Jerry Sandusky Convicted on 45 of 48 Counts, Bail Revoked

Jerry Sandusky has been convicted of 45 of 48 counts. He was not guilty of assault on victim 2 (McQueary count), Victim 5 and Victim 6.

He was remanded into custody immediately. He didn't display any emotion. Some of the counts have a 10 year mandatory minimum. Sentencing will be in 90 days. NBC says he will be sentenced to at least 60 years, an effective life sentence.

The cheering by the mob outside the courthouse was disgusting to watch. Do they think this is a football game?

His lawyer said earlier he would be shocked by an acquittal and the atmosphere at the Sandusky residence is like a funeral home.

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    Very sad, with an inevitable end. (5.00 / 3) (#3)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 09:28:38 PM EST
    What Jerry Sandusky did to those boys -- now men, and probably damaged goods -- was nothing short of monstrous. He's left an incredible amount of psychological wreckage in his wake. Anyone who would rob children of their childhood in such a horrific and self-serving manner deserves the maximum.

    Agree (none / 0) (#7)
    by BTAL on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 09:30:14 PM EST
    The system has worked as designed.

    Which system? Oh, that system. (5.00 / 2) (#59)
    by Towanda on Sat Jun 23, 2012 at 12:10:07 AM EST
    How nice.

    However, there is more than one system involved.

    And other systems failed, catastrophically, to protect many children.

    So: Our society failed, over and over, for many years, for many children.  Nothing to cheer here.


    No, there isn't, save for ... (5.00 / 2) (#62)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Sat Jun 23, 2012 at 12:35:34 AM EST
    ... the quiet satisfaction that a monster has been removed from circulation, probably for the duration of his lifetime.

    But it's certainly not much consolation for the now-young men whose lived Coach Sandusky damaged profoundly, in ways that are close to incomprehensible to most people who've never endured the misfortune of such emotional and psychological trauma.

    I can only speak for myself, but I can tell you that four decades after the fact, I still find it find it terribly difficult -- if not often next to impossible -- to confide personally in otherwise close acquaintances, particularly other men, because I learned from my experience at age 12 that some men had their own private agenda, and thus I could never fully trust them.

    Child abuse is a "gift" that will keep on giving throughout one's own lifetime. As a victim, you can learn to compartmentalize as a coping mechanism, which most of us have done and will continue to do, and you can do your damnedest to ensure that you don't ever do the same thing to your own children, should you have some of your own.

    But trust me, the experience never really leaves you alone, and you can never truly "get over it." Never. All you can do is learn to cope, and move on.



    Outstanding result! (5.00 / 0) (#5)
    by Mitch Guthman on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 09:29:58 PM EST
    I am happy and relieved to have been proven wrong.  

    I wouldn't say this has restored my faith in humanity but this is a very good result. The jury did a very good job.

    Now the state needs to seriously go after the people at Penn State who enabled this bastard for all those years when they knew perfectly well what he was doing to those kids.  

    Two are already charged with perjury for their (5.00 / 1) (#37)
    by Angel on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 10:41:13 PM EST
    Grand Jury testimony, and I believe another is expected to be charged.  I think there will be more to come.

    I hope so because (5.00 / 1) (#84)
    by gyrfalcon on Sat Jun 23, 2012 at 12:47:32 PM EST
    the people who knew or even just suspected and averted their eyes are in some ways far worse than the abuser himself, who at least is operating under the compulsions of a badly damaged or malformed psyche.

    College sports officials and administrators have no such explanation for their enabling behavior.


    In my opinion, defendant (none / 0) (#90)
    by oculus on Sat Jun 23, 2012 at 02:11:50 PM EST
    Sandusky is the person who deserves the principal blame here.  But, yes, of course, those who knew or suspected he was molesting minors should have spoken up.  

    Good point, Oculus, and (none / 0) (#98)
    by NYShooter on Sat Jun 23, 2012 at 09:01:07 PM EST
    that's why I am anxious to see the results of the different investigations going on.

    My entire career, and personal/family life, has been centered among large groups of people and organizations. From school, to the military, to business, and, thankfully, to a large number of friends & acquaintances. And, that's why this case has me baffled.

    I don't think I'm the most naïve person who ever lived, and, so what I'm going to say is, of course, my personal opinion. But, my gut is screaming that if I were a member of Penn State's inner circle, and I had knowledge of this crime, that I would keep silent about it is impossible to accept. And, furthermore, that goes for all posters here also. Just look at the virtually unanimous condemnation expressed here against members of that P.S. inner circle.

    Not that it's necessary to make my point, but most members here at TL have children, or, at least young relatives. Do any of you doubt that, informed of that knowledge, you wouldn't find a way to expose the tragedy taking place?

    I don't care, friend or foe, "left" or "right," young or old, the sexual abuse of youngsters brings out from us the most visceral, instinctive revulsion possible. It just is impossible to accept that that many people would have, could have, kept it a secret for so long.

    There's something else going on, and I hope that before it's all over, we find out what it was.

    And, no, strangers keeping quiet when other strangers are being beaten, or worse, is not a proper analogy to explain the kind of silence we`re talking about here.


    I can not muster a tear (5.00 / 2) (#9)
    by oculus on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 09:33:28 PM EST
    a tear for this convicted serial molester of underprivileged minors.

    I saw this, in part, (5.00 / 1) (#66)
    by cal1942 on Sat Jun 23, 2012 at 02:10:02 AM EST
    as another example of the prominent and powerful exploiting the weak and vulnerable.



    Of course (none / 0) (#76)
    by jondee on Sat Jun 23, 2012 at 10:39:25 AM EST
    you can get away with claiming that it's no people doing the exploiting, but only "the market", or "market forces", and the rationale becomes perfectly reasonable in many people's eyes..

    Bellefonte PA & Philadelphia PA--2 trials (none / 0) (#92)
    by christinep on Sat Jun 23, 2012 at 03:43:52 PM EST
    Within 12 hours yesterday in Pennsylvania, there were guilty verdicts reached in 2 cases involving heretofore "prominent & powerful" people hailing from 2 "prominent & powerful" institutions.  The Sandusky convictions (which this thread addresses) and the conviction of Msgr.Lynn, who served the late Archbishop of Philadelphia as a supervisor with regard to assigning priests, etc. and who as one instrumental in moving known and suspected pedophile priest quietly to new parishes was convicted of child endangerment. (Please note that the Lynn case is being written about as a landmark because action was taken against a high-level official in non-canonical criminal crout.  The DA said later that while he had not gathered sufficient evidence to charge the Cardinal before he died earlier this year, a number of the hierarchy had had "dirty hands." The ramifications are many.)

    Needless to say, cal1942, I concur with your comment.  I was born & raised partially there before moving to Colorado; many relatives resides in PA & environs; we are Catholic (go nuns!); and, my dad (& the rest of us followed closely Penn State football all our lives), etc. etc.  It is sad for so many on so many levels.  Ugly, ugly, dehumanizing crimes.

     Justice came late; but, it came.  It won't bring back innocence or youth of those so wrongly abused.  But, the first concrete steps of Justice have been completed. As for the institutions: If the next steps for Justice are to be, the various rearrangements, repositionings, reach outs must be real.... A cosmetic fix would be its own mockery. My hope: Perhaps, this shaking & awakening that the ugly reality hiding in 2 PA institutions stirred up will lead to a genuine examination of conscience in these powerful institutions charged with inculcating values in our youth.  To begin...that would call for the prominent people at the top not simply to "show" humility but to live the humility that they so often counsel or preach in the public square.


    But for the coincidence of verdicts the same day (none / 0) (#96)
    by Peter G on Sat Jun 23, 2012 at 04:48:14 PM EST
    there is no comparison between the case against ex-Coach Sandusky and the case against Msgr. Lynn.  Lynn was not charged with abusing (much less raping) any child.  He was convicted only of failing to protect a particular altar boy (whom he did not know or know of at all) from being abused by a certain priest whom Lynn had approved being transferred (because of past abuse allegations against that priest) from a parish position to a hospital chaplaincy (where his job would bring the priest into much less contact with children) ... but in the priest's new position Lynn allowed him to live in a parish rectory and to serve Mass at the church (where there were young altar servers).  The priest pleaded guilty and testified against Lynn.  Yet Lynn was acquitted of conspiring with the priest to endanger this boy, apparently because the jury thought he lacked any specific intent to harm any child as required to prove the conspiracy charge.) This is a big stretch from any application of the child endangerment laws ever seen before, and certainly from any interpretation that existed at the time.  So in Lynn's case, there are major "ex post facto" and other fairness problems, plus many, many questionable evidentiary rulings by the judge during the trial that allowed in, for example, evidence of abuse of other kids by other priests within the diocese, that were not charged as involving any crime committed by Lynn.  I think he has very strong grounds for appeal, and it's a disgrace, imho, that the judge had him locked up Friday night upon return of the verdict.  That case is nothing like Sandusky's.

    Mine was a comment of sentiment, Peter G (5.00 / 1) (#99)
    by christinep on Sat Jun 23, 2012 at 09:42:24 PM EST
    It should not be read to draw comparison nor to assign a level in Dante's Inferno let alone anywhere else. First, my personal connections with Pennsylvania--as stated--led to a sadness, a realization of the community shock in both instances.  In fact, a discussion with a cousin several hours ago elicited similar feelings--not about the ins & outs of the courtroom proceedings, rather about the societal implications and the general questions which we all stare at in these kinds of instances.

    As for Msgr. Lynn: He has been convicted. Whether an appeal will be taken & the disposition of any such action, I know not. Whether he is a scapegoat for the reported actions within the Diocese that appear to have been ongoing for a number of years is another matter.  

    My comments are meant to be responsive to a general lament about powerful people & powerful institutions taking advantage of more vulnerable people like youngsters.  In both cases in PA we see that situation.  As you point out, Sandusky's crimes reach a level of disgust; and, I'm not going to quibble about what Msgr. William Lynn was convicted of doing and about the related circumstances of the case.  

    In the Archdiocese investigation, we do know that more than a few dozen priests known or suspected to be pedophiles were on a list authored by/in possession of Msgr Lynn, and that such list was ultimately locked in a safe in the Archbishop's suite (the late Cardinal Bevilaqua) & not turned over to authorities until about February of this year.  Presumably, a number of young people were victims of the individuals on the list of which the Monsigneur was aware. More than "only" one person.  Now, let me be clear: I realize that this broader situation is the stuff of reportage and background, not the evidence related to the single count on which he was convicted. That is a matter of law.  What my comment of sentiment covers is a broader statement (you know, the kind of statement made often on TL). The broader statement involves the people of power & the institutions, as Cal1942 mentioned in the comment leading to all this: The Philadelphia Archdiocese has been riddled with the sadness of pedophilia allegations for some time...the Lynn prosecution & jury verdict stands for an important component and landmark case in a diocese of 1.5 million people, people who have been shaken by the unfolding background, claims, and trial. Complexities, of course, abound. For one, we are presented with the dilemma of conscience vs. obedience...not exactly Nuremburg, but a similar matter of listening to his superiors or reporting what he knew. Many implications beyond the trial. Certainly more than "only" one boy.

    Sandusky and Lynn...similar & not similar.  Both men of power and from the top institutions in PA. Ugly & sad.  About the legal cases; about a lot more.

    I sppreciate, respect your observations, Peter G.; and, now ask that you would afford me the same courtesy for weighing in with my gut response on the emotional effect of the state of affairs linking the two.


    I am tired and amazed by (none / 0) (#100)
    by Tov on Sat Jun 23, 2012 at 10:21:39 PM EST
    what to me seem to be apologias for the Catholic Church couched in subgective legal reasonings. I am not intimately familiar with this case or the laws relevant to it, but it is common sense that some  legal action needed to be taken against this individual. If the grounds for appeal prove fruitful...so be it. Let him fight for his freedom...the kids didn't have that opportunity.
    I think a fair comparison can be made with the
    Sandusky case- in that- both were protected by  large,powerful institutions and I would add, lax moral priorities...to say the least. I have agreed with you on other matters but must respectfully disagree here.  

    Not all grave social problems (5.00 / 1) (#101)
    by Peter G on Sat Jun 23, 2012 at 10:38:07 PM EST
    or moral wrongs should find their remedies in the criminal law -- particularly not where, as here, the District Attorney and the judge had to stretch and twist the existing criminal laws to fit the facts.  That is not to apologize for the failings of the Catholic Church or its hierarchy, which I don't.  I was not commenting on Msgr. Lynn's choice of profession, or his execution of his duties in that post.  My comment was limited to the issues in the criminal case at hand, a topic more central to this blog and to my own expertise, such as it is.  I do not welcome prosecutors trying to solve all the ills of society and its institutions by putting people in jail with ever more "creative" theories.

    I agree, Peter, we are all ill-served by (5.00 / 2) (#102)
    by caseyOR on Sat Jun 23, 2012 at 11:13:46 PM EST
    the stretching and twisting of facts.  
    I do not welcome prosecutors trying to solve all the ills of society and its institutions by putting people in jail with ever more "creative" theories.

    You are right. Prosecutors and their creative theories are a danger. Still, I have to wonder, if there are no laws that cover the despicable actions of the Catholic hierarchy in these cases, what the hell is wrong with this country? Why isn't every goddamn American cardinal and bishop who presided during these abuses in prison?

    That Church officials, and I mean you, Cardinal Dolan, feel free to mount campaigns against their victims and to then claim the mantle of victimhood for the Church is surely as egregious a sin as I have ever seen. And if there is no law with which to hold the Church accountable, well, shame on us.


    Most of the law is not criminal law (none / 0) (#103)
    by Peter G on Sat Jun 23, 2012 at 11:37:54 PM EST
    Enormous amounts of civil liability have been imposed on the Catholic Church, in favor of victims, arising out of its systematic protection of pedophile priests and the corresponding failure to protect the Church's own young parishioners.  To say that certain criminal laws are being improperly applied in the Philadelphia case is not to say that "no laws ... cover the despicable actions of the Catholic hierarchy in these cases." That's not my position at all.

    Query... (none / 0) (#104)
    by Tov on Sat Jun 23, 2012 at 11:49:49 PM EST
    I presume or at least I hope that you are not suggesting that child abuse, endangerment etc.  are "grave social problems or moral wrongs"  that should not find remedies in the criminal law.
    What course would have you suggested the prosecutors have taken in this case. Ignore it? What remedies would you prescibe for this situation? No trial? What are your specific grievances with the ways of the court and state- or reasons for this trial in the first place?

    If, as you suggest there were "creative" theories at work here and that judge stretched and twisted the existing law to fit the facts- then an appeal is most assuredly warranted. However, since you did not state specifics as to why you came to that conclusion, I could only reasonably deduce that this was a broadside against bringing a suspect to trial in a decades long effort across this country and the world to find justice for the abused. The real stretching and twisting, the real creative theories I have witnessed, have been performed by the Church and its hiearachy.
    Perchance the laws will or should be changed to make a more just trial available in the future...Until then, these suspects must face trial.


    I am done commenting on this subject (5.00 / 2) (#109)
    by Peter G on Sun Jun 24, 2012 at 12:14:09 PM EST
    I have work to do for clients today.  I expressed my POV, including the factual and legal bases for those perspectives, as clearly as I could in the several rather lengthy comments I made Saturday.  I cannot continue a dialog at this point.

    Couldn't agree more (none / 0) (#10)
    by lousy1 on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 09:38:03 PM EST
    except would it be less onerous with kids who aren't underprivileged?

    It generally doesn't happen (5.00 / 2) (#28)
    by gyrfalcon on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 10:12:58 PM EST
    anywhere near as much with children who aren't needy and damaged in some way.  Predators, whether in nature or civilization, instinctively target the weak.

    The pattern of behavior Sandusky has been convicted of is classic for pedophiles.  Don't know if the jury realized that, but that's what's been so chilling and so convincing to those of us who do know about that pattern.


    The behavior is common among adults, too. (5.00 / 3) (#56)
    by SuzieTampa on Sat Jun 23, 2012 at 12:00:24 AM EST
    The term "grooming" in discussions of pedophilia mirrors many heterosexual relationships. It's common for men to seek women who are lower in socio-economic status, such as job status, pay, education, etc. For many people, it's expected that the man will pay for meals, entertainment, etc., and give gifts. A number of men will think the woman then owes them, and some women will feel guilty if they don't try to be accommodating.

    In what we used to call "petting," men would start with innocent touching, such as massaging your shoulders, or putting their hand on your knee. They didn't just grab your breast or crotch right away.  

    "Disadvantaged" women, including the poor and/or mentally troubled, are vulnerable to predatory men.  

    So, pedophiles don't have to learn a new set of tricks. They just apply some typical dating behavior to children.


    Ahh...grooming. (none / 0) (#63)
    by Slayersrezo on Sat Jun 23, 2012 at 12:36:49 AM EST
    An overused term if there ever was one.


    You might notice the attorney agrees with the comment that there is no real absolute defense other than avoiding children all together.


    no (none / 0) (#68)
    by TeresaInPa on Sat Jun 23, 2012 at 08:01:44 AM EST
    no, it is not the same at all.  I know what you are getting at and that behavior is not very nice, but it in no way compares to the evil that is the grooming of a child, male or female by an adult who goes on to rape them over and over.

    Teresa, I understand (5.00 / 2) (#72)
    by SuzieTampa on Sat Jun 23, 2012 at 09:59:08 AM EST
    that the repeated rape of a child is incomparable to a man buying a gift for a woman in hopes of getting sex in exchange. But the point I'm trying to make is that the behaviors of pedophiles, such as giving gifts, beginning with innocent touching, etc., are similar behaviors to those that we accept as normal in adult relationships. Thus, it's odd when people talk about pedophiles "grooming" children as if "grooming" were a set of behaviors practiced only by pedophiles.

    It's hard for me to be disgusted by the (5.00 / 4) (#40)
    by Anne on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 10:51:23 PM EST
    crowd cheering in the face of the evil that is Jerry Sandusky, and the horror of abuse and psychological damage he has inflicted upon so many boys.

    Now the spotlight must shift to the institutional culture - very similar to the Catholic Church - that enabled Sandusky to prey on his victims for much longer than should have ever been possible, and which should be held accountable for its failures.  

    And Joe Amendola is an embarrassment to defense attorneys everywhere.

    Penn State and also Phila. Archdiocese (none / 0) (#93)
    by christinep on Sat Jun 23, 2012 at 03:53:33 PM EST
    In my comment above, Anne, the eerie timing as to 2 powerful institutions in PA is referenced.  Earlier today, a cousine of mine (now living in Va, but also from PA) reflected on the combination of ugly events that have shaken many in Penna this past year. Further info as to Msgr. Lynn, convicted yesterday in a landmark case in Phila for child-endangerment, can be found in numberous write-ups in the Philadelphia Inquirer or Philly.com.

    and as someone who was abused several times by grown men when I was younger than either of my two sons are now, I literally cannot express my revulsion and anger from just looking at JS's face.

    While I cannot support in any way his likely fate in prison as a well-known child molester, I also cannot muster up much empathy for him.

    Good by and good luck, JS, I hope this is the last time I have to think about you.

    Well that's something we have in (5.00 / 1) (#61)
    by jondee on Sat Jun 23, 2012 at 12:33:24 AM EST
    common, su.

    And, I don't know about you, but I've personally mentally rehearsed more times than is probably healthy, the schematics of administering some swift justice with an aluminum baseball bat to any Sandusky-type I ever caught in the act in the future. Sick, sick puppies as they undoubtably are. The upshot being that I'm not terribly sympathetic with this "you'd be too intimidated to stop it, if you were there" line that I've heard ad nauseum, ever since this case broke.

    Some things you just know.


    Without a doubt, there are those ... (5.00 / 1) (#64)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Sat Jun 23, 2012 at 12:56:13 AM EST
    amongst us who's step up and do the right thing to put a stop to it.

    But sadly, I've long since concluded that the solid majority of people, all current protestations aside, would instead look the other way, not wishing to become involved.

    And I think research on the subject would tend to support my contention, because studies have shown that while nearly 30% of us know of cases of child abuse and / or neglect in our own communities, only 8% to 12% of us are actually motivated enough to do something about it personally. Incredibly, most of us will respond -- in some cases, quite adamantly -- that it's someone else's responsibility to take care of it.

    I mean, think about it, and let's be truly honest with ourselves. For example, how many times have we seen children physically abused in public by a exasperated parent or another adult, or perhaps an incident of domestic violence, and yet we said nothing?

    I'm not looking for an answer, to that but am just putting it out there for some honest self-reflection. I think we all love to talk a good game -- "Hey, if that were me, why, I'd take the guy and BAM! BOFF! POW! ..." -- but do we really "got game"? Unfortunately, for most of us, I'd have to say that the answer is a likely "No."



    when you have been (none / 0) (#112)
    by TeresaInPa on Sun Jun 24, 2012 at 06:46:36 PM EST
    through it, I think maybe it is a little easier to lose those inhibitions that keep us from acting.

    I can't imagine what either one (5.00 / 1) (#81)
    by Militarytracy on Sat Jun 23, 2012 at 12:08:22 PM EST
    of you have been through.  The little I can do is wish upon you both some moments of peace, clarity, empowerment over the scars as the system seems to do what must be done this one time that we all get to witness.  I am told it will take more stamina and courage to become a survivor of this form of abuse than any other.  I lost a very dear friend because she could make the jump.  We loved her so, I still can't believe sometimes that we lost her, that we couldn't help her find a way to make the past survivable.  She tried though.  She did her best.

    Thanks Tracy, (5.00 / 2) (#88)
    by jondee on Sat Jun 23, 2012 at 01:49:52 PM EST
    Conpiracies of silence and ludicrous taboos about what subjects we humans -- parents and children, brothers and sisters --  should be able to rationally discuss and deepen our understandings about, has probably bred more Sanduskys than any aberrant disposition latent in the human genome that any researcher will ever be able to map..

    It's only fairly recently, in the last few decades, that people even started using the term "child abuse" (speaking of societal taboos). And of course, we still have quarters in the Liberatarian crowd who, to this day, defend the use of child labor in parts of the world (and of course, if child workers are o.k, then why not child "sex workers"..?)

    A measure of how much these discussion taboos have still held, to me, was when Dr Jeffrey Masson was excommunicated from the Freudian community in the eighties for stating the obvious fact that Freud, in his illustrious career, never discussed the significance of incest or child abuse other than in the context of children's sexual fantasies about their parents. To Freudian cultists Masson's critique could mean only one thing: Masson secretly hated his Father..

    "It is good for a man who thinks seriously, seriously to face his fellows, and speak out whatever really burns in him, so that men may seem less strange to one another, and misunderstanding, the fruitful cause of aimless strife, may be avoided."

          William Morris          


    Peace, brother. (5.00 / 1) (#87)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Sat Jun 23, 2012 at 01:35:41 PM EST
    Any ideas on why the 'McQuery Count' was not (5.00 / 1) (#67)
    by ruffian on Sat Jun 23, 2012 at 06:18:48 AM EST
    a conviction? I did not follow the trial vey closely.

    Regarding the cheering, I will be more impressed when people cheer college administrators putting the welfare of children above that of their football program. It is pretty easy to cheer this verdict.

    I'm speculating here (5.00 / 1) (#70)
    by rdandrea on Sat Jun 23, 2012 at 09:00:35 AM EST
    because the jurors declined to be interviewed.

    I think a likely explanation is that the jury had doubts about how well McQueary saw what he saw and whether what McQueary witnessed met the definition of "Involuntary deviate sexual intercourse."  Remember that they requested a read-back of his testimony and Dr. Dranov's about this incident.

    The statute is here.

    Remember also that Victim Two, whose assault McQueary saw, was never identified, never came forward, and never testified.  The jury had to rely solely on McQueary's third-party account of what happened.

    I don't think the "Not Guilty" on that particular charge indicates that the jury didn't believe McQueary.  They did, after all, convict on four other charges related to Victim Two, all on the basis of McQueary's testimony.  They just weren't sure what he saw.

    The Harrisburg Patriot-News has published a breakdown of the charges and verdicts by  victim.


    Sandusky was convicted on multiple counts (5.00 / 3) (#75)
    by Peter G on Sat Jun 23, 2012 at 10:21:20 AM EST
    as to every victim.  It's only the top count on Victim 2 (McQueary as eyewitness), and a couple of other detail-specific counts, that was a not guilty (PDF of all verdicts), reflecting reasonable doubt as to the precise nature of the act (in this instance, was there penetration, I would guess).  This kind of verdict, by the way, is generally interpreted by appellate courts as a sign of an intelligent and careful jury, which in turn makes the defendant's appeal more difficult.

    Short as the deliberation was for (5.00 / 3) (#86)
    by gyrfalcon on Sat Jun 23, 2012 at 12:58:52 PM EST
    so many counts, this jury does seem to have been systematic and scrupulous about the way they went through the evidence for each count.  They didn't just decide the overall evidence showed him to have committed a lot of bad acts, throw up their hands and say guilty on all counts and the specifics don't really matter.  Good for them.

    Thank you both (none / 0) (#77)
    by ruffian on Sat Jun 23, 2012 at 10:40:12 AM EST
    I think we both guessed right (none / 0) (#117)
    by rdandrea on Mon Jun 25, 2012 at 10:29:26 AM EST
    From a juror interview in the Harrisburg Patriot-News:

    McQueary said he never actually saw penetration by Sandusky, meaning the rape charge would not stand. But after reviewing testimony, Harper said the close contact McQueary did see was enough to carry the day for indecent contact and three other counts.

    Hypocracy (5.00 / 2) (#94)
    by ScottW714 on Sat Jun 23, 2012 at 04:25:41 PM EST
    It's very unfortunate that guilt sells in America to the extent that people would cheer at a guilty verdict and the deprivation of someone's freedom.  I can understand people feeling satisfied that a man was convicted after a fair trial with competent counsel (assuming that's what happened here, I didn't follow the trial.) But to cheer as if they are in a Roman coliseum instead of on the courthouse steps?  Those are the people I would find indefensible, not my clients.

    I agree with this for the most part.

    But damn Jeralyn, for someone who is adamant about not judging ones guilt, it never reconciles with me how you so easily judge other peoples actions.

    There certainly, to me, are people who are afforded the latitude to cheer a verdict.  For you to say something so callus as 'Those are the people I would find indefensible, not my clients.' to someone in the case who wasn't believed or didn't have the courage to come forward or whose life has been ruined because of this man, is just as indefensible.

    I understand that the is the super minority of the crowd, but those few don't deserve your wrath.

    And I totally get that the rush to judge for a defendant had far greater consequences than a rush to judgment about a crowd.

    But I think you do a great disservice to assume everyone is cheering for a gladiator and not just extremely relieved that the monster that hurt them has been held accountable.

    For me, no cheering, I can't get past the fact that a guilty verdict means those kids were abused.

    Guilty on 45 of 48 (none / 0) (#1)
    by me only on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 09:18:16 PM EST

    Defense counsel, Joe Amendola (none / 0) (#8)
    by Peter G on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 09:33:01 PM EST
    should be given great credit, in my opinion, for putting up an honest and vigorous defense in a very difficult case for a very difficult client.

    Amendola, in my opinion (5.00 / 3) (#16)
    by gyrfalcon on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 09:49:33 PM EST
    should stop talking.  He's been carrying on extensively to the press post-verdict outside the courthouse, given the public wayyyy more information than he has any reason to give.   He's also apparently been talking a lot to reporters as the trial went on, on condition they not report what he said until after the verdict.

    Sounds to me like he's been desperately trying to "redeem" himself for defending Sandusky in the eyes of the press and public.  Don't take the case if you're ashamed of it, IMO.


    I really would have preferred a (none / 0) (#11)
    by me only on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 09:38:22 PM EST
    plea deal.  Sandusky, however, seems to love the spotlight too much to accept one.  I am a little surprised that Amendola was able to keep him off the stand.

    There's no plea deal (none / 0) (#14)
    by gyrfalcon on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 09:45:56 PM EST
    he could have gotten where he wouldn't have ended up dying in prison anyway, given the number and seriousness of the charges and his age.  He could be sentenced now up to 500 years, if he were given the maximum on each charge.

    According to my local news, Sandusky (none / 0) (#19)
    by caseyOR on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 09:52:40 PM EST
    was going to take the stand. Then, on Wednesday, one of his adopted children, his son Matt, threatened to go public with his own accusations of sexual abuse by Sandusky. The defense then ended its case without Sandusky's testimony.

    It is my understanding that the jury did not know about Matt's accusations before they began deliberations. And why would they since Matt did not testify?


    The information (none / 0) (#21)
    by oculus on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 09:58:10 PM EST
    From the adopted son was certainly publicized and it is my understanding the jury was.not sequestered. Of course the court admonished the jurors not to partake of media re this case.

    It was my understanding that the jury (none / 0) (#32)
    by Anne on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 10:25:21 PM EST
    was sequestered; before leaving court the day before closing arguments, they were instructed to pack and bring a bag with them the next morning, because once they got through closing and jury instructions and had ended any deliberations they had started that first day, they would be going to a hotel where they would have no tv, print media, telephone, or computer access before being returned to the court to continue their deliberations.

    You're right: (none / 0) (#35)
    by oculus on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 10:32:46 PM EST
    FYI, this has been widely reported (none / 0) (#23)
    by gyrfalcon on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 10:00:44 PM EST
    by national media for the last several days, and Amendola also confirmed it (in some detail) just now in a press conference outside the courthouse.

    General consensus from TV analysts, reporters and commentary, though, seems to be that this kind of information does get to even ostensibly sequestered juries like this one.

    Jeralyn might be able to confirm whether that's true.


    Just before the end of the trial (none / 0) (#69)
    by TeresaInPa on Sat Jun 23, 2012 at 08:14:01 AM EST
    Sandusky's adopted son told the prosecution that he was a victim and ready to testify against his father.  They decided that he would only be used as a witness if his father testified.  I think that was the thing that convinced Sandusky not to take the stand.  

    That opens the Pandora's box question (none / 0) (#12)
    by BTAL on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 09:42:17 PM EST
    How do defense attorneys balance personal feelings when it is obvious (or their client admits) the client is guilty of the crimes as charged?

    I understand and support vigorous defense of the accused, but how does one stand up in court and defend the indefensible.



    We do not defend our clients' alleged conduct (5.00 / 8) (#17)
    by Peter G on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 09:50:40 PM EST
    We defend the human being who is accused, against the power of the state to impose punishment, which is pain and deprivation. In doing so, we insist that the legal rights applicable to everyone are enforced even in the cases of those who seem least deserving.  If they are not, then they are not "rights" at all, and no one's are safe from official oppression and abuse. If the accused chooses to waive those rights and plead guilty, we help him/her do so with the least adverse consequences realistically possible.  If the person does not (or simply cannot) admit the charges, we insist that the state carry its heavy burden of proving guilt beyond a reasonable doubt, and then that the punishment imposed meets the morally necessary principle of "parsimony" (sufficient to do justice, but no greater than necessary to achieve those ends).

    Thank you for the reasoned and well (none / 0) (#24)
    by BTAL on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 10:02:07 PM EST
    written response.

    I accept the mission/goal of the greater good and holding the state responsible to its obligations.  Same as to the inalienable innocent until proven guilty right of the accused.

    It appears to be system designed to cause internal personal turmoil when one (the defense attorney) knows beyond any doubt their client is guilty.  


    I should have acknowledged the other part (5.00 / 2) (#31)
    by Peter G on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 10:19:59 PM EST
    of your question, BTAL - whether there is internal personal conflict on the part of the attorney. If, as a lawyer, you feel you cannot separate your personal feelings from your professional conduct, then you have a kind of "conflict of interest" that requires you to withdraw and let someone else handle the case.  Some of us categorically cannot handle certain kinds of charges, regardless of the individual client's circumstances -- child abuse, perhaps, or fraud targeting the elderly, or racist hate crimes, or whatever it may be.  Others can put their personal feelings aside in any kind of case.  It all depends on the individual. Fortunately (speaking with a bit of irony here), our legislatures and courts have so stacked the rules and enhanced the punishments in the last 30 years or so, that even the most "guilty" can be virtually assured of being treated unjustly and excessively in the system.  This makes it easier for defense lawyers to rally to the side of any and everyone accused.

    Thank you (5.00 / 1) (#36)
    by BTAL on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 10:34:22 PM EST
    I Would Add... (5.00 / 1) (#95)
    by ScottW714 on Sat Jun 23, 2012 at 04:43:22 PM EST
    ...I understand what you said, but for some us that wear our emotions on our sleeves, what you explained, and what you do, is really hard to grasp.

    To me you have to have the ability to more or less dissociate your personal feelings from your job.  Not something many of us can do.

    But thank god some people can, because as much as I am repulsed by some defendants, it doesn't come close to the repulsion I feel when I read about injustice.  Namely, but not limited to the people who falsely imprisoned or executions with some doubt.

    And if you folks weren't out there defending the worse or the worse, the injustices would be far greater.


    Peter, Great response (none / 0) (#46)
    by Jeralyn on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 11:01:04 PM EST
    both of your comments -- thanks for posting them.

    I agree with Jeralyn. (5.00 / 1) (#52)
    by Green26 on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 11:33:35 PM EST
    Peter, those were terrific posts. The first one was perhaps even profound. I'm a lawyer, but not a criminal lawyer, so know a bit about criminal law and rights. When I was reading the first post, I couldn't wait to read the next word. I learned something from those posts. Thanks.

    As with you, J, (5.00 / 1) (#73)
    by Peter G on Sat Jun 23, 2012 at 10:03:31 AM EST
    it comes from the heart, and from over 35 years' experience.

    This hit home for me (none / 0) (#51)
    by nycstray on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 11:19:46 PM EST
    Fortunately (speaking with a bit of irony here), our legislatures and courts have so stacked the rules and enhanced the punishments in the last 30 years or so, that even the most "guilty" can be virtually assured of being treated unjustly and excessively in the system.  This makes it easier for defense lawyers to rally to the side of any and everyone accused.

    Not the fortunately part, but the unjust/excessiveness.


    Very well said (none / 0) (#25)
    by gyrfalcon on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 10:07:45 PM EST
    Which is why I'm hugely put off by Amendola's public behavior just now.

    The state should be forced to prove its case.  That's a noble calling, IMO, and no honorable defense attorney should go around telegraphing that he/she thinks the client is guilty, which is what Amendola has been doing.

    If you're embarrassed to be defending the case, don't take it.

    It took me until some years after O.J. Simpson to really "get" what defense attorneys do, but I finally really got it.

    Mickey Sherman has a book I've not read but I bet is first rate on this topic called "Why Do You Defend Those People?"


    It's a great book (none / 0) (#45)
    by Jeralyn on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 11:00:07 PM EST
    I included it in my comment answering this question below. You can read his chapter, Who Wouldn't Your Represent, here. I talk more about his book here.

    You can still get the book on Amazon, here's the link for the Kindle edition.


    I Doubt I Would Enjoy that Book (none / 0) (#80)
    by RickyJim on Sat Jun 23, 2012 at 11:50:16 AM EST
    I clicked Jeralyn's link and read,
    For some reason, everyone expects me to say that I won't represent clients if I know or believe that they may be guilty. There is a word for lawyers who go by that standard; they are called "poor". There are exceptions to my observation, but very few. In fact, I am pretty sure there is only one: Barry Scheck.

    For those of us who remember Scheck's performance in the OJ Simpson case, Sherman instantly has no credibility.


    Barry Scheck, as I understand it, (5.00 / 2) (#91)
    by Peter G on Sat Jun 23, 2012 at 03:31:17 PM EST
    took the money he made as part of the OJ "dream team" -- perhaps the only big fee he earned in his life -- and started the Innocence Project with it. He began as a public defender; obviously Mickey Sherman was not asserting that Barry would only represent those he believed were innocent when he was with New York Legal Aid. I'm sure Sherman was referring, when writing of Barry Scheck in the present tense, to what Barry does today as co-director of the Innocence Project.

    What if the defendant really is innocent? (5.00 / 1) (#38)
    by Payaso on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 10:45:22 PM EST
    What if the defendant really is innocent but his attorney thinks he's guilty so he just goes through the motions?

    Ineffective assistance of counsel is one of the leading causes of wrongful conviction.


    Ray Gricar.. (none / 0) (#42)
    by jondee on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 10:53:48 PM EST
    Anyone know if there's been any new revelations on that angle of this debacle?



    it's not about our feelings or opinions (5.00 / 2) (#41)
    by Jeralyn on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 10:52:53 PM EST
    we are advocates, we don't judge. Committing an act doesn't make one guilty of a crime. Except for a few strict liability offenses, crimes are composed of acts and culpable mental states. Even a client who commits a bad act may not be guilty of a crime because they don't have the required mental state or have another legitimate defense.

    Everyone charged with a crime deserves the best defense possible. Only when the trial is fair, can society trust in the integrity of the jury s verdict.  Only by protecting the rights of those we consider the lowest among us, can we ensure those rights will be there for everyone should they need them.  

    As for how we do it, I can only answer for myself: With pride and dedication. Except for one's health, I can't think of anything more important to any individual than his or her freedom. To be provided the opportunity to preserve someone's freedom is a gift, not a burden.

    A defense lawyer's role doesn't end with a verdict. When a client acknowledges guilt by pleading guilty or is found guilty at trial, we  turn our attention to sentencing and mitigation of punishment. There's something good in everyone. Good people sometimes do bad things, It's our responsibility to make sure the judge sees it.

    It's very unfortunate that guilt sells in America to the extent that people would cheer at a guilty verdict and the deprivation of someone's freedom.  I can understand people feeling satisfied that a man was convicted after a fair trial with competent counsel (assuming that's what happened here, I didn't follow the trial.) But to cheer as if they are in a Roman coliseum instead of on the courthouse steps?  Those are the people I would find indefensible, not my clients.

    Every human being, including criminal defendants who have done bad things, are entitled to be treated with dignity and respect. Society may have the right to take away their freedom, but it does not have the right to  take away their humanity.

    That being said, if a lawyer does not think he or she can provide an effective defense to a client because of the nature of the crime, he or she should decline it. For examples of some prominent lawyers and cases they turn down, check out my post Who Wouldn't You Represent, which is a review of my friend Mickey Sherman's book, How Can You Defend Those People. He interviewed a bunch of lawyers whose names you will recognize and relates their responses as to who they wouldn't represent (including mine.) Actually, you can read his whole chapter, Who Wouldn't You Represent, here.


    If Jerry Sandusky had treated the (5.00 / 2) (#47)
    by Anne on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 11:05:37 PM EST
    young boys in his charge with dignity and respect, he wouldn't be where he is now.

    I appreciate the work you do, Jeralyn, and heartily support the reasons why you do it; from all appearances Sandusky was afforded a fair and honest trial, and we can all be glad for that, but I, at least, cannot lose sight of the horror he inflicted and the damage he did, and I suspect I am not alone.


    The sad thing is that (5.00 / 2) (#58)
    by gyrfalcon on Sat Jun 23, 2012 at 12:05:10 AM EST
    most pedophiles have convinced themselves that not only are children not harmed by their "attentions," but that they actually get pleasure and satisfaction from it and, believe it or not, have better self-esteem and self-respect as a result of being "loved."

    By all reports, that's Sandusky's belief.  He'd probably readily admit his activities with these children under the right circumstances, but what he adamantly refuses to believe is that it constituted "abuse."  He's clearly genuinely bewildered that anybody would think what he did harmed these kids.

    You can hear that quite clearly between the lines in the incredible Bob Costas interview.

    And btw, I would bet dollars to donuts that Sandusky himself was regularly sexually abused for years as a child by someone he loved and trusted.  It's a pattern that repeats itself over generations, and is found in the backgrounds of serial child abusers far too often to be a coincidence.


    yes (5.00 / 2) (#71)
    by TeresaInPa on Sat Jun 23, 2012 at 09:05:04 AM EST
    whenever I have said that an abuser was probably abused, people get mad at me because they think I am making excuses for a "monster".  It is hard to explain understanding how a pedophile is created and still condemning the behavior and knowing he belongs in prison.
    It is not that you have compassion for someone like Sandusky, but rather the child he was when the abuse happened to him...if indeed it did.
    Thanks to those young men, Sandusky is finally where he belongs.  I hope that any of those young men who did not come forward have seen enough of this case in the news that they will be able to see that they are not alone and that was happened to them was not okay.  I hope they get counseling and avoid passing on the pain.

    Horrible crimes inflame the passion of the jury (none / 0) (#50)
    by Payaso on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 11:10:41 PM EST
    They want to see someone punished so badly they convict the wrong person.  The key question for the jury often isn't what happened but whether the defendant did it.

    I think, Jeralyn (5.00 / 1) (#54)
    by gyrfalcon on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 11:55:28 PM EST
    that the cheering-- I know mine is-- is because somebody with a long history of hideous abuse of the most vulnerable will be stopped.

    Scott Peterson was convicted of killing his wife, but there was no indication he was a serial killer in the making.  What happened between them was between them.  I might feel satisfaction at his conviction (actually, I wasn't convinced of his guilt and certainly not of the prosecution's case), but would have no reason to cheer in relief at his conviction.  Same thing with OJ Simpson, etc.

    I have no desire for revenge on Sandusky, I just want him permanently stopped from abusing any more helpless children.  Apparently, the only way to do that is to put him in jail for the rest of his life.

    My cheers are for the fact that his toll of victims has been ended and no more children will have their psyches and their lives brutally damaged by him.

    I think that's worth a cheer. YMMV.


    This is so true (none / 0) (#48)
    by Payaso on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 11:05:52 PM EST
    Only when the trial is fair, can society trust in the integrity of the jury s verdict.

    Better that 10 guilty men go free rather than 1 innocent person convicted.


    Jeralyn's post is (none / 0) (#53)
    by Green26 on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 11:36:43 PM EST
    another terrific and instructional one.

    I have the same feelings (none / 0) (#113)
    by sj on Sun Jun 24, 2012 at 07:31:31 PM EST
    When there is a crowd cheering for an execution.
    But to cheer as if they are in a Roman coliseum instead of on the courthouse steps?  Those are the people I would find indefensible, not my clients.

    yup (5.00 / 1) (#116)
    by TeresaInPa on Sun Jun 24, 2012 at 10:33:41 PM EST
    that is even worse.  In fact it is grotesque.  The whole event from crime to punishment is so tragic. Even if you are pro death penalty, which I am not, how can you cheer as if your team just won the big game?  

    a conservative (none / 0) (#26)
    by jondee on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 10:11:50 PM EST
    saying that it's indefensible that we don't do our utmost to protect our most vulnerable..



    Everyone deserves their day in court. (none / 0) (#49)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 11:08:54 PM EST
    No doubt, criminal defense attorneys like Jeralyn and Peter have defended clients who were less-than-stellar individuals, the type of people whom they'd probably rather not bring home to meet the family. In fact, Jeralyn was a court-appointed defense counsel for Timothy McVeigh, the guy who was convicted in the 1995 Oklahoma City terror bombing.

    I consider it a great credit to their professionalism that they have the capacity to set aside their personal feelings, in order to fulfill their oaths as officers of the court and defend their clients with every available means at their disposal.

    Now, there are those people who don't particularly like what criminal defense attorneys do for a living, but so what? We need to always remember that it's because of folks like Jeralyn that we can trust the general integrity of the criminal justice system. Otherwise, absent a vigorous defense for the accused, a criminal trial will inevitably devolve into little more than a kangaroo court proceeding with a relatively foregone conclusion.



    So bizzare (none / 0) (#13)
    by Cylinder on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 09:42:26 PM EST
    That is one bizzare post-conviction statement. I take that as an admission of guilt.

    what post-conviction statement? (none / 0) (#15)
    by Jeralyn on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 09:46:43 PM EST
    by who?

    What post-conviction statement? (none / 0) (#18)
    by gyrfalcon on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 09:51:38 PM EST
    Sandusky hasn't said a word.

    Sandusky's attorney (none / 0) (#22)
    by Cylinder on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 10:00:44 PM EST
    Sorry, I could have worded that better. His attorney seemed not to question the jury decision. Instead, he congratulated the state and seemed to say the jury came to a fair decision.

    What else was he going to say? (none / 0) (#27)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 10:12:57 PM EST
    He apparently so much as admitted beforehand, even before the jury came back in, that he expected a guilty verdict. Let's face it, the preponderance of evidence against his client was close to overwhelming.

    Amendola is now (5.00 / 2) (#29)
    by gyrfalcon on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 10:14:39 PM EST
    giving a live interview with Anderson Cooper on CNN-- starting off making little jokes about this and that.

    If I ever get in trouble, please call Jeralyn for me, not this guy.


    Whew! Good thing you said something. (5.00 / 2) (#43)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 10:53:56 PM EST
    Otherwise, I was going to call those two guys who initially represented George Zimmerman.



    OK, but (none / 0) (#30)
    by gyrfalcon on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 10:16:14 PM EST
    an attorney can't make an "admission" of guilt.  Only the person accused can do that.

    The defense attorney, after an adverse verdict (none / 0) (#74)
    by Peter G on Sat Jun 23, 2012 at 10:13:39 AM EST
    is not really talking to the press.  S/he's starting to work on mitigation of punishment, with an eye on the upcoming sentencing.  The more defiant and antagonistic the judge perceives the defendant to be, the harsher the sentence.  In a case like this, counsel has to change gears and start figuring out how, on behalf of his/her client, s/he can "accept [at least a little] responsibility, as we say in sentencing law lingo.  All while not compromising any possible appeal issues. It's all part of the job, albeit another difficult part.

    Yes, and I've certainly (5.00 / 1) (#85)
    by gyrfalcon on Sat Jun 23, 2012 at 12:54:55 PM EST
    heard a lot of that over the years.  It's expected and unexceptional.

    But what I've not seen is the kind of extensive yapping about details of the case from an attorney 5 minutes post-conviction.

    If you didn't hear it, look up the transcripts or video.  An excerpt or two doesn't do it justice.  It was casual, jokey, self-referential.  His co-counsel, forget the name, was interviewed separately from a studio or something, and delivered a pretty ferocious defense of his client and discussion of grounds for appeal.  That's what I expect of a defense attorney, not Amendola's circus act.


    The mob outside the courtroom (none / 0) (#20)
    by gyrfalcon on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 09:57:23 PM EST
    did just what I did in my living room.  I did the same thing when Obama got bin Laden.

    The mob outside the courtroom also cheered when Michael Jackson was found not guilty, and when OJ Simpson was found not guilty, and when Scott Peterson was found guilty-- pretty much every high-profile case.  People cheer when they think justice has been done one way or the other.

    I think there's something a little "off" about people who hang around outside courthouses for verdicts, frankly.  But that's the "original sin," as it were, not the cheering when the verdict goes the way they wanted it to.  IMO of course.

    Hanging out at courthouses ... (none / 0) (#39)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 10:50:34 PM EST
    ... during high-profile and / or sensational trials is a time-honored American tradition, almost as old as the country itself.

    When nationally renowned criminal attorney Clarence Darrow gave his nearly five-hour summation for the defense at the close of the second trial in Honolulu's infamous "Massie Affair" back in May 1932, the Columbia Broadcasting Service did a live radio hookup for mainland audiences, which was no small feat given the relatively primitive state of broadcast technology back then.

    It proved to be a ratings coup for CBS, and marked the very first time in American history that a courtroom trial proceeding was ever broadcast live, and the crowd listening to Darrow from outside Alliiolani Hale (the former Territorial Judiciary Building, where the trial took place) was no less attentive.

    (This trial marked the final time Darrow ever argued a case in a courtroom. Despite his considerable efforts, the jury found his clients -- Bell Telephone heiress Grace Bell Fortescue and her son-in-law, Navy Lt. Thomas Massie -- guilty in the kidnapping and murder of 21-year-old Joseph Kahahawai, who had been falsely accused of sexually assaulting Massie's wife, Thalia Foretescue Massie.)


    Well, yes, but (none / 0) (#44)
    by gyrfalcon on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 10:56:50 PM EST
    there weren't three cable news networks (and three broadcast networks, probably) broadcasting the results live in Darrow's day.  In Darrow's day, you'd have to wait to learn what happened.  Today you don't.

    That's not exactly true. (none / 0) (#55)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Fri Jun 22, 2012 at 11:59:03 PM EST
    Public fascination with courtroom drama has been an integral part of our history, and 20th century technology managed to ensure that news got around pretty fast. Maybe not like today's 24/7 cable TV babblethon, but it would still surprise you how quickly people learned about big events relative to the time they occurred.

    When Pittsburgh millionaire Harry Thaw was found not guilty by reason of insanity in the 1906 shooting death of celebrated architect Sanford White in front of countless horrified patrons at the Harmonia Gardens restaurant in New York -- the first such notorious incident in the 20th century to be labeled a so-called "crime of the century" -- the news went out over the telegraph wires, and most newspapers had a print edition out within hours of the verdict.

    Regarding Darrow and the Massie-Fortescue trial, there were undersea cables already in place between Hawaii and the west coast back in 1932 to broadcast the news. A lot of people don't realize that the "Massie Affair" comprised two of the most celebrated criminal trials of its era, and it would surprise many to learn that the story's notoriety eclipsed even that of the Lindbergh baby kidnapping, which occurred contemporaneously to the events in Honolulu.

    The jury in Honolulu announced its guilty verdict at 4:00 p.m. Hawaii time on May 4, 1932, a Friday afternoon. That was 10:00 p.m. in the evening on the east coast. By the following morning, it was the front-page headline and lead, above-the-fold story in most every daily newspaper across the United States.

    But also within minutes of the jury's announcement, CBS and NBC were both on the air broadcasting the verdict across all its channels, which took most of white America by complete surprise. The reaction was swift and fiery. Early the next morning (still the middle of the night in Honolulu), listeners were tuned into NBC's popular and populist correspondent Floyd Gibbons, who'd been sent to the islands to cover Darrow and the Massie-Forescue trial, denouncing the jury verdict in vigorously racist terms, and calling for martial law to be imposed in Honolulu:

    "If President Hoover has a spinal column he will take Hawaii out of the hands of half-breed politicians that have made it a cesspool and a danger spot. Maybe you don't want white American rule in Hawaii. I do."



    There's a great book, The Victorian Internet (none / 0) (#60)
    by Towanda on Sat Jun 23, 2012 at 12:21:48 AM EST
    that informs us that we're not as nifty as we think these days.

    Almost instantaneous communication has been around for a long time -- if for only some in society then, too.  It's quite instructive to read how much of the past we repeat, just with different toys, oops, I mean with different tools.

    And the interim technologies are really fun to read about -- newsreels before tv and, in NYC, a wonderfully weird system of broadcasting baseball games before there was radio.

    That's why we see some technologies embraced so amazingly fast -- because an interim tool trained us to do so.


    Cheering (none / 0) (#106)
    by Lora on Sun Jun 24, 2012 at 09:38:01 AM EST
    Cheering when people perceive that justice has been done is not disgusting, imo.

    They were not a lynch mob.  Lynch mobs are disgusting.

    They were not rioters.  Riots are disgusting.

    They did not (I presume) throw things.  They did not boo.  While those things are not necessarily disgusting, they are inappropriate, perhaps.

    I say, let 'em cheer.


    Catharsis, that's all that comes to mind. (none / 0) (#65)
    by Radix on Sat Jun 23, 2012 at 01:27:41 AM EST
    Truthfully, there's nothing to cheer here.

    Agreed. (5.00 / 2) (#78)
    by KeysDan on Sat Jun 23, 2012 at 10:59:56 AM EST
    Perhaps the applause was a sense of relief, but this was a tragedy-- not really something about which to cheer.  

    True about Penn State, but (none / 0) (#83)
    by gyrfalcon on Sat Jun 23, 2012 at 12:45:27 PM EST
    if you read the threads here more carefully, you'd know that BTAL was referring directly only to the legal proceeding here, not the events that led up to it.

    I cheered, too. (none / 0) (#108)
    by Sweet Sue on Sun Jun 24, 2012 at 11:12:35 AM EST
    But I think you do a great disservice to assume everyone is cheering for a gladiator and not just extremely relieved that the monster that hurt them has been held accountable

    Exactly. I'm sure that the people of Bellefonte were very nervous that worship of Penn State football and "Joe Pa" would win the day and Sandusky would be in their midst again, free and clear.
    I do think that anyone cheering at an execution is disgusting but not these people, they had just been told that the operation was a success and the cancer was gone.

    cheering about a guilty verdict (none / 0) (#110)
    by Audrey on Sun Jun 24, 2012 at 01:04:01 PM EST
    I saw the cheering by people outside the courthouse as the collective sound of relief. I saw the silence of those same people, before the verdict was announced, as the collective sound of worry, that a serial pedophile might be released back into society to hurt even more young people.  I was home alone on Friday night when the verdict came in and I let out a loud cheer, not because someone had lost his freedom, but because the system worked.  

    I have a question for Jeralyn or anyone who might know .... why does it take so long for sentencing to occur?  I have wondered about this for some time.  I heard on ABC that Jerry Sandusky will not likely be sentenced for three months.  Is it because of the seriousness of the crime?  

    Sentencing is set (none / 0) (#114)
    by Jeralyn on Sun Jun 24, 2012 at 07:38:43 PM EST
    a few months after the verdict or plea in most cases because the Probation Department has to do a comprehensive report for the Judge recommending a sentence.

    In sex assault cases like Sandusky's, it can take longer because he needs to be evaluated by the state Sexual Offenders Assessment Board.

    The SOAB assessment process is initiated when the sentencing court makes the request. Pennsylvania Law requires that after a conviction for a Megan's Law offense, but prior to sentencing, the court shall order the individual to be assessed by the Board to determine if the individual meets the legal criteria to be designated a sexually violent predator.

    Thank you, Jeralyn (none / 0) (#115)
    by Audrey on Sun Jun 24, 2012 at 09:26:39 PM EST
    I appreciate the explanation, as well as the link.