning the man once considered a successor to coach Joe Paterno will likely die in prison.

The verdict is not the end of the scandal that took down Paterno and deeply shook the state's most prominent university. It will play out for years in courtrooms and through a set of ongoing investigations.

But the trial did present one piece of finality: Sandusky was taken away in handcuffs to the county jail. Sentencing will be in about three months, but mandatory minimums will keep him behind bars for life.

Sandusky, a retired defensive coach, showed little emotion as the verdict was read, giving his wife, Dottie, and family members a half-wave as the county sheriff led him away.

There were only three acquittals among the charges related to 10 victims, eight of whom took the stand to describe fondling, forced oral sex and anal rape. Many of the accusers testified that they had told no one of the abuse that dated as far back as the mid-1990s - not parents, not girlfriends and not police.

The accuser, known in court papers as Victim 6, whose mother alerted authorities in 1998 after Sandusky took her son into a shower, broke down in tears upon hearing the verdicts in the courtroom. Afterwards, a prosecutor embraced him and said, "Did I ever lie to you?"

The man, now 25, testified that Sandusky called himself the "tickle monster" in a shower assault. He declined to comment to a reporter afterwards. His mother said: "Nobody wins. We've all lost."

One of the three counts for which Sandusky was acquitted concerned Victim 6, an indecent assault charge. The man testified that Sandusky had given him a bear hug in the shower but at one point he just "blacked out".

The other acquittals were an indecent assault charge related to Victim 5, who said Sandusky fondled him in the shower, and an involuntary deviate sexual intercourse charge regarding Victim 2, the boy graduate assistant Mike McQueary saw being attacked in a campus shower.