Just a few minutes ago, a judge sentenced Jerry Sandusky to 30 to 60 years in prison:
Former Penn State University assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky was sentenced to 30 to 60 years in prison Tuesday for abusing 10 boys he met over 15 years through his charity for troubled children, NBC News reported.
Sandusky, who was defensive coordinator and for many years the presumed heir-apparent to legendary Penn State football coach Joe Paterno, could have faced as long as 400 years for his convictions on 45 counts of child sexual abuse, but at age 68, he is unlikely ever to leave prison, assuming he loses any appeals.
According to some of the live news reports, the judge said that there was no point in sentencing Sandusky to hundreds of years because of his age. However, the judge did find that Sandusky should be classified as a violent sexual predator, which likely played a role in the decision.
I think this was the best sentence. Sandusky probably will not live long in prison, either due to his age or to some other incident. However, on the off chance that he does, the 30-year sentence will keep him in prison for a long time.
Sandusky wore the same confused, mildly angry expression on his face as police led him out the courtroom that he wore when he was found guilty in June. On Monday, Sandusky released a statement professing his innocence. In that statement, he several accusations:
Why have so many people suffered as a result of false allegations? What’s the purpose? Maybe it will help others. some vulnerable children who could be abused might not be because of all the publicity. That would be nice, but I’m not sure about it. I would cherish the opportunity to become a candle for others, as they have been a light for me.
Later in the statement he said:
A young man who was dramatic, 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.
He went on to claim that there was a conspiracy between the accusers, Penn State, and the media against him. While I think that he was trying, in his mind, to explain everything, I think he revealed just what type of person he truly is. This man wants people to think he loves children and cares about the kids from the Second Mile. He wants people to think he has a big heart. Ask yourself if anyone who cares more about the kids would say this:
Evaluate the accusers and their families. Realize they didn’t come out of isolation. The accusers were products of many more people and experiences than me. Look at their confidants and their honesty. Think about how easy it was for them to turn on me given the information, attention and potential perks. I never labeled or put down them or their families. I tried and I cared, then asked for the same.
Please realize all came to the Second Mile because of issues. Some of those may remain.
That is who Jerry Sandusky really is. He does not care about the boys, and he does not care about what he did to them. When backed into a corner, he blames the boys. He pulls the age-old “Can you really trust them?” card, and that shows more than anything what kind of man this is.
He sounds like a classic, uncaring sociopath.
While the sentence is a good one, there is room for appeal. The judge refused to allow any continuances in the case. That was very unusual, especially in a case this complex. Keep in mind, it has only been a year since the case broke national news. Sandusky was at trial in nine months. In comparison, the Cassie Anthony trial took almost three years before the trial started. There juvenile cases that take longer than Sandusky’s case did.
Sandusky’s lawyers will have a valid argument about lacking the time to review all the evidence, about the prosecutors giving them evidence at the last minute, and about lacking the time to interview everyone involved in the case. However, I doubt that they would win the appeal.
Even if there is ground for an appeal, it is unclear whether any of those factors would change a thing. The statements made by eight different young men would not change, and it is those statements that made the difference.
Whether Sandusky likes it or not, he is going to die in prison. He is not getting an appeal unless there is a bombshell against the state. And he deserves to pay for the crimes. If he is as upstanding a guy as he thinks he is, he should have the integrity to own up to what he did instead of playing the victim.
I have just one more thing to say about Sandusky’s claim about false accusers. It is possible–though unlikely–that one or more of the victims lied. It is extremely unlikely, however, that anyone would make claims like this just to get Sandusky. It is even more unlikely that a dozen men, some of whom could not testify because of the statute of limitations, concocted lies about a man raping them as children with full knowledge that everyone in their small community would know who they were.
While I know there are scores of false accusers, and occasionally a few who might work together, it is ridiculous to think that a dozen men would lie about a popular local figure for no good reason.