Jerry Sandusky Plans To Speak At Sentencing Hearing

By: CNN Posted By: Stephanie Schultz
By: CNN Posted By: Stephanie Schultz
The 68-year-old former defensive coordinator could be sentenced to life behind bars.

Jerry Sandusky, the former Penn State assistant football coach charged with sexually abusing boys, leaves the Centre County Courthouse in Bellefonte, Pa., Tuesday, Dec. 13, 2011, after waiving his preliminary hearing. The decision moves him toward a trial on charges of child sex abuse. At least some of his 10 accusers had been expected to testify at Tuesday's hearing. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

Highlights

Sandusky could face life in prison after conviction on 45 counts of child sex abuse

His attorney said he has been working on a statement in prison

The scandal led to the firing of Penn State head football coach Joe Paterno

BELLEFONTE, Pennsylvania (CNN) -- Nearly a year after the Penn State scandal erupted, leading to the firing of iconic head football coach Joe Paterno and the ouster of the university's longtime president, the public will learn what punishment is to be doled out to convicted pedophile Jerry Sandusky.

The 68-year-old former defensive coordinator could be sentenced to life behind bars.

Jurors determined in June that Sandusky used his access to university facilities and a foundation he founded for under-privileged youth to sexually abuse 10 boys over a 15-year period.

His attorney, Joe Amendola, said Monday that his client, who is being held in the Centre County, Pennsylvania, jail, has been working on a statement that he plans to read before the court.

The statement is expected to be a reassertion of his proclaimed innocence, according to co-counsel Karl Rominger. He has been advised against speaking freely.

"Contrition without admission is always my advice," Rominger said.

On June 22, Sandusky was convicted on 45 counts of child sex abuse, ranging from corruption of minors to involuntary deviate sexual intercourse, which were laid out in graphic testimony by his accusers over the course of the less-than-two-week trial.

His attorneys will have 10 days after the sentencing to appeal the decision.

At least of three of Sandusky's victims are expected to be in attendance on Tuesday, according to their attorneys. Two of them plan to address the former coach directly, while the third is expected to have a statement read by prosecutors.

The statement from the person identified in court as Victim No.4 "will convey anger," said attorney Benjamin Andreozzi. "He is nowhere near forgiving Sandusky."

But attorney Thomas Kline, who represents Victim No. 5 in a civil suit, said his client "believes this will be a final chapter in the Sandusky matter."

During the trial, which garnered national attention and cast a shadow on Penn State's heralded football program, the 23-year-old victim testified that he was only 13 when Sandusky sexually abused him in a university shower.

That account is separate from a 2001 incident about which graduate assistant Mike McQueary testified, saying that he saw the former coach pressed up against the back of a boy in the shower room of the Lasch Football Building.

Prosecutors described during the trial how Sandusky showered with the boy, using locker room "soap fights" as a pretext for abuse.

Sandusky's attorneys say they plan to appeal the guilty verdict, and will argue that the jury's opinions had been tainted by a prosecution reference to a disturbing interview their client did with NBC's Bob Costas prior to the trial.

Members of the defense team have also maintained that they were denied sufficient time to prepare.

Less than a month after Sandusky's conviction, former FBI Director Louis Freeh released his university-funded report that blamed Paterno, President Graham Spanier, suspended Athletic Director Tim Curley and ex-Vice President Gary Schultz for taking part in a cover-up to avoid bad publicity.

Freeh also said Paterno could have stopped the attacks had he done more, though neither McQueary, Sandusky nor Paterno -- who died in January -- were interviewed by his investigators.

Attorneys for Spanier blasted the review, calling it a "blundering, indefensible indictment" and "a flat-out distortion of facts" that was "infused with bias and innuendo."

In July, the NCAA imposed sanctions against Penn State, including a $60 million fine, scholarship reductions, the vacating of 112 wins, five years' probation and a bowl ban for four years.


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