State House Sound Bites

Capitol reporter Katie Meyer covers Pennsylvania politics and issues at the Pennsylvania state capitol.

The State House Sound Bites Podcast is now called State of the State and is a part of PA Post, a digital-first, citizen-focused news organization to hold Pennsylvania’s government accountable to its citizens.

Sandusky isn't the only one giving jailhouse interviews

Written by Mary Wilson, Former Capitol Bureau Chief | Mar 25, 2013 2:05 PM

Jerry Sandusky’s jailhouse interview by a documentary filmmaker has put the convicted pedophile back in the national spotlight.

Excerpts of recorded calls with Sandusky aired on NBC’s “Today” show Monday morning.

“It’s our understanding this was just a phone call,” said Sue McNaughton, spokeswoman for the state Department of Corrections. Or, rather, several phone calls – state prison inmates’ phone calls are limited to 15 minutes, and the excerpts that aired on “Today” are believed to be part of 3 ½ hours of taped interviews.

“It’s really not I would say uncommon for people to make the phone calls – for inmates to make the phone calls – and then for a TV crew to tape the other end,” said McNaughton. “They’ll put the phone call on a speaker and then they’ll tape it.

She said Sandusky would not have been able to receive money for the interviews.

“The inmate would use money on their account to pay” for the phone call,” said McNaughton. “They can purchase pre-paid debit cards through the inmate commissaries and then use that money to pay for the phone call.”

Inmates are allowed to receive money from family members, but McNaughton couldn’t say whether her agency has seen any unusual spikes in contributions to Sandusky’s account.


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