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Sandusky takes stand during appeals hearing

Former Penn State assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky testified Friday during an appeals hearing seeking to have his 45-count conviction on child molestation charges thrown out or to receive a new trial.

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Convicted child molester Jerry Sandusky (C), a former assistant football coach at Penn State University, leaves after his appeal hearing at the Centre County Courthouse in Bellefonte, Pennsylvania, U.S. on October 29, 2015. REUTERS/Pat Little/File Photo

Former Penn State assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky testified Friday during an appeals hearing seeking to have his 45-count conviction on child molestation charges thrown out or to receive a new trial.

The 72-year-old Sandusky denied the charges as "disgusting and dirty" and testified that his original attorney misled him into giving an NBC interview on the eve of his 2012 trial.

Sandusky, wearing an orange prison jumpsuit and white sneakers as he walked into the Centre County courthouse in Bellefonte, Pa., accompanied by guards with his hands handcuffed, denied he is serial sexual predator, testifying he has never had oral or anal sex with anyone.

"Absolutely not. ... That idea was totally foreign to me," Sandusky said Friday. "That (sexual contact with children) is disgusting and dirty, and something that I never would have thought of, and something that I never did with anybody.

"I believe there are two sides of this story. My side still hasn't been told."

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Sandusky was convicted on 45 of 48 counts related to the sexual assault of 10 boys on June 22, 2012, and was sentenced to 30 to 60 years in prison.

Eight young men testified at trial that they were abused as children by Sandusky, who spent decades at Penn State as an assistant coach under Joe Paterno before his retirement in 1999.

Paterno served as the Nittany Lions' head coach from 1966 until his retirement in 2011. He died on Jan. 22, 2012 at the age of 85.

Sandusky, who is serving a 30- to 60-year sentence at the Greene County prison, is seeking a retrial under Pennsylvania's Post-Conviction Relief Act that applies to cases confined to newly discovered evidence, constitutional violations and ineffective lawyering.

Sandusky previously lost direct appeals to the state's Supreme and Superior courts.

Sandusky said he learned he would be doing an interview with NBC's Bob Costas just minutes before it occurred and that his original defense lawyer, Joseph Amendola, strongly advised him against taking the stand.

"I had no idea what was going to happen," Sandusky said. "I thought maybe they were just going to tape my response of my innocence. Amendola didn't suggest any questions they might ask."

Related Topics: CRIME
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