GRANTS PASS, Ore. – At Jerry Sandusky’s sentencing on Tuesday, a Pennsylvania judge handed the former Penn State assistant football coach a prison term that will likely have him spending the rest of his life behind bars.
The sentence of no less than 30 and no more than 60 years in prison, comes after Sandusky’s conviction on 45 counts of child sex abuse last June. One local prosecutor says Sandusky’s sentencing was just. The judge could have sentenced Jerry Sandusky to 400 hundred years or more in prison for his crimes, but said that didn’t make sense for a man his age.
NewsWatch12 spoke with Deputy District Attorney Ryan Mulkins, who specializes in child sex abuse cases in Josephine County. He said he’s not clear on why the judge may have sentenced Sandusky to these terms, but believes most likely the minimum time Sandusky ends up serving will be like a life sentence. Under Pennsylvania law, Sandusky cannot be released on parole before the 30 years minimum sentence is up. Sandusky is 68 years-old and by the time he finishes the minimum, he’ll be 98-years-old.
“I think the judge likely thought, ‘Look, I’ll give this guy 30 to 60 years. That’s a life sentence.’ That’s not good enough to the victims. They very likely would have liked to have seen the max sentence just because they would have felt that they needed some sort of retribution or that was justice for them,” Mulkins said.
Sandusky’s attorneys have also announced they plan to appeal his conviction, saying if they had enough time to prepare, then Sandusky could have been acquitted. Though Mulkins said a trial judge would have made sure evidence or other factors were ready before the trial started. Sandusky’s attorneys have ten days to file an appeal.