Pennsylvania Court Issues Order Protecting Identity of Penn State Sexual Abuse Victim

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A judge granted the motion by two of the alleged victim's attorneys, Andrew Shubin and Justine Andronici, to keep his identity secret during the criminal sexual abuse trial against Jerry Sandusky.

Confidentiality is an essential protection for victims of sexual abuse, said attorney Justine Adronici.

A judge assigned by the Pennsylvania Administrative of the Courts today ordered the parties in the Jerry Sandusky criminal sexual abuse case not to disclose the identity of one of the alleged victims, whom the court referred to in its order as “John Doe.” The order also requires attorneys, the court clerk, and the District Court to keep “John Doe” and his family’s identities confidential. State College attorneys Andrew Shubin and Justine Andronici, who represent John Doe in connection the Penn State sexual abuse case, filed the motion today in the Centre County Court of Common Pleas. The case is Commonwealth of Pennsylvania v. Gerald A. Sandusky, No. CP-14-MD-1901-11.

Attorney Shubin explains: “We expect the lawyers representing Jerry Sandusky and the other Penn State defendants to file court documents that would publicly identify our client or his family. Right now our client and the other victims we are speaking with are terrified about being publicly identified, and we will continue to do everything legally possible to prevent that from happening.”

Andronici, who has extensive experience working with victims of abuse, said she appreciated the court’s willingness to protect the identities of Penn State alleged sexual abuse victims. “Confidentiality is an essential protection for victims of sexual abuse,” Andronici said, “and it is especially important in this case because of the intense media attention and the pressure that many of these victims are under. That pressure will certainly grow as the lawyers representing the criminal defendants attempt to attack the victims’ credibility – a tactic that they have already employed in the national media.”

The victim referred to in today’s order as “John Doe” is represented by a legal team consisting of Shubin, Andronici, David J. Marshall of the Washington, D.C., law firm of Katz, Marshall & Banks, and University of Pennsylvania Law School Professor Seth Kreimer.

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David J. Marshall

Andrew Shubin