A former Catholic priest who now heads a charity that assists sexual abuse victims said Thursday his group is representing a previously unknown victim of Jerry Sandusky.
Robert Hoatson, co-founder and president of New Jersey-based Road to Recovery Inc., said the man claims he was abused by Sandusky about 25 years ago, when he was 15, visiting for a summer football camp.
The man, now about 40 years old, is currently incarcerated in a Massachusetts state prison “for serious crimes,” and does not want to be identified, because he fears repercussions in the prison, Hoatson said.
Speaking outside Beaver Stadium, Hoatson said he hopes the man, who is set for release in August, could tell his story then.
“He was invited to come to Penn State in the summer for camp to hone his football skill,” Hoatson said. “He met Jerry Sandusky and his life spiraled out of control from then on. As a result of his meeting with the monster from Happy Valley, Jerry Sandusky, his life is ruined.”
Sandusky was convicted in June of meeting young boys through his charity, The Second Mile, as early as 1998, and sexually abusing them, sometimes on the Penn State campus.
The alleged victim’s allegations, however, occurred sometime in the 1980s. Hoatson said he thinks an investigation into Sandusky’s actions should go back even earlier.
Hoatson, a New Jersey resident, was in State College Thursday calling for harsher sanctions and penalties against Penn State.
Sandusky’s conviction and the Louis Freeh report, which condemned top university officials for allegedly covering up the abuse, led to the NCAA levying unprecedented sanctions against the university Monday.
Hoatson, however, believes the university should go further, and called on leaders to “categorically drop football.”
“There is no need for it to be played,” he said. “It’s time the university step up and discipline itself. We had a serial pedophile who was protected by a culture and an institution that promoted football.”
Matt Carroll can be reached at 231-4631. Follow him on Twitter @Carrollreporter