The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

October 11, 2012

Deserving punishment for an evil man

The Tribune-Democrat

— What Jerry Sandusky did to unsuspecting, wide-eyed and naive youngsters was the work of a sick, despicable individual.

His actions and words in the hours before and as he stood in front of a Centre County judge for sentencing only served to verify his sickness, his addiction, his complete lack of remorse.

Even as his victims talked about horrible flashbacks, sleepless nights and feelings of shame, Sandusky denied guilt on his own part.

In all probability, the former football coach will spend his remaining days behind bars, as he should, given that he was handed a 30-to-60-year sentence.

Offered the chance to speak in court on Tuesday, Sandusky refused to budge, instead continuing to paint himself as the victim, never once apologizing for his loathsome acts.

“In all probability, he sexually molested hundreds of children over the course of decades,” said Mitchell Garabedian, a Boston attorney who represents a 40-year-old man who says he was molested by Sandusky as a 16-year-old high school football player.

“He was cunning, clever and conniving.”

As Sandusky was carted back to prison to remain forever, he left behind broken lives, shattered dreams, a tarnished university and legalities that will take years to sort through.

It would be grand to conclude that with his sentencing comes an end to the blackest of days for a still-great university. But with more criminal charges, lawsuits sure to total millions and severe penalties against its football program still years ahead, that would be way too premature.

Most important is the fact that this ugly man apparently will never have another opportunity to molest, fondle and rape young people.

He will never again be able to use the guise of an acclaimed youth charity to prey on the innocent.

Jerry Sandusky got what he deserved in a court of law, and hopefully his now-grown-up victims and their parents will finally get their due in some semblance of closure.

It’s hard to imagine that one man was able to wreak so much havoc on so many lives and so many organizations.

The most we can all hope for is that an entire nation has learned a valuable lesson and gotten the message.

Hopefully, the next time a youngster is abused, no one will stand by and wait for someone else to speak up and take action.

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