Crime

Jeffrey Sandusky sentenced to state prison in sex abuse case

Jeffrey Sandusky leaves the Centre County Courthouse after his sentencing on Friday in Bellefonte. Sandusky was sentenced to 3 1/2 to 7 years in state prison after pleading guilty to underage sex crimes in September.
Jeffrey Sandusky leaves the Centre County Courthouse after his sentencing on Friday in Bellefonte. Sandusky was sentenced to 3 1/2 to 7 years in state prison after pleading guilty to underage sex crimes in September. adrey@centredaily.com

Jerry Sandusky’s son was sentenced to 3  1/2 to 7 years of state prison time after pleading guilty to underage sex abuse charges.

Jeffrey S. Sandusky, 42, was arrested in February amid allegations that he requested nude photos from two underage females in March 2013. Police were notified of the accusations in November 2016.

Sandusky was slated to go to trial for the charges in September, but pleaded guilty to 14 counts, including charges of criminal solicitation — statutory sexual assault 11 years or older, criminal solicitation — involuntary deviate sexual intercourse of a person younger than 16 years old, criminal solicitation — photograph of a sex act involving a child, unlawful contact with minors, sexual communication with minors and criminal solicitation of child pornography. Twelve of the 14 counts are considered felony offenses.

Sandusky’s attorney, Lance Marshall, argued for a mitigated sentence of three to six years, saying that throughout the case, the prosecution focused its attention on “victim one,” though the allegations by that victim were the less serious of the criminal acts. Marshall claimed at no time was there any physical contact between Sandusky and the victims, and they continued to live together for more than three years after the incident.

At no time did the victim ever report the incident to police either, he said. Marshall also noted that no text messages were recovered from “victim two.”

Assistant District Attorney Crystal Hundt countered the arguments by pointing out that Sandusky had been in a position of trust for both the victims and used that position to solicit nude photos from them. While he was not considered by the Pennsylvania Sexual Offenders Assessment Board to be a sexually violent predator, she said, his actions did show a pattern of predatory behavior in his repeated insistence that “victim one” send him photos.

Because it was an isolated incident, Hundt said, did not mitigate the fact that a crime was committed. She also noted that underage incidents often go unreported by minors for many personal reasons.

Centre County President Judge Pamela Ruest sentenced Sandusky to a combined state sentence of 3  1/2 to 7 years followed by a combined sentence of one year of probation. He must also pay the costs of prosecution and a $50 fine.

He was credited with 299 days already served.

He is barred from having any contact with the victims in the case, Ruest ruled, and is forbidden from being in lone contact or a supervisory position of anyone younger than 18. He must also register as a tier three sex offender, which requires a lifetime registration.

Jeffrey Sandusky is one of Jerry Sandusky’s six adopted children. Jerry Sandusky is the retired Penn State defensive coordinator whose 2011 arrest and 2012 conviction on 45 of 48 counts of child sex abuse crimes rocked the university. Jeffrey Sandusky’s adopted brother, Matthew Sandusky, claimed to have been sexually abused by their father, but was not one of the 10 victims in the criminal case.

Jerry Sandusky is serving 30 to 60 years in prison and is incarcerated at Somerset state prison. He maintains his innocence and is presently appealing his Post-conviction Collateral Relief Act petition.

A previous version of this story incorrectly listed Jeffrey Sandusky’s sentence. The above story reflects the correct information.

Jeremy Hartley: 814-231-4616, @JJHartleyNews

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