NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — Jerry Sandusky, the former Penn State football coach accused of sexually assaulting at least eight children, is once again speaking out about the case against him.
In a stunning interview with the New York Times, Sandusky addressed everything from his relationships with young boys over the years to what Penn State officials knew about his behavior.
“The allegations are false. I didn’t do those things,” Sandusky said.
Still maintaining he did not sexually abuse young boys, Sandusky spoke about the initial investigation into his behavior.
In 1998, University police questioned Sandusky after a mother reported that he hugged her 11-year-old son in the showers of the Penn State locker room.
“I don’t know if he didn’t know,” Sandusky said. “I know he never said anything to me. I know that.”
Next was the infamous 2002 incident, where assistant coach Mike McQuery says he saw Sandusky abusing a child in a Penn State shower.
Former athletic director Tim Curley confronted Sandusky about that incident.
“I told him it didn’t happen and in my mind, there wasn’t inappropriate behavior and I told him if he wanted to, he could speak to the young person involved,” Sandusky said. “He didn’t want me to bring kids in there to work them out anymore, I remember saying ‘could I just work them out?’ he said no.”
Sandusky said he never sexually abused any child and that prosecutors have misunderstood his work with children.
“They’ve taken everything that I ever did for any young person and twisted it to say that my motives were sexual or whatever,” Sandusky told the Times. “I had kid after kid after kid who might say I was a father figure. And they just twisted that all.’
“All the times were precious times, they were significant times because they weren’t going to have you and you weren’t going to have them,” he said. “It was significant times. It was important times.”
Sandusky also said that the charity never restricted his access to children until he became the subject of a criminal investigation in 2008.
He said he regularly gave money to the disadvantaged boys at his charity, opened bank accounts for them and gave them gifts that had been donated to the charity.
“I tried to reward them sometimes with a little money in hand, just so that they could see something,” he said. “But more often than not, I tried to set up, maybe get them to save the money, and I put it directly into a savings account established for them.”
The paper said he grew most animated when talking about his relationships with children and most disconsolate when he spoke of Paterno and Penn State, and the upheaval caused by his indictment.
During the interview, Sandusky said his relationships and activities with Second Mile children did cause some strain with Paterno. He told the paper he worried that having some children with him at hotels before games or on the sideline during games, could have been regarded as a distraction by Paterno.
“I would have dreams of we being in a squad meeting and that door fly open and kids come running through chasing one another, and what was I going to do?” he said. “Because, I mean, Joe was serious about football.”
As for where he stands now, Sandusky says his circle of friends has diminished and he seems to know the life he once had is over.
“I miss coaching. I miss Second Mile. I miss Second Mile kids,” he said. “I miss interrelationships with all kinds of people. I miss my own grandkids. I mean, you know, I’m going to miss my dog.”
Penn State’s board of trustees made the firing of former head coach Joe Paterno official on Friday. Paterno was fired on Nov. 9 because the board felt the football coach didn’t go far enough in alerting authorities after the 2002 incident.
Sandusky has been charged with 40 counts of molesting eight boys over 15 years and is free on bail while awaiting a preliminary hearing on Dec. 13 .
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