Jerry Sandusky said in interview excerpts broadcast Monday that a key witness against him misinterpreted him showering with a young boy in Penn State football team facilities more than a decade ago.
Sandusky told documentary filmmaker John Ziegler, in recordings played on NBC's "Today" show, that he does not understand how Mike McQueary concluded "that sex was going on" when he witnessed Sandusky showering with a boy in 2001.
"That would have been the last thing I would have thought about," Sandusky said during what Ziegler described as 3 1/2 hours of interviews. "I would have thought maybe fooling around or something like that."
From FRAMING PATERNO.com
Jerry Zeigler writes:
"Earlier this month I interviewed Jerry Sandusky on three separate occasions for a total of over three and a half hours. The interview is not only Sandusky’s first face-to-face interview of its kind since his arrest; it is also the first of any sort since his conviction. It is also, for many reasons (some of which are not likely immediately obvious), likely the last interview of this type that Sandusky will ever do. This morning I am releasing a very small portion of this interview via audio clips which will be aired first on NBC’s Today Show and, exclusively, shortly thereafter on this website. The full interview (both audio and transcript) will be released at a later date.
The primary purpose of this interview was not to attempt to exonerate Jerry Sandusky of the horrible crimes for which he was convicted in a trial where he didn’t even take the stand in his own defense. That was neither my goal nor really even an interest of mine and I made that point very clear to everyone in Sandusky’s camp who was in the loop on deciding to approve this interview.
My principal objective was to gather new information about this story as it related to the alleged culpability of Joe Paterno and Penn State in these crimes. To that end, most (though hardly all) of my questions were intended to focus on that aspect of this story and to attempt to fill in the many blanks which have created difficulty for anyone to fully understand what really happened here. He is obviously the central figure in this story and it is impossible to put all the pieces of the puzzle together without a full record of his account.
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McQueary, a graduate assistant in 2001, testified at trial that he heard "skin-on-skin smacking sound" and had no doubt he was witnessing anal sex.
Then an assistant coach, McQuery was often a guest of the Buffalo-area Penn State Alumni club, and has family ties to the area. His grandfather lived in South Buffalo
In a transcript posted online, Ziegler said he asked Sandusky whether McQueary was wrong when he said they made eye contact during that incident.
"I don't know that he's lying," Sandusky replied. "I think that he would be uncertain about it and he may have said that I thought that I saw him. But he wouldn't have known that. How could he have known that?"
McQueary's father, John McQueary, declined comment, and there was no answer at McQueary's lawyer's office early Monday.
Mike McQueary has filed a defamation and whistleblower lawsuit against Penn State over how he was treated after Sandusky's arrest.
The boy, identified as Victim 2 in court records, was not a witness at trial. A team of civil lawyers has said they are representing Victim 2 and posted online audio recordings of voicemails purportedly from Sandusky and left for the boy.
Sandusky also told Ziegler he was not sure whether head coach Joe Paterno, who was fired after Sandusky's November 2011 arrest, would have let him keep coaching if he suspected Sandusky was a pedophile. Sandusky was investigated by university police for a separate shower incident in 1998, but remained one of Paterno's top assistants through 1999.
"If he absolutely thought I was, I'd say no," Sandusky said. "If he had a suspicion, I don't know the answer to that."
When Ziegler asked Sandusky whether he would admit touching some of the boys inappropriately, Sandusky responded that he didn't do it, according to the transcript posted on www.framingpaterno.com .
"Yeah, I hugged them," Sandusky said, according to Ziegler. "Maybe I tested boundaries. Maybe I shouldn't have showered with them. Yeah, I tickled them. I looked at them as being probably younger than even some of them were. But I didn't do any of these horrible acts and abuse these young people. I didn't violate them. I didn't harm them."
Ziegler, who is working on a defense of Paterno, said the interviews were conducted during three sessions, and told the AP on Monday that additional excerpts will be posted online over the coming days. He also has exchanged correspondence with Sandusky that he does not intend to release.
Wick Sollers, a Paterno family lawyer, said in a statement released Sunday that Sandusky had an opportunity to testify at trial but "chose not to do so."
Penn State issued a statement that said Sandusky's latest remarks "continue to open wounds for his victims, and the victims of child sexual abuse everywhere."
Sandusky, 69, is serving a 30- to 60-year prison sentence after being convicted last year of 45 counts of child sexual abuse. He maintains his innocence and is pursuing appeals.