Sandusky attorney goes on ABC to start giving other side of story

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The lawyer representing former Penn State University defensive coordinator Jerry Sandusky told ABC News that the charges against his client were implausible, and that what likely happened involving the boy identified as "Victim 1" is that the teen reacted to being pushed too hard by his mentor.

"When you push and they don't want you to, they react. And what Jerry believes happened is that this young guy got tired of Jerry pushing," said Joseph Amendola, in an interview that aired Tuesday on "Good Morning America."

"Jerry believes that what happened was this young guy said, 'You know what, gee, if I say Jerry did something to me, that's the end of my relationship with Jerry.' "

Mr. Amendola also said that the story told in the grand jury presentment by Victim 1, that he was sexually assaulted in the "basement room" of Mr. Sandusky's home, was unlikely given the number of visitors the coach had.

"Jerry tells me his house was like a hotel, particularly on football weekends, which is when this young guy ... says that he was at Jerry's house," Mr. Amendola told ABC News. "The house was filled with people. At any given time, probably when this activity was allegedly going on, there might have been 25 to 50 people at Jerry's house."

Mr. Amendola also lamented that his client has been prejudged in the media on the 40 counts against him.

"At this point, I don't think people in general would even be willing to give Jerry a fair trial. They'd just say, 'Let's hang him,' " the attorney said. "What we hope to achieve is through getting information out about Jerry and about our side of this case is to ... get people to thinking there are two sides to this case."

Mr. Amendola anticipates that with people making new allegations that his client could face additional criminal charges.

If so, he told ABC News, Mr. Sandusky could have his bail status changed and end up in jail.

Mr. Sandusky is 67, and if he is convicted on any of the most serious counts against him, including involuntary deviate sexual intercourse, he could face the equivalent of a life sentence.

Mr. Amendola told ABC News that Mike McQueary, the Penn State graduate assistant who reportedly saw his client sodomizing a boy in the shower on Penn State's campus, continued to work with Mr. Sandusky and socialize with him for years after the alleged incident in 2002.

"(It also) defies absolute logic that someone could see something that horrific, that god awful, and not one, do anything about it, and number two, continue to interface with the person that he saw doing it," Mr. Amendola said. "Shook hands with him. Raised money. Helped raise money for troubled kids who now (he) says he saw Jerry abusing in a terrible, terrible way. It just defies explanation."


Paula Reed Ward: pward@post-gazette.com or 412-263-2620.


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