Sandusky defense says accusers were coached and motivated by money

    Jerry Sandusky’s defense team is trying to paint investigators as coaching the former Penn State defensive coordinator’s accusers to admit abuse.  His lawyers also claim the alleged victims have something more to gain than just a clear conscience.

    Two Pennsylvania state troopers, one now retired, have testified that in the course of their work on the investigation into Sandusky, they did not try to coax allegations of abuse out of accusers by sharing specific details of other allegations.

    But, the defense played a tape of an interview in court Tuesday where an alleged victim’s attorney asked a trooper if they could tell his client that other people had admitted to being forced to have intercourse with Sandusky. The same tape contained a conversation in which one trooper told an alleged victim he had spoken to about nine other accusers.

    In cross-examination, the prosecution called such a move a perfectly normal interviewing technique.

    Upon further questioning, the defense tried to catch the two troopers in a lie about whether they had discussed their testimony while waiting outside the courtroom. The troopers said they had not, while the retired law enforcement agent said they had.

    Throughout the trial, defense attorneys have suggested Sandusky’s alleged victims will be able to file civil lawsuits and shoot for a big payout if Sandusky is found guilty.

    To that end, the defense has called the attorney of alleged Victim Four as a witness.

    Attorney Ben Andreozzi wouldn’t go into the details of his written agreement with his client, citing attorney-client privilege.

    “We’ve never had discussions about who you could sue,” said Andreozzi.

    When asked point-blank by the defense lawyer if a guilty verdict could have a positive impact on his or his client, Andreozzi admitted, “It could have impact.”

    In most of the morning testimony, witnesses talked about Sandusky’s character.

    One witness, a 25-year-old woman who says she met the former Penn State assistant coach through the charity The Second Mile, says she grew up with alleged Victim Four.

    “He was a dishonest person,” she said, adding that Victim Four was known for embellishing stories.

    The defense is continuing to call a stream of character witnesses, including neighbors and several adults who also say they first met Sandusky when they were children enrolled in programs with The Second Mile.  Of the four former Second Mile kids called to testify for the defense, three were women

    Want a digest of WHYY’s programs, events & stories? Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

    It will take 126,000 members this year for great news and programs to thrive. Help us get to 100% of the goal.