Jerry Sandusky, convicted child molester, will make a statement at his sentencing hearing Tuesday, according to his lawyer, Joe Amendola.
Amendola said, “It’s as certain as certain can be” that the former Penn State assistant football coach will address Judge John Cleland and profess his innocence before he is sentenced on 45 counts of child sexual abuse.
Nobody else is expected to speak on Sandusky’s behalf during the sentencing hearing Tuesday in Bellefonte, Amendola said.
“What I anticipate he’ll say is that he’s innocent,” Amendola said outside the courthouse.
The attorney said others, including Sandusky’s wife, have submitted letters on his behalf and that Dottie Sandusky stands by her husband and will attend the sentencing.
“He’s going to fight for a new trial,” Amendola said. He said “the important thing” about sentencing for the defense “is it starts the appellate process.”
Last week, jurors in Sandusky’s trial said they wished Sandusky is imprisoned for life.
Gayle Barnes, a homemaker and former school district employee, said she thinks a lot about the victims, particularly the eight who testified against Sandusky and provided what she considers the critical evidence of guilt. She said he deserves life in prison.
“I do still feel good, what we as jurors did,” Barnes said. “I didn’t go there saying off the bat he’s guilty. I needed to listen to every single thing that was said.”
Barnes said she has been in touch with a fifth juror and an alternate juror who also plan to attend the sentencing.
High school science teacher Joshua Harper, who has bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Penn State, said that he takes pride in having served on the jury, and that the guilty verdict was not a close call. He wants Sandusky “put away for the rest of his life, really.”
“This is what prisons are for, you know,” Harper said. “I mean, I don’t think you let a guy loose like that.”
He also felt the victim testimony was pivotal.
“It was such a consistent pattern of behavior,” Harper said. “It was just so solid. The defense was just so thin. There was no evidence that these kids were lying. Even the minor inconsistencies that the defense tried to bring up — and did bring up — that made it more convincing.”