Sandusky’s trial will be happening sometime this spring, maybe the summer, and no doubt, the whole country will be glued to their t.v.’s watching. It isn’t a stretch to say this trial may garner more attention than O.J. Simpson’s trial.
Absent some damning physical evidence, like DNA, pictures or video, the entire case hinges on credibility. The outcome of this case will depend on the credibility of every witness, every victim, and Sandusky, if he takes the stand. Here are three predictions about his upcoming trial.
1. Jerry Sandusky’s prior media interviews will be used against him, regardless of whether he takes the stand or not
Jerry Sandusky’s PR attempt to change public opinion about him by talking to the press backfired. Under Pennsylvania rules of evidence at trial, a defendant’s statements to the press about the case are fair game at trial. Sandusky doesn’t even have to take the stand. His odd, bungled response to the question about whether he was attracted to boys may very well sink him at this trial.
2. Mike McCreary won’t play a big role
McCreary’s testimony isn’t crucial to the prosecution’s case against Sandusky. There are 11 victims, with multiple counts of abuse. McCreary allegedly saw just one of those instances of abuse against one of those 11 victims.
Even if McCreary goes south or isn’t credible, Sandusky could still be found guilty of each and every count. This case is and has always been about Sandusky’s crimes against the victims, and those victims’ testimony is what, I predict, will lead to a conviction or a mid-trial plea agreement.
If anything, McCreary’s testimonial is crucial in the civil cases against Penn State, because what McCreary told school administrators and when is the crux of the civil case. His testimony will also be crucial in the criminal cases against the school administrators, Tim Schultz and Graham Spanier.
3. Once Jerry Sandusky hears or sees the number of victims ready to testify against him, he’ll take a plea
One of the reasons sexual predators commit their heinous crimes is a mistaken belief that they control the victim(s). I’ve seen this time and time again during my career as a sex crimes prosecutor and now civil attorney. However, when the victims actually testify in open court, many sexual abusers realize that they no longer have the control they thought they did.