Jerry Sandusky demonstrated "the full spectrum of predatory pedophile behavior" with his alleged victims, preying on vulnerable children from fatherless homes, lead state prosecutor Joseph McGettigan said during closing arguments this afternoon.
McGettigan said Sandusky cultivated children and progressed from light touching to severe sexual abuse. He said the former Penn State football coach stalked some and wrote letters to others.
Sandusky "took pieces of their souls, ravaging them in the process", McGettigan said.
"Give him the justice he deserves," McGettigan said, standing directly behind Sandusky in his last remarks. "Find him guilty of everything."
McGettigan, who spoke for just more than an hour -- often softly -- also attacked the defense team over its suggestion of an anti-Sandusky conspiracy. He said the defense's conspiracy theories contradict themselves and follow a pattern that McGettigan anticipated when the trial began.
At that point, even before testimony started, McGettigan told jurors, he predicted the defense would "call everyone a liar" and "allege a conspiracy."
"This case is about him and what he did to them," McGettigan said of Sandusky and his alleged victims. "It's not about conspiracies. It's not about time-travel conspiracies."
He said a defense-promoted conspiracy would have to stretch back at least 14 years. And "it involves (fellow prosecutor Frank) Finna and myself."
"If you conclude there was a conspiracy, well, bring in handcuffs for me," McGettigan said. He told jurors they have heard from "real people, people who have taken oaths" and tried to do the right thing.
Element by element, McGettigan focused on points of contention in the Sandusky trial. He defended witness Mike McQueary, asking the jury to consider "the sheer shock he must have experienced" upon seeing an alleged shower incident between Sandusky and a boy who appeared to be about 10-or-11-years old in 2001.
McGettigan also asked jurors to have sympathy and compassion for alleged victims who took the stand. They knew they would be called liars and face "big questions by big people," the prosecutor said.
"They tried to tell you something that they (had) tried to bury, that they had, in fact, buried," McGettigan went on.About an hour into his closing remarks, he addressed the testimony of Sandusky's wife, Dottie Sandusky, who took the stand Tuesday. McGettigan asked jurors to consider how she responded when asked why so many people would lie about her husband.
"Do you remember her answer?" McGettigan said.
It was, he said, "I don't know."
Jurors heard the defense team's closing arguments earlier Thursday. Deliberations are scheduled to begin this afternoon.
Defense attorneys in the Jerry Sandusky child sex abuse trial spent more than an hour delivering closing arguments to the jury this morning, pleading with the seven women and five men to find the retired football coach not guilty.
"It doesn't make sense. It just doesn't' make sense," Attorney Joseph Amendola said again and again, working through the 48 charges against Sandusky, 68.
"Last year Mr. Sandusky's world came to an end, his wife's world came to an end, his children's world came to an end. Everything they ever believed in or fought for came to an end."
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