The defense in the Jerry Sandusky child sex-abuse case will not be receiving more details about the alleged assaults because prosecutors have said they can’t produce such information, the judge in the case ruled Tuesday.
Judge John Cleland dismissed the defense request for “a more certain bill of particulars,” arguing that it was moot. In his decision, Cleland noted that the prosecution says it lacks details beyond those already supplied.
Any order requiring details that don’t exist would be “futile,” Cleland wrote.
Sandusky, a former assistant football coach at Penn State, is charged with sexually abusing 10 boys over 15 years. His trial is scheduled to start mid-May, and the battle over specificity is part of the pretrial litigation that marks what is expected to be a highly publicized trial.
The prosecution has argued that the additional details don’t exist because the victims were children.
But defense lawyer Joe Amendola said he will seek to dismiss all charges against his client on the grounds of “lack of specificity.”
What the judge is “saying is exactly what the case law says can result in a case being chucked,” Amendola told the Associated Press on Tuesday. “If the commonwealth can’t be more specific, the defendant can’t adequately present their defense.”
Sandusky, 68, is accused of abusing children that came through a charity he founded. Some of the alleged incidents took place at Penn State, where Sandusky would take the children on field trips, according to the grand jury report on the scandal.
The scandal has led not just to criminal charges against the assistant coach, but the university’s trustees fired head football coach Joe Paterno and president Graham Spanier. Paterno died of lung cancer in January at 85.