Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Perhaps we now understand why Jerry Sandusky's attorney believes in his innocence

The man defending Jerry Sandusky on charges of sexual assault has a bit of a history of his own with underage people, as The Daily reports.
Defense attorney Joe Amendola, 63, representing Sandusky in the sexual molestation case roiling Penn State and Joe Paterno’s legendary football program, impregnated a teenager and later married her, The Daily has learned.

According to documents filed with Centre County Courthouse, Amendola served as the attorney for Mary Iavasile’s emancipation petition on Sept. 3, 1996, just weeks before her 17th birthday.

The emancipation request said Mary graduated from high school in two years with a 3.69 grade point average and maintained a full-time job — but makes no mention of any special relationship between her and her lawyer.

Roughly around the same time, however, Iavasile became pregnant with Amendola’s child, and gave birth before she turned 18, her mother, Janet Iavasile, alleged in an interview with The Daily.
Mr. Amendola also might have set up Bob Costas, who interviewed Sandusky yesterday. The New York Times explains how the phone interview came together.
When Bob Costas arrived at the studios of the new NBC newsmagazine program “ Rock Center” Monday night, he was prepared to interview Joseph Amendola, the lawyer for Jerry Sandusky, the man at the center of the pedophilia accusations that have rocked Penn State University.
“About 10 or 15 minutes prior to the start of the interview,” Mr. Costas said, “Amendola says to us, on his own: ‘What if I could get Sandusky on the phone?’ ”
The interview that resulted with Mr. Sandusky was the first time the former Penn State assistant football coach has spoken publicly since being charged with 40 counts related to child abuse.
Mr. Costas, who has been widely praised for his questioning and his demeanor in the interview, said in a telephone conversation Tuesday, “Some of the preparation I had done for the Amendola interview informed the questions I asked Sandusky, but I had not specifically prepared to interview Sandusky.”
And as the New York Daily News suggests, the issue of why Amendola would also set up his client is being discussed by other attorneys.
Defense lawyers across the country are still baffled about why Amedola gave his blessing to Sandusky's appearance on NBC's "Rock Center" on Monday. During the interview with Bob Costas, Sandusky said he was not guilty of the criminal charges he faces, but acknowledged that he did engage with inappropriate behavior with children, including taking showers with boys.
Sandusky's statements will certainly be scrutinized and used by prosecutors as well as attorneys representing victims who file civil suits.
Reuters spoke to multiple people within the legal community who came up with the same response -- the interview was a bad idea.

Returning to Amendola and his escapades with a then-teenage girl, at least one blogger has come up with a photo of him and his now former wife.



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