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News Link • Sexuality: Sex and the Law

Days of pain for accusers in Penn State sex abuse trial

• By Ian Simpson and Matt Morgan

But no matter their demeanors, each of the eight young men summoned to the witness stand in a Pennsylvania courthouse this week revealed a similar narrative of sexual abuse as young boys. And one man stood at the center of each account: former Penn State assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky.

  Over four days of graphic and often wrenching testimony, a consistent pattern emerged: The burly, outgoing coach would put his hand on a knee in a car. That progressed to more intrusive touching, tickling and hugging. In some cases, the pattern ended with forced oral and anal sex. 

For years, shame kept them from talking about it. Fear also had a role.

  "He was an important guy, he was a football coach. Who would believe kids?" said the last accuser to take the stand, identified in a grand jury report as Victim 9. 

Hanging his head, the 18-year-old man said Sandusky had anally raped him and forced him to perform oral sex.

  Before his arrest in November, Sandusky was a respected former assistant coach with the vaunted Pennsylvania State University football program and the founder of Second Mile, a charity for at-risk youth. 

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