Pennsylvania Coalition Against Rape Vice President Kristin Houser says convicted child molester and former Penn State Assistant Football Coach Jerry Sandusky did a good job of grooming his victims. She says grooming is a method or pattern of behavior a perpetrator goes through to gain the trust of a child, parents and others around the child.
“Another way of saying it might be hoodwinking. It’s how you present yourself as a trustworthy person who is only having a healthy interest in the child so that you can gain access, and also it could include a progression of things to introduce physical touch to the child so that becomes normal, and then those touches become progressively more and more inappropriate, and that is definitely a pattern that was revealed in this case.”
Houser says it looks like Sandusky groomed the entire State College community so that he got access to kids by presenting himself as God’s gift to at-risk children who needed help. She says Sandusky’s charity, The Second Mile, helped a lot of children who he did not abuse, but that was part of his charade. He picked the ones who were the least likely to tell, and if they did tell his good deeds would make their claims hard to believe.