BELLEFONTE, Pa. -- The judge overseeing Jerry Sandusky's child sexual abuse case on Friday denied the defense's request to have the charges dismissed, leaving all 52 counts intact with opening statements three days away.
Judge John Cleland's three-paragraph order didn't explain the reasoning for turning down a set of defense motions.
Sandusky's attorney had asked for all charges to be thrown out or at least for Cleland to conduct a hearing to see if some charges were supported by sufficient facts.
Sandusky, 68, a retired assistant Penn State football coach, is accused of sexually abusing 10 boys over a 15-year span, allegations he has consistently denied.
Defense attorney Karl Rominger and a spokesman for the attorney general's office both declined to comment.
A panel of seven women and five men was selected during two days of jury selection this week, and the trial is expected to last several weeks.
Sandusky's arrest in November rocked the sports world as a grand jury returned a report accusing him of grooming, then sexually assaulting, boys through a charity he founded. The grand jury found that some of the abuse happened at Penn State's football facilities.
Legendary head football coach Joe Paterno was fired just days after Sandusky was charged along with two Penn State administrators accused of perjury and failing to report the abuse. Penn State trustees have said Paterno should have done more after an assistant told him of suspected abuse.
Paterno's abrupt dismissal touched off riots in the town of State College, an area often referred to as Happy Valley.
Key prosecution witnesses expected to testify include many of the accusers, and Mike McQueary, an assistant coach who has said he witnessed Sandusky and a boy, naked in a team shower, in 2001.
The grand jury's reports - a second was issued with additional charges in December - said Sandusky had frequent illicit contact with boys he met through his charity, The Second Mile, in the late 1990s through 2008, when an allegation of abuse at a local high school where Sandusky volunteered as a coach prompted the investigation.
In interviews following his arrest, Sandusky acknowledged showering with young boys and embracing them naked, but he denied sexually abusing them.
Paterno's firing stemmed from the report by McQueary to him about seeing Sandusky in the shower with a boy. Paterno passed the complaint on to his boss, athletic director Tim Curley.
Paterno died of lung cancer less than three months after his firing.
More than a decade would pass before McQueary's report helped lead to charges.
Curley and former vice president Gary Schultz were charged with perjury and failing to report suspected child abuse in connection with McQueary's report. They are awaiting trial and maintain their innocence.
Role: Former assistant football coach and founder of The Second Mile charity for children, accused of molesting boys over a 15-year period. Background: Arrested in November after a long investigation by a statewide grand jury. He had been a very successful defensive coach for the Nittany Lions for 30 years, and prosecutors say he used his fame in the community to attract victims. Charges: Involuntary deviate sexual intercourse, indecent assault of a young child, unlawful contact with minors, corruption of minors, endangering the welfare of children. Status: Awaits trial, with jury selection scheduled for Tuesday.
Role: Married to Jerry Sandusky. Background: Dottie Sandusky has stood by her husband, posting his bail, accompanying him to court proceedings and issuing a statement in December that proclaimed his innocence and said accusers were making up stories. She is not charged.
Role: Penn State athletic director, on leave while he fights criminal charges for actions related to the Sandusky scandal. Background: Curley fielded a complaint about Sandusky in a team shower with a boy in early 2001, and told a grand jury he instructed Sandusky not to be inside Penn State athletic facilities with any young people. Charges: Failure to properly report suspected child abuse and perjury for lying to the grand jury. He's not on trial with Sandusky, denies the allegations and is seeking to have the charges dismissed.
Role: Penn State vice president for business and finance, now retired. Background: Schultz told the grand jury that head coach Joe Paterno and assistant Mike McQueary reported the 2001 shower incident "in a very general way" but did not provide details. Charges: Failure to properly report suspected child abuse and perjury for lying to the grand jury. He's not on trial with Sandusky, denies the allegations and is seeking to have the charges dismissed.
Role: Assistant Penn State football coach. Was a graduate assistant in 2001, when he says he witnessed Jerry Sandusky and a boy naked together in a team shower. McQueary took his complaint to Paterno, who alerted university administrators. Background: McQueary testified at a court hearing in December that he "believed Jerry was sexually molesting" the boy and "having some type of intercourse with him."
Role: Defense attorney for Jerry Sandusky. Background: Amendola has been second-guessed for allowing Sandusky to go on network television and speak at length with a reporter for The New York Times after his arrest. Has won several legal battles for Sandusky, including getting him released on bail and fighting the prosecution's effort to have the case heard by a jury from outside the State College area. His office is in State College.
Role: Another defense attorney for Jerry Sandusky. Background: Rominger suggested in media interviews that Sandusky might have been teaching "basic hygiene skills" to some of the youths, such as how to put soap on their bodies. His office is in Carlisle.
Joseph McGettigan III
Role: Lead prosecutor. Background: McGettigan, currently senior deputy attorney general, is a veteran prosecutor with stints in the Philadelphia and Delaware County district attorneys' offices and the U.S. attorney's office. McGettigan prosecuted John du Pont, the chemical fortune heir who killed an Olympic gold medal-winning wrestler at his palatial estate in 1996. He's known as an aggressive, feisty lawyer.
Role: Judge presiding over Sandusky's trial. Background: Cleland is a semi-retired senior judge from McKean County in western Pennsylvania. Known as courteous and fair-minded, Cleland previously chaired a state panel that investigated a nationally reported scandal in Luzerne County involving the trading of juvenile-detention suspects for cash.
Role: The longtime football coach was told by McQueary in 2001 that he saw Sandusky and Victim No. 2 in a shower on the Penn State campus and, in turn, told Curley and Schultz. Background: The head coach at Penn State from 1966 through 2011, and major college football's winningest, he offered to resign at the end of the 2011 season amid the uproar after Sandusky's arrest Nov. 6. The Penn State Board of Trustees, however, ousted him for what was called his "failure of leadership" surrounding allegations about Sandusky. He died of lung cancer Jan. 22.
Role: Married to Paterno for almost 50 years, she raised five children with him and passionately defended her husband during the scandal and after he died. It's unclear whether she might testify.
Role: Now the governor of Pennsylvania, he was attorney general when the investigation into Sandusky was launched by state prosecutors. Background: Corbett is an ex-officio member of the Penn State Board of Trustees, although he did not actively participate until after Sandusky was charged in December.
Role: Pennsylvania attorney general, whose office is prosecuting Sandusky. Background: A career prosecutor in the Pittsburgh area, Kelly inherited the Sandusky probe from Corbett when she was confirmed as his temporary successor as attorney general. She leaves office in January.
Role: Pennsylvania State Police commissioner. Background: Noonan garnered national attention two days after Sandusky's arrest when he criticized Paterno, a Penn State and sports icon, for failing his "moral responsibility" to do more when McQueary told him of the 2001 shower incident.
Role: Former CEO of The Second Mile, the charity Jerry Sandusky founded. Background: Raykovitz led the charity for almost 30 years and was a longtime friend of Sandusky's. Raykovitz testified before the grand jury that recommended indicting Sandusky on child abuse charges. He resigned from The Second Mile soon after the scandal broke, and board members later complained that Raykovitz hadn't told them enough about earlier allegations against Sandusky.