Jerry Sandusky’s victims will receive $59 million from Penn State University. The deal includes 26 men who claim they were sexually abused by the former assistant football coach. A majority of the men were underage when the abuse occurred.
The deal concluded nearly a year’s worth of negotiations between the university and the victims’ attorneys. The university reports that 23 victims signed the agreements, and the other three have committed to signing.
As reported by ABC News, six victims’ claims remain unresolved. Officials said a few may result in settlement, but the others were determined to be unfounded.
Jerry Sandusky’s career with Penn State University began in 1969, when he was hired as a defensive line coach. In addition to his work with the university, he founded an organization called The Second Mile in 1977.
The organization was created to provide assistance to young boys who were troubled or at-risk. The Second Mile program eventually expanded to offer assistance to all at-risk children and their parents.
Sandusky’s career and non-profit organization were successful throughout the 1990s. As reported by Huffington Post, Penn State received the first report of impropriety in 1998.
A mother contacted the university to report that Sandusky showered with her 11-year-old son. The coach eventually admitted to showering with several young boys. While he admitted it was inappropriate, he said he did not harm the children. He agreed to stay away from the 11-year-old and refrain from taking showers with boys.
Jerry Sandusky retired from Penn state in 1999, but maintained his emeritus status. In the next eight years, at least two more incidents were reported to Penn State University. Despite numerous accusations, he maintained his access to the university’s recreational facilities and showers until 2002.
After receiving several disturbing reports, the Pennsylvania attorney general opened an investigation into Sandusky’s interactions with children. In 2011 the former assistant coach was arrested on 40 counts of criminal misconduct.
Coach Joe Paterno, athletic director Tim Curley, President for Finance and Business Gary Schultz, and university President Graham Spanier, were all terminated for failing to respond to the complaints about the former coach.
Jerry Sandusky was found guilty of 45 counts of crimes against children and young teens. He was sentenced to a minimum of 30 years in prison. With the announcement of the conviction, Penn State committed to compensating the victims.
[Image via Wikimedia]