Some members of the Pennsylvania State University community are optimistic the guilty verdicts in the Jerry Sandusky sex abuse case will be key to helping the them move forward from a scandal that rocked the campus and tainted the university’s image.
A Centre County jury found Sandusky guilty Friday of 45 out of 48 counts related to child sex abuse.
“I was pretty relieved, finally getting justice for what he deserves, I think,” said junior Mallory Pavilonis.
Penn State graduate Nichole Lopes said since news of the scandal broke, friends not affiliated with the university frequently ask about it.
“In my mind it was a horrible train wreck. I know everyone when they found out I was a Penn Stater, they asked about it. So, I’m just happy that they have a verdict out and hopefully we’ll be able to move on,” said Lopes.
Though the trial may be over, there are still several facets of the Sandusky case yet to play out.
-During the trial, two men came forward claiming to be additional victims. One of those men was Matt Sandsuky, Jerry’s adopted son. Attorney General Linda Kelly would only say her office is looking into the allegations but would not comment about the possibility of additional charges against Sandusky.
-Former FBI director Louis Freeh is conducting an internal review at Penn State. His report is expected before students return for the fall semester.
-Penn State is seeking to “privately, expeditiously and fairly address the victims' concerns and compensate them for claims relating to the University.”
-In addition, federal investigators reportedly have sent subpoenas to Penn State officials. Meanwhile, theU.S. Department of Educationis looking into whether the university followed the Clery Act in reporting alleged sex crimes.
-Former administrators Tim Curley and Gary Schultz await trial in Dauphin County, accused of lying to the grand jury investigating the Sandusky case.
Pavilonis said she hoped appropriate changes already have been made at the university, an important step toward helping the community heal the wounds after a devastating scandal.
She said, “Yeah, it hurts now to think people relate all this to Penn State when it’s really just those people who are involved. It’s not Penn State anymore at all.”