Sandusky verdict? Our legal analyst says ‘Not guilty’ (Well, not really)

b2f5ffd985ff10022082d6c9c20c6670
Reuters/Pat Little

As the Jerry Sandusky case nears its end, we’ve heard a seemingly interminable procession of accusers and witnesses describe horrific sexual abuse.  The trial of the former Penn State assistant coach for 51 criminal counts involving 10 alleged victims over a 15-year span has turned the once bucolic town of Bellefonte, Pennsylvania, into a media encampment.  
 
But whether it’s the locals, the members of the media stationed on the court lawn, voices on the internet, or the rest of the world, a few common, recurring themes have emerged the last two weeks:
 

  • There’s a mountain of evidence against him; 
  • The testimony is graphic and disturbing; 
  • This is a tragedy for the victims and community.  

 
However, there’s one discussion strangely missing from this particular trial.  This time, no one is asking the question:  What will the verdict be?  Guilty or Not Guilty?  
 
From O.J. Simpson to Casey Anthony, we all asked The Question.  But not this time.  Apparently no one thinks the verdict is even worth debating.  Apparently, the public was convinced last week as they watched a steady stream of accusers (well, blurred-out courtroom sketches of accusers) point their penciled-in fingers at a drawing of the defendant’s head.  There appears to be no national debate here: the guilty verdict is in.    
 
Allow me shake it up a little with my prediction: 
 
Not Guilty.  
 
That’s right. Not guilty.  
 
You see, unlike others, I refuse to get bogged down by distractions like “evidence,” “logic,” or “common sense”.  In fact, my reasons for this prediction have nothing to do with the prosecution’s case at all.  I am proudly ignorant of the facts.  Why so reckless?  I’ll offer an explanation for that too.  But first, my three reasons why I’m predicting Not Guilty in Commonwealth v. Sandusky: 
 
1. The Ultimate Vegas Underdog:  I have not checked the odds, but in gambling parlance, my wager is what most experts call a “long shot,” “the dark horse,” or just plain “sucker bet”.  Still, my odds of a not guilty verdict hover well above the odds of, say, buying a winning lottery ticket.  Judging by the number of folks wasting money on state-sponsored lotto with odds squarely in the kabillion-to-one category, my lousy verdict bet wouldn’t be the worst place to put some money.   

2. America Doesn’t Convict Celebrities: When was the last time we convicted a celebrity?  Whether it’s O.J. Simpson, Robert Blake, John Edwards, or Roger Clemens, in America, the verdict is “Not Guilty by Reason of Fame.”  If Scott Peterson had even been an extra in a B-level zombie flick, he might not be on death row right now.  In America, we have a rich tradition…of letting the rich and famous walk.

3. No One Remembers Incorrect Predictions Anyway:  Thank goodness this is true.  Geraldo Rivera predicted a conviction on Casey Anthony.  So did I.  So did everyone.  We were all wrong.  Fortunately, Americans mercifully have short memory spans when it comes to predictions, promises, and scandal.  With time, all is forgiven and forgotten in the land of the free internet, and the home of the Bravo Channel.  Remember when Kobe Bryant was accused of rape?  Americans forever condemned him…by asking him to represent the United States in the Olympics just a few years later.  When you look at it that way, all I’m doing is making a foolish prediction.  Instead of criticism, I probably deserve an honorary spot on the U.S. Curling Team.    

Ultimately, critics may see my Sandusky prediction as thinly veiled, negative-attention-seeking behavior.  They are probably right.  I’ll just blame it on histrionic personality disorder.  After all, everyone else is doing it.


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

Reddit boosts news capabilities in social media turf…

By Jennifer SabaNEW YORK (Reuters) - Reddit, a website with a retro-'90s look and space-alien mascot that tracks everything from online news to celebrity Q&As,…

Local

New York joins accord to strengthen popular vote…

New York State joined a nationwide effort that would gives the state's 29 electoral votes for president to the candidate who wins the national popular vote.

National

Missouri man charged with sexually torturing five women

A Missouri man has been charged with raping and torturing five women in a St. Louis-area apartment over several years, law enforcement officials said on Tuesday.

Local

Report: NYPD disbands controversial Muslim surveillance program

The New York Times reported on Tuesday that the police unit behind NYPD's Muslim surveillance program was disbanded.

Television

'Orphan Black's' Jordan Gavaris talks Felix's Season 2…

Jordan Gavaris plays heroically helpful foster sibling Felix to main clone Sarah on "Orphan Black." We talked to him about what’s ahead for him in…

Going Out

Accomplice Tour: New York (Spoiler Alert)

When I signed up for the Accomplice show tour, I had no idea what I was in for. But every grimy job comes with a great reward.

Television

TV watch list, Tuesday, April 15: 'New Girl,'…

'New Girl' Nick and Jess are hiding their breakup from the other loft residents. And Winston passes the police academy exam! That guy needed some…

Television

'Orphan Black' is back with 'crazy clone shenanigans'

“Orphan Black” is the little show that could. It had a few things working against it: a sci-fi premise, attracting an audience who had never…

NBA

Nets miss chance to clinch No. 5 seed…

Nets head coach Jason Kidd expressed little concern after a 109-98 loss to the Knicks, but others seemed to disagree.

NFL

Jets confident despite Chris Johnson leaving with no…

Jets fans clamored for a playmaker on offense all offseason. It looked like they were going to land that player on Tuesday when Chris Johnson…

NBA

Knicks, Nets rivalry never materialized despite national attention

When the NBA schedule was released, the league anticipated an intense rivalry between the Nets and Knicks with all four games slated for national TV.

NBA

NBA Power Rankings: Are the Spurs frauds? Could…

NBA Power Rankings: Are the Spurs frauds? Could the Mavericks surprise?

Home

Steal home decorating tips from Nattystyle blogger Natalie…

Despite the towering ceilings and enviable exposed brick, it’s easy to see how Natalie Decleve’s apartment could be considered a challenge. Perched above the streets…

Home

How to plant a garden in the city

Small on space but big on gardening? You can still have that welcoming oasis of fresh air with an urban garden. Peter Smith, owner of…

Style

Personalize your massage at a private practice

CityTouch customizes spa treatments to meet client's needs.

Style

Victoria's Secret Fashion Show moving to England

It will still broadcast on CBS this fall.