Since the beginning of the case brought against Jerry Sandusky--the former Penn State coach accused of sexually abusing several boys during his term there--a lot of people, including myself, have wondered if any of his six adopted children would come forward with their own allegations. As the trial wears on and evidence piles up against Sandusky, it seemed inevitable that his family would be called upon to face the jury.
Now, his son Matt has come forward with allegations that he was indeed abused. His statement hasn't been disclosed publicly yet, but it could be a crucial turning point in the case, which was already in deliberation by jurors when Matt came forward.
“During the trial, Matt Sandusky contacted us and requested our advice and assistance in arranging a meeting with prosecutors to disclose for the first time in this case that he is a victim of Jerry Sandusky’s abuse,” read the prosecution's statement. “At Matt’s request, we immediately arranged a meeting between him and the prosecutors and investigators. This has been an extremely painful experience for Matt and he has asked us to convey his request that the media respect his privacy. There will be no further comment.”
Officials confirmed that Matt had come into the Sandusky home as a teenage foster child and was adopted by the family as an adult; however, just four months after moving in to the home in 1995, he attempted suicide. His probation officer documented concern that Matt was not getting what he needed while placed with the Sanduskys, but he was pushed through the system anyway and allowed to continue living there.
Jerry Sandusky has had witnesses come forward to back up his maintained argument that he did nothing wrong, such as Dick Anderson, a Penn State assistant who says that although he knew Sandusky was showering with some of the boys from The Second Mile--Sandusky's charity for troubled youth--after playing sports, it wasn't uncommon for other coaches to do the same thing.
"If Jerry would bring someone in with The Second Mile, they had been working out, for whatever reason they came in, it was not uncommon ... with the other coaches in the shower as well," Anderson said.
However, Anderson's claim for the defense is in counter to one from Mike McQueary, who testified that he saw Sandusky having sex with a boy in the school showers. His claims ultimately led to the termination of former football coach Joe Paterno after Sandusky's arrest last November, for not acting immediately when McQueary told him what he had seen; unfortunately, Paterno died in January.
As for Sandusky, one of his most famous statements regarding all the allegations--which total to almost fifty counts of abuse--stunned the nation when he talked with Bob Costas, who asked Sandusky if he was attracted to young boys.
“Sexually attracted, you know, I, I enjoy young people. I, I love to be around them. … No, I’m not sexually attracted to young boys.”
Prosecutor Joseph McGettigan spoke of the strange comment in his closing arguments to the jury.
“I would think that the automatic response, if someone asks you if you’re a criminal, a pedophile, a child molester, or anything along those lines, would be: ‘You’re crazy. No. Are you nuts?”’