Editor’s Note: As is commonly the case with serial abusers disguised as professionals, predatory paedophiles like Jerry Sandusky relied heavily on the silence of his colleagues and sycophantic sports supporters who worshiped his high-profile job – in order to hide his heinous crimes.
June 18, 2012
BELLEFONTE, PA. — Sound problems have plagued the Jerry Sandusky trial. The defense attorney struggles to hear witnesses over the throb of the ceiling fans. The judge, concerned, has urged members of the jury to tell him if they can’t hear.
But the trial, in which Sandusky faces 52 counts related to child sex abuse, has exposed deeper problems with communication. Lurking throughout this case is the sound of silence.
For years, according to testimony last week, people who had suspicions about Sandusky said nothing, or didn’t follow up, or convinced themselves that what they were seeing was harmless.
Joe Miller, a wrestling coach, testified that one night he stumbled upon Sandusky and a small boy lying face to face on a mat in a weight room. Sandusky quickly declared that they were practicing wrestling moves, Miller said. After telling Sandusky to turn out the lights and lock up, Miller had a moment of doubt, he said. But he reassured himself:
“Well, it’s Jerry. Jerry Sandusky. He’s a saint. What he’s doing with these kids is fantastic.”