The News Courier in Athens, Alabama

Sports

October 7, 2012

Some of Sandusky's jurors hoping for life sentence

(Continued)

"I do still feel good, what we as jurors did," Barnes said. "I didn't go there saying off the bat he's guilty. I needed to listen to every single thing that was said."

Barnes said she has been in touch with a fifth juror and an alternate juror who also plan to attend the sentencing.

High school science teacher Joshua Harper, who has bachelor's and master's degrees from Penn State, said that he takes pride in having served on the jury, and that the guilty verdict was not a close call. He wants Sandusky "put away for the rest of his life, really."

"This is what prisons are for, you know," Harper said. "I mean, I don't think you let a guy loose like that."

He also felt the victim testimony was pivotal.

"It was such a consistent pattern of behavior," Harper said. "It was just so solid. The defense was just so thin. There was no evidence that these kids were lying. Even the minor inconsistencies that the defense tried to bring up — and did bring up — that made it more convincing."

Through a relative, juror Ann T. Van Kuren said she also plans to attend.

Barnes and Harper both said they hoped to learn more about what Penn State officials did or did not do in 1998 and 2001 after getting complaints about Sandusky showering with boys. That was a major theme of the report issued to Penn State this summer by Louis Freeh, the former FBI director, and is likely also to arise during civil litigation by Sandusky's victims against the university.

"We don't know the whole story to this whole thing yet," said Barnes, a Nittany Lions fan who felt so strongly that Joe Paterno's statue should remain in place that she went to the scene outside Beaver Stadium the day it was removed in July, about a month after the verdict. "I just felt like they jumped ship, they didn't do the right thing, that they needed more information. What's going to happen if Curley and Schultz are found not guilty?"

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