Lawyer: Sandusky 'shower' quote out of context

Jerry Sandusky, left, the former Penn State assistant football coach charged with sexually abusing boys, arrives with his wife, Dottie Sandusky, for a preliminary hearing at the Centre County Courthouse in Bellefonte, Pa., where he will face his accusers Tuesday, Dec. 13, 2011. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)
December 15, 2011 12:46:08 PM PST
An attorney on the defense team of former Penn State assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky says his recent comments on the case have been taken out of context.

Sandusky is facing numerous charges of child sex assault.

In an interview with ABC station WHTM-TV in Harrisburg, attorney Karl Rominger said Sandusky may have simply been teaching kids how to shower.

Sandusky founded the Second Mile charity organization, which helped disadvantaged youth.

"People who work with troubled youth will tell you that there are a lot of juvenile delinquents or people who are dependent who have to be taught basic life skills like how to put soap on their body," Rominger said.

Rominger, who spoke with abc27 News on Tuesday, added that his college cross country coach often showered with the team.

Then, in a statement issued Thursday, Rominger said the media accounts of his answer have become "somewhat exaggerated."

"When answering why a person might be in a shower with a youth, I proposed one hypothetical, such as an adult leading by example and encouraging a youth with bad or poor hygiene to shower regularly," he said in the statement.

"Therefore, I would like to clarify that I am not suggesting that this is what happened in this case, but was answering questions about possible motivations an individual might have for an adult to shower with a juvenile," he said.

RELATED: More from abc27.com

Sandusky was first charged Nov. 5. He has pleaded not guilty to the sex abuse accusations, acknowledging he showered with boys but saying he didn't molest them.

Sandusky waived his preliminary hearing earlier this week.

On Friday, two Penn State administrators accused of failing to properly report suspected abuse and lying to the grand jury investigating Sandusky will be in court.

Tim Curley and Gary Schultz face their own pretrial hearing on Friday in Harrisburg, and although the charges are much different, with far less severe potential penalties, their cases could hinge on a man also expected to be a prime witness against Sandusky: assistant football coach Mike McQueary.

McQueary testified that he happened upon "rhythmic, slapping sounds" in the football team locker room showers in March 2002, and looked in to see a naked boy being sodomized by the former defensive coordinator, according to a grand jury presentment.

McQueary, then a 28-year-old graduate assistant, reported what he saw to then-football coach Joe Paterno, the grand jury said. Paterno called Curley, the university's athletic director, the next day, and a week and a half later McQueary met with Curley and Schultz - who oversaw university police in his position as a vice president.

What precisely was said at those meetings, and what Curley and Schultz did or didn't do afterward is at the heart of the government's case against them.


Load Comments