Sandusky Averts Trial on New Sex-Abuse Charges

     HARRISBURG, Pa. (CN) — The clock ran out for Jerry Sandusky to face sexual-assault claims over his encounter with a child in 1988, the Pennsylvania Superior Court ruled.
     Identified only by his initials in the court record, AS Jr. asked the state in October 2014 to charge Sandusky with having sexually assaulted him in 1988. A.S. would have been 16 at the time of his abuse by the veteran Penn State assistant football coach.
     He came forward two years after Sandusky received a sentence of 30 to 60 years in prison for 45 counts of child sex abuse,
     Prosecutors have maintained that it is too late for AS to bring such claims, however, and the Superior Court agreed with the state last week.
     Writing for a three-person panel, Judge Jacqueline Shogan says the statute of limitations ran out for AS a full decade before he sued.
     Since Sandusky retired from Penn State in 1999, according to the Aug. 25 ruling, the five-year window granted by the public-employee exception to the statute of limitations gave victims until Dec. 29, 2004, to bring claims.
     Pennsylvania lawmakers did recently extend the statute of limitations to a victim’s 50th birthday, but Shogan said AS is not entitled to benefit from this change.
     This is because the extension of Act 179 took effect in 2007, well after the deadline of Dec. 29, 2004, had passed, according to the eight-page ruling.
     Shogan was joined in the opinion by Judges Anne Lazarus and Patricia Jenkins.
     Their ruling reverses a 2015 decision by the Centre County Court of Common Pleas, which had found it was not too late for AS to sue.
     While this appeal was pending, a jury convicted Pennsylvania Attorney General Kathleen Kane of leaking secret grand jury materials to exact political revenge.
     Kane, who had been the first Democrat and first woman to serve as Pennsylvania attorney general, resigned earlier this month.
     Facing prison time and the loss of her law license, Kane has vowed to appeal.
     Sandusky has also been fighting this month to overturn his sex-abuse convictions on appeal.

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