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Victim #1 In Sandusky Case Speaks In SD

Kealey Bultena

The first person to reveal a famous football coach molested him says the justice system should better help victims of sex abuse. Aaron Fischer was a high school student when he told authorities Jerry Sandusky sexually abused him. Fischer is in Sioux Falls for the Violent Crime and Sex Trafficking conference to share his story with advocates and health workers, and he admits he’s not done healing from the abuse.

Dawn Hennessy says she knew something was wrong when her respectful teenager became unrecognizable.

"He’s not coming in when the street lights are coming on. He’s swearing at me. He’s yelling at me, telling me he wants to burn me in my sleep," Hennessy says. "I’m like, what is going on with my child?"

Hennessy says she suspected a problem with the friendship famed Penn State coach and high school football volunteer Jerry Sandusky had with her son.

Aaron Fischer says Sandusky sexually abused him, and it took years for authorities to prosecute the powerful man. Fischer says people knew him as Victim Number One, because he was the first to speak up – not the first person Sandusky assaulted.

"I know that my mom knows, because she read the transcripts. I know she knows. Everybody else knows she knows. But I have yet to actually come out and tell her exactly what happened in the basement of that house. I haven’t brought myself to do it. Maybe later down the line once I feel more comfortable with what actually happened," Fischer says.

Fischer says abusers keep victims in fear, so they don’t tell. He says people in power accused him of lying or broke protocols to protect his predator. Fischer says that’s the wrong way to treat victims of heinous crimes.

In 2012, Jerry Sandusky was convicted on 45 charges of sexually abusing young boys. He’s serving 30 to 60 years in prison, effectively a life sentence.

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