Sandusky's attorney again seeks records of his client's accusers

is accused of molesting at least 10 boys during a 15-year period. (ED HILLE / Staff Photographer)
is accused of molesting at least 10 boys during a 15-year period. (ED HILLE / Staff Photographer) (Jerry Sandusky)
Posted: March 17, 2012

Jerry Sandusky's attorney on Friday pleaded once again for juvenile arrest records, phone numbers, and psychiatric evaluations of his client's eight accusers, including a report from one doctor who purportedly concluded that one alleged victim was never sexually abused.

The documents, Sandusky's attorney Joseph Amendola said, could help show that the former Pennsylvania State University assistant football coach was set up by his alleged victims, many of whom knew one another before testifying before a state grand jury.

Prosecutors have repeatedly declined to comment on the ongoing investigation, but they have previously argued that releasing the requested records would violate juvenile privacy laws.

Sandusky has denied charges that he molested 10 boys during a 15-year period and is set to take his case before a jury in May.

For months, his attorney has insinuated that his trial strategy will rely on questioning the credibility of the eight young men expected to testify against his client. (Prosecutors have not identified two of the purported victims but charged Sandusky with their abuse based on eyewitness accounts.)

Since the former coach's arrest, Amendola has made vague references to contact between several of the victims and suggested that some have criminal pasts that throw their trustworthiness into question.

But Friday's motion offered some of the most concrete details so far about those allegations. Most surprising was Amendola's assertion that a psychologist evaluated one of the accusers - identified in court filings as "Victim 6" - and concluded that the young man had not been sexually abused by Sandusky.

Prosecutors were refusing to turn over his findings, the attorney alleged, because it could help Sandusky's defense.

According to the grand jury presentment, Victim 6 was the boy at the center of a 1998 investigation undertaken by Penn State police, after his mother accused the former coach of inappropriately touching her 12-year-old son in a locker-room shower.

Though officers filed a long report of their findings at the time, the case was never prosecuted. Amendola has previously requested any documents from the office of former Centre County District Attorney Ray Gricar that might explain his decision not to press charges in the case.

In his motion Friday, Amendola did not elaborate on how he became aware of the psychologist's evaluation of the boy and did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Amendola also requested arrest records and any information pertaining to the purported victims' past histories with drug abuse as well as current and past telephone numbers for the boys.

The attorney said he hoped to compare phone records to show that several of the accusers "knew each other and most likely communicated with each other during the period when the investigating grand jury . . . was holding hearings."

Prosecutors have acknowledged that some of Sandusky's accusers have run into problems with the law but maintained that their records should be shielded by privacy laws.

Last month, Common Pleas Judge John Cleland issued a general ruling ordering prosecutors to hand over all material they deemed relevant to Sandusky's defense and requiring them to provide reasons if they wished to withhold any documents. As of late Friday, the judge had not set a hearing date for Amendola's more specific requests.

Also Friday, Penn State president Rodney Erickson said that at least a half-dozen university employees recently received subpoenas from state prosecutors seeking documents or testimony related to the Sandusky investigation.

But in a statement from general counsel Cynthia Baldwin, the university declined to elaborate.

"We believe it is appropriate that it be left up to them and their attorneys whether to reveal their identities," she said.

Since Sandusky's arrest last year, Attorney General Linda Kelly has frequently referenced the ongoing investigation. But up until now little mention had been made of the grand jury's ongoing areas of inquiry.

Last month, Penn State announced it had also been subpoenaed as part of a federal probe seeking computer data on Sandusky, former university president Graham B. Spanier, and others, as well as any payments members of its board of trustees may have made to third-party groups on the university's behalf.

University officials said they are cooperating with both investigations.


Contact Jeremy Roebuck at 267-564-5218 or jroebuck@phillynews.com, or follow on Twitter @jeremyrroebuck.

Inquirer staff writer Jeff Gammage contributed to this article.

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