The Jerry Sandusky case could be handed off to the jury as early as the end of the week, another sign that the trial is moving along at a speedy pace.
Senior Judge John Cleland told the jurors they’ll be sequestered while deliberating.
On Monday, he said he expects the defense to rest its case around noon Wednesday. The prosecution closed its case Monday morning, handing the trial off to the defense.
Cleland said the state could present any rebuttal that it has Wednesday afternoon. Closing arguments would take place Thursday.
Cleland did caution that, “This is all very tentative.”
He went on to tell the jury that they’ll be sequestered at a local hotel during deliberations. That means they won’t be able to use cellphones or telephones or watch television.
“You’ll be confined so you’re excluded from any kind of outside influences,” Cleland said.
He said they will have a few days to make deliberations, and he’ll let them know a day ahead so they can pack.
“Once you begin deliberating, the schedule is yours,” Cleland said.
Citing technical issues regarding some of the witnesses, Cleland put court in recess about 2 p.m.
That made for a short day for jurors, who came into the courtroom about 10 a.m. after Cleland listened to attorneys for the prosecution and defense argue about whether certain charges should be dismissed.
Cleland ruled against the defense.
Defense attorney Karl Rominger argued that the date range for some of the charges was too vague. In one case, for example, the abuse allegedly occurred over a four year time frame. In another instance, Rominger argued some charges are age-based and the age of alleged victim No. 2, whom Mike McQueary testified he saw in a sexual position with Sandusky in the shower, should be dropped because it wouldn’t be appropriate to allow the jury to speculate on the boy’s age.
After listening to arguments from both sides, Cleland said while he had been concerned at one time about the lack of time specificity in the charges, the prosecution amended its bill of particulars enough that he thinks it meets the standards.
He also said he thought there was sufficient evidence for the jury to assess the age of alleged victim No. 2.
Prosecutors did drop one count related to alleged victim No. 7, bringing down the number Sandusky faces to 51. Prosecutor Frank Fina said the statute didn’t apply at the time of the alleged abuse.
Anne Danahy can be reached at 231-4648. Follower her on Twitter @AnneDanahy