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Jerry Sandusky-Sex Abuse Case - Essay Example

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Jerry Sandusky-Sex Abuse Case Case Introduction Jerry Sandusky sex abuse case is currently in the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, posed to move with the finalization of jury, as stated by Reuters. The Supreme Court has rejected the pleas of Sandusky’s attorneys asking additional time to critique the proof, which the High Court had already rejected…
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Jerry Sandusky-Sex Abuse Case
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Jerry Sandusky-Sex Abuse Case Case Introduction Jerry Sandusky sex abuse case is currently in the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, posed to move with thefinalization of jury, as stated by Reuters. The Supreme Court has rejected the pleas of Sandusky’s attorneys asking additional time to critique the proof, which the High Court had already rejected. The case briefing is that Sandusky, 68, an ex-Penn State assistant football coach, has been blamed for sexually abusing 10 boys across a 15-year period, some of them in Penn State football facilities (Simpson, 2012). Various news media have published this news, following dissimilar approaches. Although it seems quirky to find fault in media approach as the Sandusky case has been in the news for years but the local media initially downplayed the matter of the case, showing satisfaction over the PR handling by the Penn State’s football program. Protest marches in favor of the university’s clean image were given full camera coverage by CNN, ESPN, and other news agencies, which raise questions over media presentation of the different insignificant happening, creating stir among the people who were feeling ashamed that in stead of coming in the streets in favor of those 10-15 young boys who were abused for years by their football coach, Sandusky, students of the Penn university were expressing their anger that such publicity given to the Sandusky case could tarnish the image of the university (Rogers, 2012). Can media be blamed for covering this protest? Is it not the ethical responsibility of journalists to cover all kind of news? If the print and online media do not cover the different perspective of the society represented by student community, coming out in the streets protesting the media publicity given to the Sandusky sex abuse case, which is the equal responsibility of various media irrespective of whether it is print or digital media, it will be blamed for not showing what other stakeholders of society think and perceive (Rogers, 2012). The judge Cleland issued a verdict not allowing reporters to use internet media such as Twitter and email to report the proceedings of the case from the court premises itself. Internet media poses a challenge for the media and the journalist community to report latest news without wasting any time. Various electronic and print media including The New York Times, CNN, The Wall Street journal, the Harrisburg Patriot-News, the Pennsylvania Newspapers Association and others expressed their opposition to the judge Cleland’s orders, not granting the verbatim tweeting and emailing of court happenings, which has been a tradition with various news agencies on pre-trial happenings. Judge Cleland, on the other hand, is of the view that such tweets could hamper the process of jury selection and fair trial, affecting the delivery of justice (Simpson, 2012). One cannot acclaim it as the writer’s bias if reporting on a concurrent case proceedings are covered both from the court room and in the street outbursts over the reporting of a case. Online media reporting can in some cases, as in Sandusky sex abuse case, affect the court proceedings, which the judge Cleland has rightly focused by not permitting Tweeting and email updating on the case because society stakeholders may not come readily to offer themselves as jury members because of the wide publicity given to the Sandusky case by media. The reputation of the jurors could be at stake for taking the oath to be impartial in decision-making. Even other members of the legal community also are of the view that selection of jurors could be affected because of the youth charity practiced by Sandusky (DeLong, 2012). According to Brian McMonagle, a Philadelphia defense advocate not related with this case, “It’s going to be a very, very difficult chore to pick a jury in that community” (DeLong, 2012). The Sandusky sex abuse case is at a critical stage that benefit of doubt can tilt the balance in favor of either party. That’s why prosecutors requested the Judge Cleland to select jurors from another county. The past happenings related to Paterno’s firing and image loss of the university because of this scandal could take its toll through jurors not feeling sympathetic with the prosecutors (DeLong, 2012). In this context, it needs to be identified that news agencies, including The Associated Press, generally do not disclose the identity of alleged victims of sex crimes. Online media should also not play a part by cooperating with the judiciary and not disclosing the identity of the sex abuse victims. They should support judge Cleland by practicing restrained reporting, not Tweeting and emailing from the court premises the sudden turns in the case. References Delong, K. (2012, June 4). Jury selection begins Tuesday in Sandusky sexual abuse case. AP. Retrieved from http://fox6now.com/2012/06/04/jury-selection-begins-tuesday-in-sandusky-sexual-abuse-case/ Rogers, T. (2012). Blaming the messenger won't make Penn State's Sex Abuse Scandal go away. About.com Guide. Retrieved from http://journalism.about.com/od/trends/a/Blaming-The-Messenger-Wo-Not-Make-Penn-States-Sex-Abuse-Scandal-Go-Away.htm Simpson, I. (2012, Jun 5). State court rejects bid to delay Penn State sex abuse case. Reuters. Retrieved from http://news.yahoo.com/state-court-rejects-bid-delay-penn-state-sex-115951985--nfl.html Read More
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