Sandusky maintains innocence on eve of sentencing in taped statement
Published Monday, October 8, 2012 10:00PM EDT
On the eve of his sentencing, former Penn State assistant football coach and convicted child sex abuser Jerry Sandusky has released an audio recording that maintains his innocence.
In the three-minute recorded statement, which aired on the Penn State student radio station ComMedia, Sandusky blames his convictions on a group of “well-orchestrated” actors. He also calls one of his accusers “dramatic,” suggesting that the accuser was only seeking attention.
“A young man who is dramatic and a veteran accuser and always sought attention started everything. He was joined by a well-orchestrated effort of the media, investigators, the system, Penn State, psychologists, civil attorneys and other accusers. They won. I've wondered what they really won. Attention, financial gain, prestige will all be temporary,” said Sandusky.
Sandusky also said that he won’t stop fighting the allegations.
“We will continue to fight. We didn’t lose to proven facts, evidence, accurate locations, and times. Anything can be said. We lost to speculation and stories that were influenced by people who wanted to convict me. We must fight unfairness, inconsistency, and dishonesty. People need to be portrayed for who they really are,” he said.
In the statement, Sandusky maintains that since he got married, he never had sex with anyone besides his wife.
“In my heart, I know I did not do these alleged, disgusting acts. My wife has been my only sex partner and that was after marriage. Our love continues,” he said.
The former assistant coach and several of his victims are set to address the judge at a sentencing hearing on Tuesday.
Sandusky’s lawyer Joe Amendola said that his client will proclaim his innocence to Judge John Cleland before he is sentenced on 45 counts of child sexual abuse.
"What I anticipate he'll say is he's innocent," Amendola said Monday outside the courthouse.
Sandusky’s wife, Dottie, plans to attend the hearing, though Amendola said he does not expect her to speak on her husband’s behalf.
Due to the number of charges and the serious nature of the crimes, it is expected that the 68-year-old Sandusky will be sent to prison for the remainder of his life.
Another lawyer on Sandusky’s legal team, Karl Rominger, said a 30-year minimum sentence was likely the best the defence could hope for.
During a radio interview, Rominger said that his client knows full well that the judge could impose a longer sentence if Sandusky continues to insist that he is innocent.
However, some offences carry mandatory minimum sentences that often translate into a life sentence, he said.
"Why worry about the niceties of pleasing the court when it won't change your sentence?" said Rominger.
Amendola said the legal team plans to appeal the convictions.
"The important thing for us is, it starts the appellate process," he said.
The appeal is expected to include a claim that Sandusky’s legal team did not have enough time to prepare for the trial.
Sandusky was charged in November 2011, following a long investigation.
This June, Sandusky was convicted of abusing 10 boys over a span of 15 years, including some instances of abuse that occurred inside Penn State’s athletic facilities.
Tom Kline, a lawyer for one of the accusers, said his client is planning to read a statement during Tuesday’s sentencing.
"He's going to tell the judge how this has affected him, how it's been painful and difficult," Kline said.
Lead prosecutor Joe McGettigan said up to six victims are expected to speak at the sentencing.
During the trial, the victims who testified against the assistant coach described a range of sexually abusive acts from grooming and fondling to oral and anal sex.
Sandusky did not take the stand during the trial, but he conducted media interviews after he was arrested and maintained his innocence.
Last year, prosecutors also arrested two Penn State administrators and charged them with lying to the grand jury that investigated the case. The administrators were also charged with failing to properly report Sandusky’s suspected abuse.
The school’s athletic director and retired vice-president for business and finance are currently awaiting trial. They deny all the charges against them.
The highly-charged case also led to the firing of famous head football coach Joe Paterno, who died in January from lung cancer.
University President Graham Spanier was also ousted from his position as a result of the scandal.
With files from The Associated Press