Some of Sandusky's jurors hoping for life sentence

Some of Sandusky's jurors hoping for life sentence

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) Jerry Sandusky should be sent to prison for life when a judge sentences him Tuesday, according to several of the jurors who convicted the former Penn State assistant coach of molesting several boys over a period of years.

None of the jurors interviewed by The Associated Press said they have had second thoughts about their June verdict, and several plan to attend the sentencing.

``There isn't a sentence that I believe is harsh enough for what he has done and how it has affected the university,'' said Joan Andrews, a juror who has worked for Penn State for 41 years and held football season tickets since 1969. ``I don't think there's been one individual in this entire campus that has not been affected by this.''

Four jurors said they plan to be in the courtroom when Sandusky, 68, learns the penalty for sexually abusing boys he met through a charity for at-risk children. Sandusky's own attorney expects his client to be handed a long sentence from Judge John Cleland after conviction on 45 counts.

Although a list of jurors has not been released by Cleland, the AP was able to contact five of them. They said they recently received a letter from the court informing them about the sentencing and offering to have a court official meet them outside the courthouse.

A court system spokesman said the jurors are guaranteed a seat but won't necessarily be sitting together.

Only one of the five, retired Penn State soil sciences professor Daniel D. Fritton, said he would not attend.

``I'd just like to stay out of the limelight, for one thing,'' Fritton said. ``I figure I could read in the paper what happens.''

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.''

Through a relative, juror Ann T. Van Kuren said she also plans to attend.

Barnes and Harper both said they hoped to learn more about what Penn State officials did or did not do in 1998 and 2001 after getting complaints about Sandusky showering with boys. That was a major theme of the report issued to Penn State this summer by Louis Freeh, the former FBI director, and is likely also to arise during civil litigation by Sandusky's victims against the university.

``We don't know the whole story to this whole thing yet,'' said Barnes, a Nittany Lions fan who felt so strongly that Joe Paterno's statue should remain in place that she went to the scene outside Beaver Stadium the day it was removed in July, about a month after the verdict. ``I just felt like they jumped ship, they didn't do the right thing, that they needed more information. What's going to happen if Curley and Schultz are found not guilty?''

Tim Curley, the school's athletic director on leave, and Gary Schultz, a retired vice president, are awaiting trial on charges they did not properly report suspected abuse and lied to the grand jury that investigated Sandusky. Paterno, the school's Hall of Fame coach, was fired after Sandusky was arrested in November and died of lung cancer in January.

The names of Curley, Schultz and even Paterno did not come up in deliberations, Andrews said.

``I don't know what to think about Curley and Schultz,'' she said. ``I think Joe Paterno was and is and has been falsely accused of many things. I don't think the man was informed of the detail for him to understand how serious this was.''

Sandusky's sentencing on Tuesday will begin with Cleland determining whether he qualifies as a sexually violent predator, a status that would require lifetime registration if he is ever paroled.

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Game 75 Capitals at Canadiens Date, Time, How to Watch, Game Thread

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Game 75 Capitals at Canadiens Date, Time, How to Watch, Game Thread

What: Washington Capitals vs. Montreal Canadiens

Where: Bell Centre, Montreal, Quebec, Canada

When: 7:00 p.m. ET

How to Watch: Capitals-Canadiens will be broadcast on NBC Sports Washington.

Live Stream: You can watch the Capitals-Canadiens game on NBC Sports' live stream page.


The Capitals (43-24-7) take on the Canadiens (27-36-12) Saturday, March 24 at 7:00 p.m. ET in Montreal.


The Capitals-Canadiens game will be broadcast on NBC Sports Washington. Coverage kicks off on NBC Sports Washington with Capitals FaceOff at 6:00 p.m. followed by Caps GameTime at 6:30 p.m. Stay with NBC Sports Washington after the game for Caps Extra and Caps Overtime at 10:00 p.m. for postgame coverage. (NBC Sports Washington channel Finder)

6:00 p.m. — Caps FaceOff
6:30 p.m. — Caps GameTime
7:00 p.m. — Capitals at Canadiens
9:30 p.m. — Caps Extra
10:00 p.m. — Caps Overtime


You can watch the Capitals-Canadiens game on NBC Sports' live stream page.


Use the comment section below to discuss the game action with other Capitals fans. 

For all the latest Caps coverage, follow Capitals Insider Tarik El-Bashir, Capitals correspondent JJ Regan and the NBC Sports Capitals account on Twitter. Be sure check out our Capitals page and NBC Sports Washington's Facebook page.

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Need to Know: The Redskins week that was—D-line scoop, Alex Smith's big deal

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Need to Know: The Redskins week that was—D-line scoop, Alex Smith's big deal

Here is what you need to know on this Saturday, March 24, 33 days before the NFL draft.  

The Redskins week that was

A look at some of the most popular posts and hottest topics of the week on Real Redskins and NBC Sports Washington.

Free agency update: What's next for the Redskins on the D-line? The Redskins have been casting out lines for defensive linemen since before free agency officially started but they haven’t been able to reel one in. Part of the issue might be that they know that Vita Vea and Da’Ron Payne are likely to be available in the draft. They have to balance spending big on a lineman vs. being able to get one pretty cheap for the next five years.

Redskins make a D-line contract change, gain roster flexibility—Speaking of the D-line, the team negotiated the removal of a salary guarantee for one player to give themselves more flexibility when it comes time to cut the roster down to 53 in September. See the post for details.

Redskins guarantee Alex Smith a whopping $71 million in new contract—In the words of Joe Biden, this is a big f-----g deal. It showed that the Redskins aren’t afraid to pay a quarterback big money if they think it’s the right guy. It should be noted that whether or not they chose the right guy is something that remains to be seen. Although the post shows that it’s plausible for the Redskins to terminate the deal after three years, I anticipate Smith playing out at least four if not all five years of the contract.

Redskins add another ex-Cowboy as they sign Scandrick—Orlando Scandrick has struggled with injuries the past few years and Redskins fans did not greet the news of his signing with great enthusiasm, to say the least. To point out the bright side, his contract is not pricey by NFL terms ($2.6 million cap hit this year, no guaranteed money beyond a $1 million signing bonus) and from what I have been able to gather it’s possible that change of scenery might give him a boost for a year or two.

Tweet of the week

Well before free agency started, I wrote that the Redskins’ top priorities in free agency should be to get extensions done for Smith, Brandon Scherff, and Jamison Crowder. They should have about $15 million to work with after a few more free agent signings and that would be plenty to get all of those extensions done. And if they do score a big free agent signing, it would be worth it to restructure the contract of someone like Ryan Kerrigan to get them done.

Stay up to date on the Redskins. Rich Tandler covers the team 365 days a year. Like his Facebook page and follow him on Twitter @TandlerNBCS.


Days until:

—Offseason workouts begin (4/16) 23
—Training camp starts (approx. 7/26) 124
—2018 NFL season starts (9/9) 169

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