(STATE COLLEGE, Pa.) — The Pennsylvania Supreme Court on Monday denied a defense motion to delay the trial of former Penn State football coach Jerry Sandusky, who is accused of molesting 10 boys over a 15-year-period.
That means jury selection in the case will get underway Tuesday, with the trial scheduled to begin on June 11.
In asking for a delay, lead defense attorney Joe Amendola unsuccessfully argued that two potential defense witnesses and two experts are unavailable for the trial date, while an investigator is having surgery.
Sandusky has maintained his innocence since being arrested last November in a scandal that cast dark aspersions on the Penn State athletic program and cost legendary head coach Joe Paterno his job. Paterno, 85, died of lung cancer last January.
In other developments Monday, the identities of eight alleged victims of child abuse will be made public during the trial, Judge John Cleland ruled.
Four of the alleged victims had petitioned to keep their identities anonymous by allowing them to use pseudonyms. All of the victims have been previously denoted only by a number, such as “Victim 1” and “Victim 2,” during the investigation and pre-trial hearings.
However, when the actual trial begins next week, the court will not take any official action to protect their identities as the alleged victims testify against Sandusky, 68, who is charged with 52 counts of child molestation.
“While I will make every effort to be sensitive to the nature of the alleged victims’ testimony, once the trial begins the veil must be lifted,” Cleland wrote in an order released on Monday.
The victims are expected to testify about the incidents in which Sandusky allegedly molested them, including on Penn State’s campus, in the football locker room showers, in the campus hotel Toftrees, in Arizona at the 1998 Outback Bowl Game, and in Texas’ 1999 Alamo Bowl game.
If the four victims choose not to testify in light of Cleland’s ruling, the prosecution will be left with four other victims as well as witnesses to prove the charges of molestation and child rape against Sandusky.
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