By Sean Walton
Disgraced former Penn State assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky was resentenced Friday to 30 to 60 years in prison — the same penalty as before — for sexually abusing children.
Sandusky was wearing a yellow prison jumpsuit with his hands cuffed as he made his way inside the Centre County court in Bellefonte, Pa. He again asserted his innocence, choked up twice in brief remarks to the judge and told his supporters he loves them.
The 75 year old was convicted in June 2012 of 45 counts of child sex abuse over several years. Eight young men testified that Sandusky, who founded a charity for at-risk youth, subjected them to a range of abuse, from grooming to violent attacks.
A state appeals court this year turned down most of Sandusky’s arguments seeking a new trial, but said laws mandating sentence minimums in place at the time of his October 2012 sentencing had since changed. Under the new law, a jury would not have the power to go below the minimum sentence.
The Superior Court opinion in February cited a U.S. Supreme Court ruling that said any fact that increases the sentence for a given crime must be submitted to jurors and established beyond a reasonable doubt.
Sandusky’s lawyers last month initiated a federal court action seeking a new trial or release from prison.
The university has paid more than $100 million to people who said they were abused by Sandusky. His November 2011 arrest upended the school’s historic football program and prompted the firing of legendary head coach Joe Paterno.
Then-University President Graham Spanier was also removed. Sandusky was a coach at Penn State from 1969 to 1999 and was the defensive coordinator for the last 22 of those years.
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