Sandusky Case Resources and Trial Packet

PSU Administrators Preliminary Hearing – Day 1 (PDF), (TXT)

PSU Administrators Hearing- Day 2 (PDF), (TXT)

Sandusky-courthouse-exit

On trial: Former Penn State defensive coach Jerry Sandusky leaves the Centre County courthouse in Bellefonte after court proceedings concluded June 11, 2012.

The trial for Jerry Sandusky began June 5, 2012. The former Penn State University football coach was charged with 48 counts of child sexual abuse involving 10 boys during a 15-year period. 

Our Response to the Sandusky Case

NSVRC's Statement on Sandusky Sentencing

Letters to Hon. John M. Cleland from Jerry and Dorothy Sandusky now published.

PCAR, NSVRC respond to verdict in Sandusky trial

Here is a complete breakdown of the charges.

The National Sexual Violence Resource Center, in partnership with the Pennsylvania Coalition Against Rape (PCAR) has created a resource page with tools to help respond to the case and to assist with creating opportunities for talking about the prevention of child sexual abuse.

Communities are invited to use and adapt NSVRC sample letters to the editor.

Read NSVRC bloggers talk about the Light at the end of the Tunnel.

Read news from around the country in our regularly updated News from the Field.

For a review and response to key statements made during the trial, go to the PCAR Blogroll.

Additional responses below.

Child Sexual Abuse Conference: Traumatic Impact, Prevention, and Intervention

October 29-30, 2012: Joint Conference with PSU

PCAR and NSVRC will be sponsoring a conference related to child sexual abuse prevention. Registration is now open.

October 9, 2012 NSVRC Statement about Sandusky Sentencing

August 2, 2012 PCAR/NSVRC in the Patriot-News

4,000 Penn State employees have been trained about obligations to report suspected abuse since November.

June 23, 2012: NSVRC in The Patriot-News

NSVRC was interviewed by Diana Fishlock  a reporter for The Patriot-News about Resources to get help for suspected child abuse.

June 22, 2012: NSVRC in The Patriot-News

NSVRC was interviewed by Ivey DeJesus a reporter for The Patriot-News about the verdict in the Sandusky trial.

June 21, 2012: NSVRC in York Daily Record

NSVRC and PCAR were interviewed by Mike Argento a columnist for York Daily Record during the Sandusky trial.

June 19, 2012: NSVRC interviewed

NSVRC was interviewed by Joel Achenbach a reporter for The Washington Post during the Sandusky trial.

June 13, 2012: NSVRC in The Patriot-News

NSVRC was interviewed by Charles Thompson a reporter for The Patriot-News during the Sandusky trial.

June 22: PCAR/NSVRC Joint Statement

Issued a joint statement about the guilty verdict in the Jerry Sandusky trial.

June 18: PCAR in Penn Staters Mag

PCAR’s Kristen Houser was interview in the Penn Stater Magazine for an article entitled, Sandusky Trial: Breaking Down Week 1.

June 15: NSVRC on Fox 43

NSVRC’s Tracy Cox was interviewed live in studio by Fox 43’s morning show to discuss the importance of expert witness testimony and preventing child sexual abuse. Watch the video.

June 13, 2012: NSVRC interviewed

NSVRC was interviewed by Sylvia Kurtz, a criminal investigator and writer, during the Sandusky trial for upcoming book about the case.

June 13, 2012: NSVRC in The Patriot-News

Regarding victim reactions and the various details given in victims’ testimonies The Patriot-News ran an article entitled, Jerry Sandusky trial: Man, 18, known as Victim 1, looks alleged abuser in the eye on witness stand. NSVRC was interviewed for this story. To read it, visit:

June 11: NSVRC on Pennlive.com

NSVRC staff was featured in a photo gallery on pennlive.com during the Sandusky trial.

June 11-22: Centre County Courthouse

PCAR and NSVRC was on location for the opening days of the Jerry Sandusky trial at the Centre County Courthouse in Bellefonte, Pa. NSVRC was in the courtroom, while PCAR worked on live tweeting, blogging and media interviews. Among the interviews, CNN, NBC Nightly News, Washington Post, Pennlive.com, The Patriot-News. View the blog posts.
 

June 8: NSVRC distributes media packet

The NSVRC media packet was printed and will be distributed this month through a national mailing to media outlets, as well as distributed to journalists covering the Sandusky trial in Bellefonte.

June 6: Joint Statement on Victim Privacy

PCAR and NSVRC released a statement with The National Center for Victims of Crime and the National Crime Victim Law Institute urging the media to not disclose victims’ identities during the Sandusky trial.

June 5: PSU Trainings

PCAR continued training PSU employees. Training will be provided to those who are considered “mandated reporters” by Pennsylvania law. In the future, Penn State will have “permissive” reporters — Penn State employees who are not mandated by law to report abuse — trained on the ways to recognize and report suspected child abuse through the online training in the fall.

June 5: Interview in Philadelphia Weekly

PCAR’s Diane Moyer is interviewed for Philadelphia Weekly blog entitled, ‘No Legal Basis’ for Protecting Alleged Victims’ Identity in Jerry Sandusky Trial Is Misleading.

June 5: Interview on Pennlive.com

PCAR’s Kristen Houser talks about the importance of protecting the identities of sexual assault victims during the opening day of the Jerry Sandusky trial at the Centre County Courthouse in Bellefonte, Pa.  To view the video, visit http://tinyurl.com/7488k2t

June 5, 2012: Media Packet Online

NSVRC created a Media Packet for journalists reporting on sexual violence. The packet contains statistics and 6 resources that answer common questions about sexual violence. This packet can be used and referenced in working with media outlets to provide mindful and informed coverage of the Sandusky Case.

June 5, 2012: NSVRC & ATSA release editorial

In collaboration with ATSA (Association for the Treatment of Sexual Abusers), NSVRC developed an editorial responding to the Sandusky Case urging people to use the spotlight of the Sandusky trial to shift the focus to prevention.

June 4: Letters to the editor campaign

NSVRC and the Association for the Treatment of Sexual Abuser’s (ATSA) prevention committee created 4 sample Letters to the Editor that can be used to spark some different conversations related to the Sandusky trial. The letters can be personalized and submitted to local newspapers.

 
NSVRC releases a brief statement in response to the court’s decision to deny the alleged victims in the Jerry Sandusky case the opportunity to use pseudonyms during the trial.

May 30, 2012: Sandusky Hearing

PCAR attended a pre-trial hearing for Jerry Sandusky in Bellefonte. After the hearing, PCAR’s
Kristen Houser was interviewed by The Altoona Mirror  and ABC 27 News.
 
May 29, 2012: Amicus Brief
PCAR and NSVRC sign on an Amicus Brief with The National Center for Victims of Crime, National Crime Victim Law Institute, The Pennsylvania Coalition Against Domestic Violence and The Victim Rights Law Center urging that victims’ identities be protected during the Sandusky trial.

 

May 29, 2012: Press Release
PCAR and NSVRC issued a joint press release announcing the Amicus Brief that’s advocating for the protection of victims’ identities during the Sandusky trial.

 

Regarding subpoenas and victim-blaming tactics, an editorial by PCAR/NSVRC entitled Stop the victim-blaming tactics in Jerry Sandusky case ran in The Patriot-News.

 

May 9, 2012: Media Advisory
In light of developments and victim-blaming tactics in the Jerry Sandusky investigation, PCAR and NSVRC issued a media advisory entitled Sandusky lawyer continues to criminalize victims.
 
May 9, 2012: Editorial
Regarding subpoenas in the Jerry Sandusky investigation, PCAR wrote an editorial entitled Sandusky’s lawyer resorts to victim-blaming tactics and submitted it to The Patriot-News.
 
 
May 9, 2012: CBS21 Interview
In light of developments regarding subpoenas and victim-blaming in the Jerry Sandusky investigation, PCAR is featured in story entitled Pennsylvania Coalition against Rape furious with the tactics of Sandusky’s lawyers.
 
 
May 9, 2012: Pathways Conference
PCAR was part of a panel discussion entitled The Institutionalization of Sexual Violence: Panel Discussion and Tools for Intervention during the 12th Annual Pathways for Victim Services Conference.
 
 
NSVRC was interviewed and quoted for story entitled, Jerry Sandusky accusers outraged by subpoenas may get help from national group.
 
 
PCAR staff rallied at Beaver Stadium in State College to collect money to support services across Pennsylvania and the HERO project. Nearly $1,200 was raised.
 
 
April 18, 2012: PSU Training begins
PCAR began training PSU employees. Training will be provided to those who are considered “mandated reporters” by Pennsylvania law. In the future, Penn State will have “permissive” reporters — Penn State employees who are not mandated by law to report abuse — trained on the ways to recognize and report suspected child abuse through the online training in the fall.
 
April 4, 2012: Award presentation
NSVRC presents Visionary Voice Awards to The Patriot-News’ reporter Sara Ganim and editor David Newhouse for their reporting of the Jerry Sandusky case. Weeks later, The Patriot News wins the Pulitzer for their coverage of the Sandusky case.
 
March 29, 2012: Press release
NSVRC issues a press release announcing the winners of the 2012 Visionary Voice Awards which includes The Patriot-News’ reporter Sara Ganim and editor David Newhouse for their reporting of the Jerry Sandusky case.
 
NSVRC is interviewed and quoted in article entitled, Advocates want information on firm Penn State hired to counsel Jerry Sandusky’s alleged victims.
 
 
March 12, 2012: Press Release
PCAR issues a press release entitled, Latest Sandusky hearing proves need for expert witness testimony.
 
March 2012: National Plan
Working with the National Coalition to Prevent Child Sexual Abuse and Exploitation, NSVRC designed and released the 2012 edition of the National Plan to Prevent the Sexual Abuse and Exploitation of Children.

 

February 2012: The Resource
NSVRC releases the Spring/Summer 2012 edition of its semiannual newsletter The Resource. Articles about child sexual abuse were included in the issue, and it featured the Jerry Sandusky case on the cover.
 
February 2012: Award nominees
PCAR nominated The Patriot-News’ reporter Sara Ganim and editor David Newhouse for Visionary Voice Awards for their reporting of the Jerry Sandusky case. Each year, the NSVRC offers the Visionary Voice award, presented in conjunction with Sexual Assault Awareness Month (SAAM) each April, to recognize the creativity and hard work of individuals around the country who have demonstrated outstanding work to end sexual violence.
 
January 2012: PSU meetings begin
PCAR and NSVRC met staff at Penn State to discuss partnership, identity collaborative opportunities and form committees
 
January 2012: Ribbon stickers
NSVRC designed a sticker promotional card with an awareness ribbon on it. A second one was released in March with a two-toned ribbon sticker on it to include child abuse.
 
January 19, 2012: York dispatch Editorial
PCAR’s Chief Executive Officer Delilah Rumburg received praise in a recent York Dispatch editorial for her appointment to the Task Force on Child Protection. Gov. Tom Corbett selected Rumburg and 10 others to serve on the task force.
 
January 20, 2012: Collaboration
NSVRC wrote letter to coalitions announcing our collaboration with 1in6, NBC and the Joyful Heart Foundation, NSVRC is encouraging people to watch an upcoming episode of Law & Order: Special Victims Unit. On Wednesday, January 25, NBC will re-air an episode entitled, Personal Fouls, which tells the story of men who are sexually abused by a basketball coach. Also see the PDF version.
 
December 12, 2011: Joint Statement
NSVRC and the Association for the Treatment of Sexual Abusers (ATSA) issued a joint statement entitled, Answers to questions about recent child sexual abuse cases.
 
Early December 2011: Steering Committee
PCAR and NSVRC meet with Penn State officials to talk about partnership
 
December 1, 2011: Press release
PCAR and NSVRC issued a joint press release announcing the partnership with Penn State entitled, Sexual assault experts partner with Penn State.
 
December 1, 2011: Article in The Patriot-News
Article talks about PCAR and NSVRC’s partnership with Penn State entitled, Rape-prevention groups team with Penn State, say education can halt abuse.
 
December 1, 2011: three-Part online series
NSVRC posted the first part of a three-part series by Jackson Katz, Ph.D., on bystander intervention and the lessons from the PSU sexual abuse case. Each Thursday in December a post appeared.
 
 
November 2011: Editorial
PCAR issued an OpEd entitled, In Sandusky case, don’t lose sight of survivors of sexual abuse.
 
 
November 15, 2011: Editorial
NSVRC worked with Kelly Parsley, victim advocate and Penn State graduate, former Vice-Chair and Chair of NSVRC’s Advisory Council, on an OpEd submitted to The Patriot-News. The OpEd was entitled, Answers are simple in PSU case.
 
November 12, 2011: Canning at PSU football game
PCAR and Prevent Child Abuse Pennsylvania teamed up at Beaver Stadium in State College to collect money to support services to victims of child sexual assault across Pennsylvania and the HERO project. Nearly $12,000 was raised to support these efforts.
 
November 11, 2011: Vigil in State College
PCAR staff attended a candlelight vigil on the Penn State campus for sexual abuse victims.
 
 
November 10, 2011: Press Conference in State College
NSVRC and PCAR held a press conference in State College.
 
November 10, 2011: WITF interview
PCAR’s Kristen Houser was mentioned in WITF’s article, The young victims of sexual abuse; hotline numbers in article.
 
November 7, 2011: Letter
PCAR wrote a letter to Penn State University’s Board of Trustees commending them about creating a task force to conduct an independent review of the University’s policies and procedures.
 
November 7, 2011: Press release
PCAR issued a press release entitled, PCAR offers support to Penn State Board of Trustees.
 
November 6, 2011: Interview with CNN
PCAR’s Kristen Houser was interviewed by CNN.
 

 


Prevention Letters Campaign

The NSVRC is working with the Association for the Treatment of Sexual Abuser’s (ATSA) prevention committee to attempt to steer some of the media coverage in the upcoming Jerry Sandusky trial into discussions about prevention and things we can do in our own organizations and communities.  We want to use this opportunity to educate and activate people – and give them some ideas of proactive steps they can take to prevent child sexual abuse.   We would like to see a grass roots effort of prevention-focused letters to the editor throughout the country that may spark some different conversations than just the legal aspects of this particular case.  We have prepared four sample letters to make it easy for people to participate.  They are short, since many newspapers have a 250 word limit on letters to the editor.  You can select one as-is to submit to your local paper, edit one to better fit what you want to emphasize, or write one of your own.  Feel free to forward this to others who may be interested in participating.   The NSVRC has other information related to this and similar cases. Contact us at resources@nsvrc.org if we can assist with your communication efforts. 


Sample Letter to the Editor #1

(252 words)

 

Date:

Dear Editor:

 

Jerry Sandusky, Penn State’s former football coach faces over 52 counts of sexual abuse against 10 boys over 15 years. I understand these allegations are hard to believe. I understand that an indictment of this magnitude would be a tragedy in any organization, but Penn State and particularly, their football team was known for all-American values of honor, integrity, and hope.

 

Jerry Sandusky deeply violated those values if these allegations are true.  And Penn State may have violated those values as well because they allegedly failed to report these sexual abuse allegations to authorities.

 

It would be easy to end the story with the firing of key university staff and a quick conviction of Sandusky.  It would be easy to say that we should always report suspicions of abuse, even if we are unsure of what really happened or whether the actions were sexually abusive.  In the wake of all that has appeared in the media, we must take a deeper look at our own responsibilities.  

 

This tragedy is a wake-up call to every organization that works with youth. I hope that such organizations will educate themselves, the families and the children about child sexual abuse.  I encourage every organization to understand what they must do to respond to sexual abuse, to use effective screening tools and to put policies into place about appropriate touch and conduct.  I hope all of us will learn from Penn State and ask questions to help put effective policies in place before any child is harmed.

 

Sincerely,

 

[Put Your Name and Contact info Here]

 

 

For additional resources, visit the following websites:

 

www.nsvrc.org  The National Sexual Violence Resource Center

www.atsa.com   The Association for the Treatment of Sexual Abusers

www.preventtogether.org  The National Coalition to Prevent Child Sexual Abuse and Exploitation


Sample Letter to the Editor #2

 

(233 words)

 

Date:

Dear Editor:

 

I have spent most of my career working to stop sexual violence.  I do this difficult work by counseling and advocating for victims – girls, boys, women, and men who have been sexually abused – and often by people they love and trust. When I read about Jerry Sandusky, it showed me people continue to have stereotypes about individuals who sexually abuse, and the characteristics of this case really challenge those stereotypes.

 

As the country watches the case unfold, I urge parents, families, and organizations to talk about what they need to do to make our communities safer for children.  I urge adults to find ways to get involved and learn the scope of sexual abuse. We know it takes a lot of strength to come forward. We can imagine that we would have done everything we could to protect these children.  Now we have the opportunity to learn from this experience.

 

We don’t have to wait. 

 

Start with opening the lines of communication. We can ask our church, synagogue, schools and other organizations if they have policies to protect children, if staff is aware of these policies, and if they know how to implement them on a day-to-day basis. Let's use the Sandusky trial as a "rallying point" to ACT and to begin conversations with every local organization about what we can all do to make our communities safer for our children and teens.

 

Sincerely,

 

[Put Your Name and Contact info Here]

 

For additional resources, visit the following websites:

 

www.nsvrc.org   The National Sexual Violence Resource Center

www.atsa.com    The Association for the Treatment of Sexual Abusers

www.preventtogether.org The National Coalition to Prevent Child Sexual Abuse and Exploitation


Sample Letter to the Editor #3

(250 words)

 

Date:

Dear Editor:

 

 

All the stories in the news lately about child sexual abuse make me wonder if I was paying attention to the wrong things when my children were growing up.  I was hyper-vigilant in malls, crowds, and public restrooms.  I kept them close to me and watched carefully when strangers approached or seemed to notice them.   I honestly thought that I knew what a sex offender would look like or how they would behave.  They would probably look mean, unkempt, suspicious and shifty.  

 

I generally relaxed, however, when my children were with a teacher, coach, babysitter, or neighbor.  Someone who I knew or who was responsible for caring for children would not be capable of abusing them.  But since the Jerry Sandusky and Penn State case came into the news, I’m starting to get a different understanding of the dynamics of child sexual abuse.  I know that some people who sexually abuse a child do not fit my stereotype.

 

I’m also starting to understand that this is something we can prevent (or at least respond to more proactively).  Imagine if we begin to ask different questions of the people who care for our children.    Is there a policy in your organization to protect children from sexual abuse?  Do you know how to report sexual abuse?  What do you do if someone is not quite appropriate around the children or teens in your organization?  This case has opened my eyes and I, for one, am going to start asking different questions now.       

      

Sincerely,

 

[Put Your Name and Contact info Here]

 

For additional resources, visit the following websites:

 

www.nsvrc.org  The National Sexual Violence Resource Center

www.atsa.com  The Association for the Treatment of Sexual Abusers

www.preventtogether.org The National Coalition to Prevent Child Sexual Abuse and Exploitation


Sample Letter to the Editor #4

(239 words)

 

Date:

Dear Editor:

 

 

The Jerry Sandusky case is coming to trial and we will soon see how the process plays out in this situation.   For some reason, this particular story has captured the attention of the public in a way that few others have.  Is it because well-known people are involved?  Is it because of the association with a prestigious University that prides itself on integrity?  Is it because of the connection with a respected charity whose founder may have had ulterior motives for serving disadvantaged children? Is it because there was an apparent eye witness to one of the events? 

 

Whatever the reasons – the scrutiny is welcome.  Far too many children are sexually abused every day and most of them do not get their day in court.

 

Hopefully some positive things will come from this painful set of circumstances – maybe more victims will feel safe enough to come forward; maybe even some people who have abused children, or are thinking of hurting a child will have the courage to seek help; maybe organizations who work with children will strengthen their safety policies and procedures; and maybe some of us will act more quickly and more decisively when we suspect that something may not be right.  If any of those things happen, then something positive will have come from this tragedy – I know that I am going to begin to be more active and support activities that work toward a safer community.    

 

Sincerely,

 

[Put Your Name and Contact info Here]

 

For additional resources, visit the following websites:

 

www.nsvrc.org   The National Sexual Violence Resource Center

www.atsa.com  The Association for the Treatment of Sexual Abusers

www.preventtogether.org The National Coalition to Prevent Child Sexual Abuse and Exploitation

 

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