Court holds 'lottery' for public seating in Sandusky preliminary hearing

Jon Campisi Dec. 7, 2011, 7:30am

Expecting a large turnout given the strong public interest in the case, but working with a venue that’s rather limited in physical size, court officials in central Pennsylvania have decided to hold a “lottery” to award seats to those interested in attending the Jerry Sandusky preliminary hearing.

The Centre County Court of Common Pleas announced Monday that it will open up applications for the seating on Wednesday Dec. 7 starting at noon and close off the application process at noon Thursday Dec. 8.

Sandusky’s preliminary hearing is scheduled for Dec. 13 in Courtroom 1 of the Centre County Courthouse.

Applications for seating will be available at

Sandusky, a former assistant football coach for Pennsylvania State University, stands accused of molesting eight boys in the 1990s and last decade.

He was charged in a 40-count grand jury presentment early last month.

The child sex-abuse scandal rocked the collegiate world and the nation, and led to the firing of the university’s president and its longtime head football coach.

Two other university officials, former business administrator Gary Schultz and athletic director Tim Curley, face perjury and failure to report charges. Those two are also scheduled to appear before a judge this month.

Sandusky has twice publicly denied molesting young boys during interviews with news media. He has, however, admitted to having showered and horsed around with youngsters.

Sandusky met many of his alleged victims at The Second Mile, a Pennsylvania charity the former coach started back in the late 1970s.

He is accused of bringing some of the boys onto Penn State’s campus to carry out the alleged molestations.

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