Former Penn State assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky on Wednesday was sent to serve his child molestation prison sentence at an institution in far southwestern Pennsylvania that includes most of the state’s death row inmates.
The Corrections Department said Sandusky was transferred to Greene State Prison after being evaluated at a facility outside Harrisburg. Prison officials said he will be housed in protective custody.
”We make individual decisions based on facts,” Corrections Secretary John Wetzel said in a written statement. ”Given the high profile nature of this individual, coupled with the nature of his crimes, this makes him very vulnerable in a prison setting.”
Sandusky, 68, was convicted this summer of 45 criminal counts for sexual abuse of 10 boys over 15 years. He has maintained his innocence and is pursuing appeals.
The 30- to 60-year sentence imposed Oct. 9 means he faces the likelihood of dying in prison.
He will not have a cellmate and will be subject to heightened supervision and an escort when not in his cell. He will get an hour of individual exercise five days a week and three showers a week.
He will eat meals in his cell. Prison services such as counseling, religion, medications and treatment programming will also occur in his cell.
All visits will be non-contact, meaning no touching is allowed. He may have a TV, radio and other property, according to the Corrections Department, if he is deemed to be in ”compliant adjustment.”
Messages left for his attorneys were not immediately returned Wednesday.
The State Correctional Institution at Greene, as it is formally known, is a maximum-security prison that houses 1,800 inmates and employs 700 people.
Sandusky was arrested a year ago after a lengthy investigation, along with two university administrators accused of lying to the grand jury that handled the Sandusky case and failing to properly report his suspected child abuse.
Tim Curley, the athletic director on leave until the last year of his contract expires, and retired vice president Gary Schultz await trial in January and deny the allegations.
The Sandusky scandal led to the firing of longtime head coach Joe Paterno, who died in January, and the ouster of university president Graham Spanier, who hasn’t been charged with any crime. It shattered the football program’s image and led to significant changes in the university’s policies and governance.