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Sandusky gets least 30 years, denies wrongdoing

  • Former Penn State University assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky is driven from the Centre County Courthouse after being sentenced in Bellefonte, Pa., Tuesday, Oct. 9, 2012. Sandusky was sentenced to at least 30 years in prison, effectively a life sentence, in the child sexual abuse scandal that brought shame to Penn State and led to coach Joe Paterno's downfall. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

BELLEFONTE, Pa. — In what sounded at times like a locker room pep talk, Jerry Sandusky rambled in his red prison suit about being the underdog in the fourth quarter, about forgiveness, about dogs and about the movie "Seabiscuit."

With his accusers seated behind him in the courtroom, he denied committing "disgusting acts" against children and instead painted himself as the victim.

And then, after he had said his piece, a judge sentenced him to 30 to 60 years in prison Tuesday, all but ensuring the 68-year-old Sandusky will spend the rest of his life behind bars for the child sexual abuse scandal that brought disgrace to Penn State and triggered the downfall of his former boss, football coach Joe Paterno.

He leaves behind a trail of human and legal wreckage that could take years for the university to clear away.

"The tragedy of this crime is that it's a story of betrayal. The most obvious aspect is your betrayal of 10 children," Judge John Cleland said after a hearing in which three of the men Sandusky was convicted of molesting as boys confronted him face to face and told of the lasting pain he had inflicted.


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