BELLEFONTE - An 18-year-old man who only days ago graduated from Mifflin County High School was asked Thursday to look around the large Centre County courtroom hosting Jerry Sandusky's child sex abuse trial in Bellefonte, and point to the man who he said had sexually abused him during his childhood.
He seemed flustered at the instruction posed by Senior Deputy Attorney General Joseph McGettigan.
"I don't want to look at him," the man known as Victim 9 said.
AP photo/Centre Daily Times, Nabil K. Mark
Jerry Sandusky, left, leaves the Centre County Courthouse and walks toward his attorney Joe Amendola's car Thursday, in Bellefonte. The prosecution's case in Sandusky's sex abuse trial neared its conclusion on Thursday after just four days of testimony, with three more accusers taking the witness stand, including a young man who said the former Penn State assistant football coach raped him as a teen guest in Sandusky's home.
The Sentinel typically does not report the identities of people who claim to be the victim of a sexually-related crime.
At further urging by the veteran prosecutor, the man half-glanced to his left and aimed his finger at the man he called "Jerry," a retired Penn State assistant football coach, who this week has been on trial, charged with 52 counts of child sexual abuse against 10 boys.
Victim 9 testified for an hour about Sandusky, 68, engaging in oral and anal sex with him multiple times between 2004-08, when he was 12-to-16 years old. He said the abuse occurred in Sandusky's College Township home.
While there was no surprise who he was talking about in his testimony, Victim 9's hesitation to look at Sandusky illustrated the struggle he had as he was slowly drawn through his story by McGettigan.
He was among the youngest of the victims to testify this week and despite the repeated abuse, he said he never told anybody, not even his mother, what Sandusky was doing to him.
"How are you supposed to tell your mom about something like that?" he asked rhetorically in response to a question of why he didn't confide in her.
Victim 9 said he first met Sandusky, when he was swimming, participating in The Second Mile program, the charity Sandusky founded in 1977 to aid at-risk children.
The teen said Sandusky was at the pool playing with the kids, and he asked him, who then was 5 feet tall and weighed 67 pounds, if he wanted to do things with him.
It seemed like a good idea, Victim 9 said, noting Sandusky was a "well-known guy," and that he "seemed nice."
He said he began visiting Sandusky's home and at first "It was nice."
They played games, went out to eat and Sandusky gave him gifts, like sneakers, Victim 9 testified.
He said he began to spend weekends at the Sandusky home and the former coach began to come into a basement bedroom where he slept. Sandusky would rub him, crack his back and kiss him, he testified.
He said he told him to stop but Sandusky wouldn't. The abuse increased with inappropriate touching.
Sandusky "got real aggressive," he said, explaining that he was forced into doing things he didn't like.
Ultimately, the boy said he decided he would suffer in silence, reasoning there was nothing he could do to stop what was happening.
"I just went with it. There was no fighting it. He was a big guy, way bigger than me," he said.
Victim 9 testified that sometimes he would scream and tell Sandusky to get off him but he said, "No one can hear you down there (in the basement bedroom.)"
"He told me he loved me. He wanted to do the best for me. He meant no harm to me. ... It's creepy," he said.
One weekend, the boy said he'd had enough and used his cellphone to call his mother to come and get him.
She did, and he said he never again spent a night in the Sandusky home.
He said he still didn't tell his mother, who continued to encourage him to go with Sandusky on weekends. But it became known through the news media that Sandusky was under investigation, and one morning, he said his mother told him to get up early because the police were coming to talk to him.
He said he never wanted to talk to the police because nobody believes the kids and that Sandusky was a well-known coach.
In the end, though, he said he told McGettigan everything.
"You're the first person I told anything to," he stated to McGettigan.
"Did you want to come here today?' McGettigan asked.
"No," Victim 9 replied.
Victim 9 was the last witness to be presented by the prosecution, and Sandusky and his attorneys, Joe Amendola and Karl Rominger, are expected to begin the defense on Monday morning. The trial takes the day off today.
McGettigan had not formally rested the prosecution's case, leaving open the possibility of additional evidence Monday, but Senior Judge John Cleland indicated that the prosecution had completed its case.
The 18-year-old man was one of three alleged victims who testified Thursday.
The others included Victim 6, who is about to graduate from a Bible college, and Victim 3, an Iraq war veteran now serving in the Army Reserve.
Victim 6 allegedly went through much the same abuse as most of the other victims who testified. Sandusky met him at a Second Mile picnic in 1998, he said.
He said he remembered going with Sandusky to a work out at Penn State's Holuba Hall, the football team's indoor practice facility. As a Penn State football fan, he said he was excited about going with Sandusky.
Victim 6 said it didn't take long before the excursion became "uncomfortable."
He said Sandusky was showing him wrestling holds, such as how to pin someone. He said that Sandusky then had him who, at the time was 11, go into the showers with him. Sandusky tickled him, gave him a bear hug and put soap on his back and his hair, he testified. Sandusky then lifted the boy into the shower head to wash off the soap, Victim 6 testified.
"That's the last thing I remember of being in the shower," he said, stating everything then turned "black."
Victim 6 said when he went home that day, he told his mother his hair was wet because he had taken a shower with Sandusky. He said his mother called Penn State University police.
After an investigation, Detective Ronald Schreffler, who also testified Thursday, said he felt the investigation into Sandusky should continue.
Then-Centre County District Attorney Ray Gricar opted not to file charges, a point emphasized by Amendola.
As a boy, Victim 6 said he didn't feel Sandusky did anything wrong, but now, as a 25-year-old man looking back on the incident, he said he feels what Sandusky did to him was "inappropriate."
"I feel violated. I've been through a lot, an emotional roller coaster since then," he said.
To this day, he said he still can't remember what occurred in the Holuba Hall shower that night.
A war veteran, Victim 3, also 25 years old, said he never knew his father and explained that he put up with Sandusky's advances in the downstairs bedroom: the blowing on his stomach, the rubbing and kissing and the molestation in the showers.
He said it was because Sandusky treated him "nice" and "he made me feel like I was part of something, a family."
"I loved him. Jerry told me I was like extended family, unconditionally loved," he said.
Yet he said when he was placed in a foster home, he never again heard from Sandusky.
McGettigan asked him how he presently feels about Sandusky.
"I'm mad. I'm enraged. I'm hurt - to just forget about me like I was nothing when I got sent away," Victim 3 said.
In reviewing the prosecution's case, attorney Tom Kline of Philadelphia, who is representing Victim 5 in a civil lawsuit, said he felt McGettigan has presented a good case against Sandusky, and he described the final witness, Victim 9, as having presented powerful testimony.
The attorney for Victim 6, Andrew Shubin of State College, summed up the prosecution case.
"Jerry betrayed each and every one of these boys," he said. "It was colossal betrayal."
Kline and Shubin spoke Thursday outside the Centre County Courthouse during breaks in the testimony.