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Published: Wednesday, 10/10/2012

Criminal act

Right to the end, Jerry Sandusky abused his victims.

The former assistant football coach at Pennsylvania State University was sentenced Tuesday to a prison term of 30 to 60 years for his conviction on 45 counts of child sexual abuse. Before his sentencing, he made a recorded statement.

In it, he maligned one of his victims as a “veteran accuser” who “always sought attention.” He suggested the other nine victims were motivated by quests for attention, money, and “prestige.” He blamed “the media, investigators, the system, Penn State psychologists [and] civil attorneys” — but not himself.

It was more of the self-aggrandizement that characterized Sandusky's defense, but it had no impact on his sentence. The presiding judge told the 68-year-old Sandusky that the sentence “has the unmistakable effect of saying you will spend the rest of your life in prison.”

That justice was tempered by the fact that Sandusky denied his victims even the satisfaction of hearing him take responsibility for assaulting and forever damaging them — young men who relied on him when they were troubled.

Sandusky should have had the decency to apologize for violating their trust and their bodies, but there was nothing decent about his case from the beginning.

At least his victims and the public know he will never harm another child, or enjoy another day of freedom.

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