Ex-Penn State coach Jerry Sandusky will face accusers in court tomorrow
(CBS) BELLEFONTE, Pa. - For the first time Tuesday, several alleged victims are expected to testify and confront former Penn State football coach Jerry Sandusky in a preliminary hearing.
The Wall Street Journal reports the child sex-abuse case against Sandusky is moving Tuesday to Bellefonte, Penn., where a prosecutor must convince a judge that the case is worth taking to trial. In Pennsylvania and Connecticut, unlike all other states, grand juries do not have the power to indict suspect.
The prosecution doesn't need to persuade the jury the ex-coach is guilty; they must only give enough evidence to convince the judge the case should go forward. However, if the prosecution holds back too much, the case could be dismissed.
Officials describe preparations for the case as a "once-in-a-lifetime event." A spokesman for the Pennsylvania state court system James Koval calls it their "O.J. trial. "
Jerry Sandusky is charged with sexually assaulting 10 boys over a 15-year period. Eight of these allegations were detailed in a grand-jury report last month. The sex scandal led to the ousting of legendary football coach Joe Paterno and university president Graham Spanier.
Lawyers for Sandusky's alleged victims say their clients want to take the stand. Jeffrey P. Fitz, who represents one of the eight alleged victims from the grand jury's report said, "My client is ready to testify."
Sandusky's lawyer, Joseph Amendola of State College, Pa., said he definitely expected the case to go to trial.
"We anticipate many of the charges will be held for court, not because Jerry is guilty, but only because this is a probable-cause proceeding at which credibility is not in play," he said.
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