Sandusky Jailed, Faces Additional Charges Of Sexual Abuse
PHILADELPHIA (WFAN/AP) — Amid an investigation into alleged sexual contact with underage boys, former Penn State assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky was removed from his home in handcuffs on Wednesday by the Centre County, Pennsylvania District Attorney’s office and was taken to jail later that day.
A judge has ordered Jerry Sandusky jailed after he was unable pay $250,000 bail on the latest child sex abuse charges against him. Senior Magisterial District Judge Robert E. Scott also said Wednesday that if Sandusky posts bail, he must submit to electronic monitoring. It was not immediately clear if Sandusky was to be released. Prosecutors had sought $1 million in bail.
If he is able to pay, Sandusky will have to submit to electronic monitoring and house arrest, have no contact with victims or witnesses and have no unsupervised contact with minors.
Sandusky faces new charges based on the testimony of two new accusers, including one who claims Sandusky molested him numerous times in a basement bedroom.
The charges were brought after the new accusers were questioned by a grand jury. Both alleged victims were part of Sandusky’s Second Mile charity. One claims he was assaulted in 1997 and the other in 2004.
Sandusky wore blue sweat pants and a gray sweat shirt to the hearing. He was arrested at his home by state police and driven to the magistrate. His lawyer has not responded to the latest charges. Sandusky has said he is innocent.
Authorities say Sandusky was arrested and arraigned on sexual abuse charges brought by two new accusers, bringing the total to 10.
Like earlier accusers, both of the new alleged victims told the grand jury they met Sandusky through The Second Mile charity for at-risk children that he founded in 1977.
“As in many of the other cases identified to date, the contact with Sandusky allegedly fit a pattern of ‘grooming’ victims,” Attorney General Linda Kelly said in a statement. “Beginning with outings to football games and gifts; they later included physical contact that escalated to sexual assaults.”
One of the new alleged victims, dubbed Victim 9 by prosecutors, claims he was first assaulted in 2004, and the other, called Victim 10, told the grand jury he was assaulted after being referred to Second Mile in 1997.
The ninth accuser, currently 18, was 11 or 12 when he first met Sandusky in 2004. Sandusky took him to Penn State football games and gave him gifts and money, and later sexually assaulted him during overnight stays in a basement bedroom in Sandusky’s home, the grand jury said.
The accuser said that Sandusky forced the boy to perform oral sex and attempted on at least 16 occasions to anally penetrate him, sometimes successfully. “The victim testified that on at least one occasion he screamed for help, knowing that Sandusky’s wife was upstairs, but no one ever came to help him,” the grand jury report said.
The 10th accuser told the grand jury he was referred to The Second Mile in 1997, when he was 10 and experiencing problems at home. He also attended Penn State games, spent time at Sandusky’s house, and was subjected to “wrestling sessions” in the basement of the home that led to Sandusky performing oral sex on the boy, authorities said. The accuser also detailed incidents at a pool on the Penn State campus, and a time when Sandusky allegedly exposed himself in a car and requested oral sex from the boy.
As he left his arraignment Wednesday in Bellefonte, Sandusky did not say anything or make eye contact with about two dozen reporters and photographers. Agents from the state attorney general’s office then drove him to the Centre County Jail after he was unable to post bail.
“As in many of the other cases identified to date, the contact with Sandusky allegedly fit a pattern of ‘grooming’ victims,” Pennsylvania Attorney General Linda Kelly said. “Beginning with outings to football games and gifts; they later included physical contact that escalated to sexual assaults.”
Meanwhile, officials at Juniata College said Wednesday that Sandusky applied for the volunteer football coaching job in May 2010 and was rejected the following month after a background check showed a high school where Sandusky previously volunteered was investigating him.
Juniata spokesman John Wall said the college was not informed of the details of the investigation or the existence of a grand jury, but based on the report informed its coaches Sandusky was not to have contact with the program.
“We basically did our due-diligence,” Wall said.
According to WHP-TV, the college wrote in a rejection letter, “You failed to include this information on the background verification form that you filled out at the time of your interview.”
Wall said Sandusky continued to attend games after he we rejected for the job and at one point sat in the press box for an away game. He also wasn’t sure what led Sandusky to be in the press box, but said the school’s former athletic director then reiterated to its coaches that Sandusky was to have no connection with the team.
“I was pretty proud of us,” one senior at the school told WHP, “to know that we did the right thing.”
The information that Sandusky was still pursuing coaching opportunities amid an investigation into his activities comes as his attorney and prosecutors prepare for a preliminary hearing where several of his alleged victims could testify.
A lawyer for one of the young men told The Associated Press his client plans to testify at Tuesday’s hearing and as many as five others who testified before the grand jury could also testify.
The attorney spoke to AP on condition of anonymity because he is trying to ensure his client’s identity isn’t revealed publicly.
Another accuser came forward Tuesday and filed a complaint with authorities. The now 19-year-old said he also met Sandusky through The Second Mile, a charity Sandusky founded in 1977 to help at-risk children, lawyer Charles Schmidt said.
Schmidt said the client, whom he did not identify, went to his law firm about three weeks ago, after Sandusky was charged with sexually abusing eight boys over a 15-year period.
“He suffered one incident of abuse, to use the legal term — involuntary deviate sexual intercourse — allegedly at the hands of Mr. Sandusky,” Schmidt said. “That occurred on the Penn State campus, we believe in the area of the football facilities.”
Schmidt told the AP that his client was 12 years old, dealing with the death of his mother and suffering emotional issues at the time of the campus incident. The lawyer said the two met through The Second Mile and his client claims Sandusky gave him liquor while in the office on campus. The grand jury report did not allege any instances of Sandusky giving boys alcohol.
Schmidt said his law firm is conducting its own investigation into the client’s claims.
“We hope to have it wrapped up within another week. We believe him to be credible,” Schmidt said. “Everything that we’ve been able to unearth since has corroborated what he told us, but we’ll continue to do our due diligence.”
The preliminary hearing could last a day or more, since the defense has the right to cross-examine the state’s witnesses. The judge would then rule if there’s probable cause to uphold the charges.
Sandusky, 67, has denied being a pedophile and has vowed to fight the case. In interviews with NBC and The New York Times, he has said he showered and horsed around with boys but never sexually abused them.
Former sex-crimes prosecutor Richard DeSipio said prosecutors may have to call the six known accusers for the judge to uphold the 40 counts. Defense lawyers sometimes waive preliminary hearings if they are worried about publicity for their clients, but DeSipio said he is not surprised Amendola is demanding the hearing.
“This is their first and only opportunity before trial to actually see the witnesses… to hear their tone and demeanor, and to question them and see how they respond to questions, and also to flush out details,” said DeSipio, who is now a criminal defense lawyer in Philadelphia.
He expects more cross-examination than is typical at this stage, as Amendola tries to lock in the witnesses’ stories. Still, he said, “I doubt the defense lawyer is going to beat up on them.”
“Our position would be that these people have to testify,” Amendola said in an interview. “And one isn’t sufficient, because you have eight separate incidents … with eight separate alleged victims or accusers.”
The state attorney general’s office would not comment Tuesday on their evidence or strategy.
“We’re not going to talk about specific testimony,” spokesman Nils Frederiksen said Tuesday. “We’ll be prepared to present as much as necessary to hold the case for trial.”
Prosecutors listed eight victims in the grand jury report, but didn’t know the identities of two of them when they issued the report Nov. 5. One of the two was a boy allegedly seen being sodomized by Sandusky in a Penn State football complex shower in 2002.
Amendola said he’s looking forward to questioning the prosecution witnesses — including any alleged victims.
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