The identities of all eight victims of Jerry Sandusky, the 68-year-old former Penn state football coach accused of 52 counts of child abuse, will be made public once the trial starts this month. Four of the victims, all now adult men, petitioned the court to be allowed to use pseudonyms during the trial due to the nature of the accusations. Sandusky and his attorneys did not object to the request, but today Judge John Cleland wrote that, ”While I will make every effort to be sensitive to the nature of the alleged victims’ testimony, once the trial begins the veil must be lifted.” Elsewhere in his four-page decision, he wrote, ”As citizens we have certain responsibilities to protect the safety and security of the community as a whole, no matter how personally unpleasant fulfilling that duty may be.”
Those four men, identified till now as victims 3, 4, 5, and 7, may now choose not to testify. In that event, the prosecution will still have four other victims and witnesses, including former assistant coach Mike McQueary, with which to make their case against Sandusky. McQueary has been public about his accusation that he witnessed Sandusky raping a boy in the Penn State locker room showers.
In response to the ruling, defense lawyers Andrew Shubin and Justine Andronici issued the following statement: ”We are extremely disappointed with the court’s ruling. The victims in this case courageously came forward an provided extremely painful and personal information to investigators and prosecutors so that they could help protect children from further harm and exploitation. The victims’ experiences, the abuse they have suffered and its effects and their testimony at trial are certainly matters that are critical to the public interest. However, their personal identities are not.”
Cleland said that he based his judgement on the fact that there is no law in Pennsylvania allowing adults to remain anonymous at trial, but he hoped the media would continue to keep the names private in their reporting of the case.
Sandusky is accused of molesting ten boys over the course of fifteen years. Jury selection for the case begins tomorrow.
The views, opinions and information expressed in articles and blog posts published on imperfectparent.com and all subdomains are those of the authors alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of The Imperfect Parent or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of any entity of, or affiliated with, Imperfect Parent. The Imperfect Parent
is designed for entertainment
purposes only and is not meant to be a substitute for medical, health,
legal, or financial advice from a professional.
of material from any of Imperfect Parent's pages without written
permission is strictly prohibited.