The state’s Superior Court will hear convicted pedophile Jerry Sandusky’s appeal during a session next month at a high school in Luzerne County.
The hearing is scheduled for 10 a.m. Sept. 17 in the auditorium of Dallas High School, a court spokesman said Thursday. It’s the first of 45 cases being held during the special session in Dallas over two days.
Sandusky’s lawyers have asked for a new trial, arguing they didn’t have enough time to prepare their defense and their disagreement over the trial judge’s allowing hearsay testimony from a janitor about a 2000 shower incident. The defense attorneys also contest the trial judge’s instructions to the jury that allowed them to disregard that it took the victims several years to report their abuse to authorities.
Trial Judge John Cleland rejected their arguments earlier this year, which prompted the appeal to the Superior Court.
Sandusky is almost one year into a 30-year minimum sentence after he was convicted last summer on 45 counts of child abuse. He’s serving his time in solitary confinement in the state prison in Greene County.
Court spokesman Jim Koval said it’s not yet known whether Sandusky will make the 300-mile trip to the hearing.
The judges presiding over the hearing will be Jack Pannella, Sallie Updyke Mundy and William Platt, who is a senior judge.
Sandusky’s appeal is the first of back-to-back high-profile cases for the special session in Luzerne County.
After Sandusky’s hearing is over, the court will hear the appeal of Mike Veon, the former state House Democratic whip who was convicted of misusing state money.
The Superior Court holds sessions outside its hubs of Harrisburg, Philadelphia and Pittsburgh in an effort to make the court more accessible to Pennsylvanians. The court has held sessions on Penn State’s campus, including at the law building in 2011, and is returning to Penn State April 1-2, 2014.
Mike Dawson can be reached at 231-4616. Follow him on Twitter @MikeDawsonCDT.