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Sandusky Case: No Subpoenas Fully Quashed, Judge Says

by on May 09, 2012 3:48 PM

Judge John M. Cleland made no rulings at Wednesday’s hearing but listened to the requests to quash subpoenas and addressed the motions filed earlier in the morning.

Cleland did not acknowledge the defense's motion for continuance filed Wednesday, but stressed the need to expedite the overall pre-trial processes because of the closeness of the trial, as it is now scheduled to start June 5.

Divided into five groups that represented the various school districts, children youth service bureaus, government agencies, institutions and independent psychologists, the attorneys made the argument that the subpoenas their clients were served were too broad and asked for information that was not relevant to the case.

Joseph Amendola, Jerry Sandusky’s defense attorney, had requested all documents pertaining to the victims associated with each of the subpoenas, though Amendola specified in court that his priority is in obtaining specific records regarding the alleged victims, not necessarily every grade dating back to kindergarten. 

"So what you really want is mental health records," Cleland said. 

Amendola answered yes, responding that he wants to use the information to determine whether the alleged victims were mentally and emotionally sound prior to their meeting Sandusky.

Cleland said he would not be quashing any subpoena in full, but rather will just cross out what information does not need to be handed over to the defense.

He denied a motion to quash a subpoena filed by the National Center for Victims on the grounds that an amicus brief, the kind which the Center filed, is not routine during pre-trial proceedings.

A few notable details were the fact that in the case of The Second Mile, the charity for afflicted children founded by Sandusky, alleged victim Nos. 3 and 7 objected to having any of their identifying information released.

The attorney for The Second Mile said he was retained by the charity to aid in the investigation of what the institution could have done or can do, moving forward, to prevent a crisis. The Second Mile did not hire its attorney to investigate the alleged actions of Sandusky. 

Another issue arose when the attorney for Dr. Alycia Chambers, the psychologist who worked with at least one of the alleged victims, said through her attorney that the documents being requested no longer exist. The document released to MSNBC was done so by mistake, Chambers’ attorney said.

Dr. Chambers called Sandusky "a likely pedophile" in 1998, but Chambers' attorney said that document no longer exists. Her attorney said an opinion is susceptible to reflect private information, none of which can be disclosed.

Cleland found time to address the motion filed this morning by the defense that stated it needs paper copies of the discovery material handed over by the prosecution. This information includes information that was taken from the Sandusky home computer, The Second Mile data and phone records seized from former Penn State football head coach Joe Paterno’s office.

Amendola said the defense is not equipped with the software to access the material. The prosecution offered the services of its experts to assist the defense in getting the material it needs.

Cleland made no ruling on any motion Wednesday, but adjourned court with counsel retiring to his chambers.

Related coverage:

Laura Nichols is a news reporter and @LC_Nichols on Twitter.
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Penn State, State College Noon News & Features: Wednesday, May 9
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