Sandusky trial prosecutors decline defense's request for evidence

State College - Centre Daily TimesMarch 6, 2012 

BELLEFONTE — Prosecutors are holding their ground and refusing to turn over evidence that Jerry Sandusky's defense attorney wants to see before heading to trial.

Senior Deputy Attorney General Jonelle Eshbach wrote in a document filed Monday that the information — pages of police and investigative reports, grand jury subpoenas, private personal information, juvenile arrest records and psychological evaluations of the accusers — is secret.

The response follows defense attorney Joe Amendola’s request to have the prosecution provide full, unedited copies of those reports and other evidence because the prosecution previously provided redacted versions that had lines or even full pages blacked out.

Eshbach wrote that prosecutors only have to turn over evidence that would lead to an unfair trial if it were suppressed. She also asked Senior Judge John Cleland to let both sides iron out their differences on the matter without his intervention.

Amendola said Monday he was reviewing the prosecution’s answer and expects to raise additional issues that would be heard before Cleland next week.

“We’ll also respond to the commonwealth’s answer to our discovery requests in due course and ask the court to rule on our discovery issues which haven’t been resolved,” he said.

Eshbach wrote in the response that the redacted passages were of accusers’ addresses or phone numbers, references to

grand jury matters or part of her office’s continuing investigation.

The prosecution will turn over a few items:

•Sandusky’s employment records from Penn State. Eshbach wrote that the defense can get those on its own, but prosecutors will provide them.

•A document that references investigators obtaining 52,220 emails.

•A state police report that references “linking alleged behavior.”

Amendola had asked to see photos obtained from The Second Mile, and prosecutors said the defense can go through state police to view them. The defense was also told to make an appointment with state police to review the items taken from Sandusky’s house in June.

In addition, prosecutors said they don’t have any documents from then-District Attorney Ray Gricar about the 1998 investigation into Sandusky showering with a young boy.

Furthermore, prosecutors said they won’t provide the defense with their list of witnesses and said anyone whose name appears in the discovery material could be called as a witness at trial. They also said there were no polygraphs used.

Another pretrial matter that’s unresolved is the defense’s request for a bill of particulars.

Amendola re-requested that information last week, seeking specific information about each of the 52 counts Sandusky faces. Amendola wants to know the exact time, date and place the alleged incidents happened as well as the ages of the accusers at the time.

Prosecutors had responded to Amendola’s initial request for that information by providing a date range and places of alleged abuse for each accuser.

Jury selection is scheduled to start May 14.

Sandusky, 68, faces charges he abused 10 boys from 1996 to 2009. He denies the allegations.

To read more, visit www.centredaily.com.

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