Appeals Court Rules to Reinstate Jerry Sandusky’s Pension

PennsylvaniaA Pennsylvania appeals court has ruled that convicted child sex abuser Jerry Sandusky should receive his pension benefits from Pennsylvania State University. The pension benefits had been halted after Sandusky’s conviction on 45 counts of child sexual abuse in 2012.

“There exists no statute which affirmatively requires the board to deny [Sandusky’s] withheld retirement allowances,” Judge Dan Pellegrini wrote in the Commonwealth Court opinion, per PennLive.com. “Indeed, the Retirement Code affirmatively required the board to grant the pension benefits,” he added.

Sandusky’s lawyers argued that their client was entitled to the pension benefits because he was not an employee at the time the crimes were committed. A provision of the state Pension Forfeiture Act denies pension to school employees convicted of child sex crimes, but it didn’t go into effect until 2004, several years after Sandusky had retired, PennLive noted.

Evidence presented at his criminal trial in 2012 revealed that the sexual abuse had been ongoing for at least 15 years. Such evidence makes the appeals court decision a curious one at best. The common sense notion that a criminal should not be able to reap the rewards derived from his criminal activity should have prevailed. Sandusky was able to lure unsuspecting children precisely because of the position he held at Penn State. His employment gave him the opportunity to prey on children and sexually abuse them. Such a person should not receive a pension from the university.

We only hope that there may be a way for Sandusky’s victims to garnish his pension income every month. That would be some small justice.

Dumas Law Group has law offices in Portland, Oregon and serves clients in Oregon, Washington, Idaho, and other states.

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