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Tuesday
Nov152011

Jerry Sandusky Denies Child Sex Charges, Says He 'Horsed Around with Kids'

Pennsylvania Office of Attorney General(NEW YORK) -- Former Penn State football coach Jerry Sandusky has broken his silence on the charges of child molestation against him, insisting in a telephone interview with sports reporter Bob Costas on NBC Monday night that he isn't a pedophile and was just "horsing around" with boys.

"Am I sexually attracted to underage boys…sexually attracted?" Sandusky asked when questioned directly.  "You know...no I enjoy young people I...I love to be around them.  Umm I, no...I'm not sexually attracted to young boys."

Sandusky hesitated when asked by Costas about the numerous eyewitness accounts of his alleged sexual assaults on adolescents.

"Well I could say that, you know, I have done some of those things," Sandusky said when asked by Costas if he is completely innocent and falsely accused in every aspect.

"I have horsed around with kids.  I -- I have showered after workouts.  I have hugged them and I have touched their leg.  Without intent of sexual contact," Sandusky said.

The charges that Sandusky sexually abused eight boys over 15 years have rocked the university and led to the firing of the college president and iconic football coach Joe Paterno.  Sandusky was arrested on Nov. 5 and charged with 40 counts of sexually abusing young boys. He is free on $100,000 bail.

The 67-year-old retired coach founded the charity The Second Mile for at-risk youth, and some are now saying the non-profit functioned as a recruiting ground for his predatory actions.  Speaking with Costas, Sandusky said that he isn't sexually attracted to young boys. When he was asked about an incident where two janitors said they witnessed him performing a sex act on a boy in the showers, the former coach denied it.  He then dismissed Costas' question as to what their motivation to fabricate such a lie would be, saying, "you'd have to ask them."

This reaction to such a line of questioning may be a legal strategy casting Sandusky as a fun-loving sportsman who liked to play around in the locker room with boys, but not in a sexual manner.  This position was repeated by Sandusky's attorney Joseph Amendola on CNN Monday night.

"Jerry Sandusky is a big overgrown kid.  He's a jock," Amendola said.  "For anybody who's ever played sports, you get showers after you work out.  I mean when people hear he got showers with kids -- oh my goodness you know like...he got showers with kids...that makes him guilty right?"

But then-graduate assistant Mike McQueary told prosecutors that in 2002 he walked in the football locker room after-hours and allegedly saw a 10-year-old-boy with his hands up against the wall, being raped in the shower by Sandusky.

In his interview with Costas, Sandusky brushed off McQueary's account as just horseplay between the child and him.

"Ok, we were showering and horsing around, and he actually turned all of the showers on and was actually sliding across the floor," Sandusky said.  "And umm...we were, as I recall, possibly like snapping a towel, and horseplay."

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

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