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The Sandusky trial has heard the testimonies of several victims who met Sandusky through his charitable organization for at-risk youth, The Second Mile. Sandusky has been charged with fifty-two counts of sexual abuse over a ten year period and will serve five hundred years if he is found guilty. The victims, although identified by name in the trial, do not wish to have their identities revealed.
Victim 5 was only abused once by Sandusky in 1998. He was referred to The Second Mile to improve his spoken English. Sandusky invited the boy to some football games and then to work out with him. After working out for a short time, Sandusky suggested they take a shower. According to the victim, Sandusky “threw some soap at me and started lathering my shoulders. I crept forward a little bit more, as did he, and I felt his body on my back. I kept lurching forward but I didn’t have anywhere to go.”
Victim 6 met Sandusky in 1998 around the age of eleven. His interactions with Sandusky resulted in an investigation in 1998 but no charges were filed. According to the victim Sandusky “bear-hugged” him in the locker-room shower after practicing wrestling moves with the coach for about fifteen minutes. The victim testified “I felt uncomfortable with it, but it was Jerry Sandusky so I didn’t want to make him move.” When Sandusky started to soap him up he felt even more uncomfortable stating, “at that point, it just was escalating the uncomfortableness but I was just trying not to make him feel that I was feeling a bit awkward about it.” Shortly after the bear-hug the victim claims he blacked out. “[the bear hug] is the last thing I remember about being in the shower. It’s all black.”
Victim 6 maintained contact with Sandusky including texting him on Father’s day, borrowing his car, getting tickets to games, and going on a mission trip to Mexico. The Penn State police investigated Sandusky after the boy’s mother became suspicious; however, no files were charged and there was no further sexual contact reported.
Ronald Schreffler, a former detective for Penn State, said that he eavesdropped on conversations with Sandusky and the boy’s mother and heard the assistant coach tell her, “I wish I could ask for forgiveness. I know I will not get it from you. I wish I were dead.” Shortly thereafter Schreffler recommended to Sandusky that he should not shower with boys again; Sandusky agreed saying he had used “bad judgment.”
The defense claims that although Sandusky has acted somewhat unseemly and inappropriately, he is not a molester. Instead, the defense claims that all of the victims are lying to get money from the university and Sandusky. Sandusky’s defense originally attempted to dismiss the letters from Victim 4 as evidence. Now the defense is using the letters to explain that Sandusky is mentally ill, claiming that they will “explain that the words, tones, requests, and statements made in the letters are consistent with a person who suffers from a Histrionic Personality Disorder.”
The National Institute of Health states that people with Histrionic Personality Disorder “act in a very emotional and dramatic way that draws attention to themselves.”