Jerry Sandusky’s former daughter-in-law today railed against a court ruling allowing the accused child molester to visit with his grandchildren, saying that Sandusky had inappropriately touched her son and she suspected he was grooming the boy for sexual abuse.
Jill Thomas, who was married to Sandusky’s son Matt, said she would continue to fight against Sandusky being allowed to visit with his grandchildren.
Earlier today, a judge in Centre County, Pa., granted Sandusky’s request for relaxed bail terms that allow him to visit with all of his grandchildren except for Thomas’s children, due to her objections.
“I do not believe it is safe for my children, or any children, to be around Jerry Sandusky,” Thomas said.
Sandusky, who is charged with 50 counts of molestation, said at last week’s hearing that his grandchildren had been begging to see or talk to “Pop” on the phone since he was arrested and placed under house arrest.
Jill Thomas said that she had fought today’s ruling. Thomas noted that she had tried to testify at the hearing last week but that her testimony was submitted instead as a written summary by the state attorney general to Judge John Cleland.
In an angry statement released today, Thomas said the summary did not accurately or completely reflect the danger Sandusky posed to children.
“Although I have kept silent up until now to protect my children and my family’s privacy, I can no longer keep silent about Jerry Sandusky’s request to be permitted to see my children,” Thomas said. “Shortly after news of the child sexual abuse criminal charges against Jerry Sandusky became public, my children reported to me that Jerry Sandusky, their grandfather, had inappropriately touched my son. I was devastated by this news.”
Thomas said she reported her son’s claim to authorities, who decided there was not enough evidence to charge Sandusky with a crime. But a psychologist who worked with her son after the revelation said Sandusky may have been grooming the boy for sexual abuse, Thomas said.
Sandusky’s attorney, Joe Amendola, did not return calls for comment.
The court ruling today also dismissed a request that Sandusky be banned from the deck in his backyard after neighbors said Sandusky was watching children from his deck.