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Accusers' attorneys: Penn State failed to protect victims - abc27 WHTM

Accusers' attorneys: Penn State failed to protect victims

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BELLEFONTE, Pa. (WHTM) -

The pictures painted by prosecutors in the Jerry Sandusky child sexual abuse trial have similar themes: young boys, showers, and on many occasions Penn State University.

Sandusky is accused of sexually abusing boys all over the campus and, according to testimony this week, university officials were told it was happening at least three times and failed to act:

- In 1998, the mother of the accuser referred to by prosecutors as Victim 6 called Penn State police to complain about Sandusky showering with her son;

- In 2000, a university janitor told his superiors that he saw Sandusky performing a sex act on a young boy in a football locker room shower; and

- In 2001, then-graduate assistant Mike McQueary made clear to his superiors that he saw something horrible and bad between Sandusky and a boy in a locker room.

There were three strikes, but Sandusky wasn't out at Penn State.

"The Penn State police, the Penn State authorities, everyone from the vice president of the university to the janitor in the shower room cleaning the urinals knew about Mr. Sandusky and they failed to do anything," said Tom Kline, an attorney representing the accuser referred to as Victim 5.

The once-pristine brand has been tarnished. The blue and white will be shelling out lots of green to the victims who testified in Centre County court this week. How much is unknown at his point, but prominent civil attorneys are lined up to make sure Penn State pays up.

"In my opinion, Penn State is an enabler," said Howard Janet, the attorney for the accuser known as Victim 6. "Enablers are responsible along with the perpetrators they enable."

So this trial is not just about one man accused of doing terrible things to young boys. A university stands accused of not doing enough to protect them.

"I believe that not only Penn State, but universities across this country will learn a lesson from this," Kline said. "They will establish policies and it will prove that something good can come out of something bad."

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