Dottie Sandusky, wife of convicted child molester Jerry Sandusky, gave her first interview since her husband’s conviction. In an interview with Matt Lauer on Today, Sandusky not only defended her husband, but attacked his accusers, saying that the motivation behind the charges was not justice, but money.
“I think it was, they were manipulated, and they saw money.Once lawyers came into the case, they said there was money.”
Filmmaker John Ziegler accompanied Sandusky during the interview, which took place in her State College home, the scene of much of the alleged abuse. Ziegler, after an intense two year investigation, now believes that Jerry Sandusky is innocent. When Ziegler began the investigation two years ago, he believed, as most did, that Dottie Sandusky had been manipulated, and was simply one more of her husband’s victims. Ziegler, who has interviewed Jerry Sandusky twice, now firmly backs Dottie Sandusky in her belief:
“I’m certain of one thing above everything else after two years of investigating this case, and that is that Dottie Sandusky is not delusional. She knows the case better than the vast majority of media members, and she is positive that Jerry Sandusky is innocent.”
During the interview, Sandusky gave Matt Lauer a tour of her home, including the basement. It was there that one of the victims claims he was assaulted by Jerry Sandusky and screamed again and again in the hopes that Dottie Sandusky would hear him and intervene. The screams for help were unanswered; leading many to believe that Dottie Sandusky was complicit in her husband’s crimes. Dottie Sandusky has a different explanation; she didn’t hear any screams because there were none to hear. During the tour of the home, Lauer did admit that the house was small.
The conviction of Jerry Sandusky destroyed more than Dottie Sandusky’s home. Matt Sandusky, one of Dottie and Jerry’s six adopted children, told police that he, too, had been sexually abused at the hands of his adopted father. Matt Sandusky explained, in the documentary ‘Happy Valley’, why he stayed in a home where he was abused:
“His name was a golden ticket. It was good to be next to him, to feel powerful, to feel that people envied me instead of looking down on me.”
Sandusky’s conviction on forty-five of the forty-eight charges against him ignited a chain of events that included the firing of legendary Penn State Coach Joe Peterno, Paterno being stripped of all wins and awards earned during his storied career, sanctions against Penn State that caused players to lose scholarships, and indictments of Penn State Officials on charges related to covering up Sandusky’s crimes. If Dottie Sandusky’s faith in her husband is merited, his conviction could be one of the largest miscarriage of justice on record. Only time will tell if Dottie Sandusky is a delusional, manipulated weakling, or a woman with enough courage to fight for the truth.