It took less than two days to narrow down a pool of more than 200 people to the 16 responsible for hearing out arguments in the upcoming Jerry Sandusky trial, as three final jurors and four alternates were selected Wednesday at the Centre County Courthouse in Bellefonte.
Cleland told the jurors that the trial will begin Monday and should last about three weeks, wrapping up by the last day of June. Sandusky is charged with 52 counts of child sex abuse, which prosecutors say involved boys he met through his charity, The Second Mile.
All of those chosen Wednesday have ties to Penn State in varying roles, ranging from alumni to employees to a former professor. More information about the nine jurors selected Tuesday can be found here.
The first juror selected Wednesday, and the 10th total, is in her 50s and works as an administrative assistant in the engineering department at Penn State.
The 11th juror is in her 30s and works as a dance instructor with the university’s continuing education program, and her husband is also employed by the unversity. Sandusky's attorney, Joe Amendola, asked this juror if she could be impartial in the case because she has a young son, but the woman said that her concern for her child’s safety would not interfere with her impartiality. With her son, she said, there are “a lot of sides to a story.”
This woman also said she knows Kelly Hastings, the superintendent of the Keystone Central School District and recently subpoenaed by Sandusky’s defense team to provide the court with any school documents relating to the person referred to as “Victim 1.” The court recently required the school district to provide Sandusky’s defense team with any records of behavioral health, psychiatric treatment, opinions and diagnoses as well as any investigative reports regarding a harassment complaint made by the person referred to as “Victim 1.”
A professor at Penn State for more than 20 years, in her 50s or 60s, was the 12th juror selected. She said she knew former Penn State President Graham Spanier and current Penn State President Rodney Erickson, who previously served as executive vice president and provost, but only on a professional basis through a university committee.
The first alternate juror is a 2007 Penn State graduate in her 30s, while the second alternate is a middle-aged married woman who does not have children and said she doesn’t pay much attention to the media.
The third alternate — a Penn State alumnus in his late 50s to early 60s who said he is a big Penn State Football fan — smiled at Sandusky as he walked into the courtroom. His wife is the director if the Upward Bound program at Penn State, which helps get financially disadvantaged children into college. During a recess, Sandusky indicated that he wanted this man on the jury.
The final alternate juror has no connection to Penn State and returned to Centre County recently, now in her 60s, after leaving at age 19. She said she only gets one newspaper, adding, “I only believe about half of what I read in that one.”
Earlier, Amendola asked again for a continuance in the trial — questioning whether the gag order in the case was violated when Ben Andreozzi, the attorney representing the person referred to as “Victim 4” in court documents. Andreozzi told a news outlet about prosecutors’ plans to present “love letters” he said Sandusky sent to his client. Cleland denied the request, saying that he gave jurors strict instructions to avoid news reports.