“Victim 4” Testifies on Day One [Graphic Language]
Lunch recess concluded, but before the first witness was called, Judge John Cleland had one clarification: from time to time, they would refer to the accusers as “victims,” but that this practice was only convenient short hand. “There are no victims until [the jury] determines that there was a crime,” Cleland said.
The prosecution called their first witness to the stand, known as “Victim 4” in the Grand Jury presentment. Victim 4 met Sandusky through The Second Mile when he was 12 or 13 in 1996 or 1997, according to the presentment. He claims that he was subjected to involuntary deviate sexual intercourse and indecent assault by Sandusky. Most of the alleged abuse occurred on campus, but Victim 4 also traveled with Sandusky to bowl games, according to the presentment. He released a public statement through his lawyer after Sandusky waived his preliminary hearing in December.
Victim 4 first addressed how he came in contact with Sandusky and The Second Mile. He says his guidance counselor recommended him to the program, and soon after entering the program, Sandusky invited him to a family picnic. At one point during the seemingly normal picnic, Victim 4 says Sandusky asked him to go down to the beach. At the beach, Victim 4 alleges that Sandusky was throwing him up in the air, but he was grabbing around the buttocks area instead of a normal grip. During that action, he would allegedly graze Victim 4’s genitals, although he claims it only happened twice.
A week or two later, Victim 4 says Sandusky invited him to play racquetball on Penn State’s campus. After playing racquetball, Victim 4 says Sandusky asked him to shower with him at the Lasch Football Building. Victim 4 says that he had never taken a shower with another person before.
Victim 4 says this pattern continued over the next several weeks — he and Sandusky would play sports on Penn State’s campus and then go back to the Lasch Building to shower together, although no misconduct was mentioned.
But their interactions allegedly became more physical. Victim 4 said that he just called these interactions horsing around, but that quickly led to a soap battle where they would throw soap at each other in the shower.
Victim 4 says that these soap battles were just a game at first, but soon Sandusky started bear hugging him and grabbing him, which made him uncomfortable. At one point, Victim 4 says Sandusky asked to wash his body with the soap.
Victim 4 says that these incidents started getting more physical after a period of about fifteen times, or roughly two months.
Soon, football season started, and Sandusky would invite Victim 4 for the games. Victim 4 says that Sandusky would pick him up from school on Friday, and then he would stay overnight at the Sandusky household, although he alleges no misconduct during those sleepovers initially.
Victim 4 also alleges misconduct when Sandusky would ride with him in a car, and says that often Sandusky would put his hand on his leg. This made Victim 4 very uncomfortable, and when he would attempt to brush Sandusky’s hand away, Sandusky would get upset. Victim 4 says Sandusky would act like he was his girlfriend. Soon, this started happening every time Victim 4 rode in the car with Sandusky, Victim 4 says.
The showering also continued, but it became more explicit. Victim 4 says that Sandusky would force him to touch his penis, and every other part of his body. Sandusky would allegedly maneuver himself so that Victim 4’s penis was in his face. Sometimes, Sandusky would try to discretely put his penis in his mouth, Victim 4 claims.
Victim 4 claims that these shower incidents were never discussed before or after they occurred. Victim 4 says that other than these sexual advances, the rest of their relationship was great. Although he disliked them, Victim 4 says he was hesitant to repel the sexual advances because he didn’t want to give up their relationship. He says that he became part of the football team — like a mascot — and was able to stand on the sidelines during the games.
As time went on, Sandusky’s advances became more aggressive, Victim 4 claims. He says that there were two occasions in the shower when Sandusky tried to slide his finger in his buttocks, and another incident where Sandusky tried to insert his penis while showering. Victim 4 also claims that Sandusky would sometimes ejaculate during these advances.
These incidences are alleged to have occurred in the East Area Locker Room buildings and the Lasch Football Building. Victim 4 says that he took about 40 showers with Sandusky. Victim 4 also says that he was taking a shower in Sandusky’s hotel room at the 1999 Alamo Bowl, when Sandusky entered and asked him to perform oral sex on him.
Victim 4 says he didn’t want to tell Sandusky to stop because he enjoyed their friendship, aside from the abuse. He says that he didn’t have a father, or a role model, and that he didn’t want to lose that relationship. Victim 4 also says that kids would make fun of him at school because he was so close to Sandusky — some classmates even claiming that they were having sex with each other — but Victim 4 would have to brush off the criticisms as jealousy.
At some point as he got older, Victim 4 says he began to repel away from Sandusky. He said that he would come home from school, run inside his house, and see Sandusky outside. He says he would then hide in the closet and hoped he wasn’t found. Sandusky would allegedly call Victim 4’s house repeatedly, and write him creepy love letters.
One such letter was displayed on a projector where Sandusky admits to making mistakes in their relationship. Pictures of Sandusky and Victim 4 together, along with other Penn State football players, were also shown on the screen. The questioning was then cut short due to technical difficulties, and a short 20 minute recess was ordered.
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About the Author
James Franklin is here to stay.
ESPN’s Adam Rittenberg reported that Rahne is “in the mix” for the head coaching job at Old Dominion, which was left vacant by Bobby Wilder’s resignation on December 2.
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