Thursday, January 31

Who really failed to "report" the 2001 incident?

In the rush to judgment of PSU officials, many believed that Sandusky getting cleared in 1998 resulted in PSU officials thinking 2001 was a repeat of the prior incident.   However, few have considered the same could be said for CYS and DPW officials, who had been lulled into complacency about Sandusky for decades.

By
Ray Blehar

There are two major problems with the allegations that PSU officials didn't report Sandusky to authorities in 2001.   The first, and most obvious problem, is that under the law, PSU officials DID report it to the proper authorities.  In fact, they did it twice.  The second problem is that no one has considered that the PSU report was ignored by authorities.

Report to CYS
Gary Schultz and Wendell Courtney recalled reporting the incident to Children and Youth Services. Schultz's statement is on page 213 of the Preliminary Perjury hearing transcripts, while Courtney's is on page 84 of the Freeh Report.

For some reason, these reports were immediately discounted because PSU didn't report the incident to DPW.  Legally, a report to DPW is not required if a report was made to CYS.  CYS has the responsibility, once notified, to file an abuse report with ChildLine.

Despite the Freeh team spending nine months on the PSU campus, there is no indication in the Freeh Report that the team took any investigative steps to determine if that report occurred.  Certainly, a group that allegedly could pin point the exact date and time of an internet search conducted 11 years prior (to find the chair of Second Mile) should have the wherewithal to check some phone records at PSU or CYS or check call logs to determine if a report was made.  

But those investigative steps weren't taken.

Also, few have considered that the OAG investigator did not check to see if a report was made in 2001.  Detective Anthony Sassano stated at the Preliminary Perjury hearing that he contacted CYS and DPW to check on a 2002 report of abuse.   Sassano indicated the agency officials answered negatively, however,  Sassano also stated that DPW had a record of the incident in its possession.  At some point, the Commonwealth expunged this record, but it appears the record survived at least until Sassano made the inquiry.  

Given the above, the Commonwealth bears the burden of proving that Schultz and/or Courtney did not make the report.  That's a tall order because the state can only rely on the testimony of the DPW investigator, Jerry Lauro (who is not a reliable witness) and Carol Smith, a CYS official who has every reason to want to shift the blame for Sandusky on PSU after her agency's miserable performance in 1998.

Report to The Second Mile
It is well documented and insdisputable that PSU made a report of the 2001 incident to The Second Mile.  Bruce Heim, a board member of the charity, stated he considered it a non-incident because he knew that Sandusky showered with children frequently.  Heim told Raykovitz not to report the incident to The Second Mile Board.

The Pennsylvania law on the books at the time of the incident required that PSU officials either make a report or cause an incident to be reported.  Considering that The Second Mile was responsible for the welfare of the child in question in the 2001 incident, and that Sandusky was an employee under contract of The Second Mile, it is beyond dispute that The Second Mile should have reported the incident.

No one, except one person, involved in the reporting of the incident at PSU could be considered a mandated reporter under the law.  A mandated reporter must come in contact with children as part of their professional duties.  Joe Paterno, Graham Spanier, Gary Schultz, and Tim Curley were in positions where they were not required to interact with minors.  The only person in the employment of PSU in 2001 who may have had interactions with children, as part of his job duties, was Mike McQueary.  McQueary had this interaction through his work at youth sports camps.

Complacency
Many have opined that PSU officials may have went soft on Sandusky because of the previous investigation of him in 1998 that resulted in no charges.  I think that is a plausible explanation.  Why pull in the police and the child welfare caseworkers for another investigation of a likely similar incident?  Just tell Sandusky to knock off the showering with kids and have The Second Mile get him some help with this "quirky" behavior.   

And while Second Mile is at it, send Bruce Heim to class with Jerry because Heim didn't think there was anything wrong with Jerry's behavior.

However, few have considered the complacency that was even more likely to have set in at CYS and DPW.

Consider that Sandusky successfully navigated the system's various background checks to become the adoptive father of five sons and a daughter, a foster parent, a host for a half-dozen Fresh Air Fund children from New York City and a congressional honoree as an "Angel in Adoption."

Court records also show Sandusky and his wife, Dottie, were designated to coordinate visits with his grandchildren in 2010 when one son's marriage began to disintegrate.

Pennsylvania laws require that licensed social workers screen prospective families through a number of nets, including FBI checks and child abuse clearances. Prospective parents undergo reference checks, interviews and a medical report that asks a physician to certify that an individual is mentally and physically prepared to be a parent. 

Therefore state (DPW) and county (CYS) officials had been dealing with the Sandusky's for decades prior to the 1998 incident to conduct the screenings for he and Dottie as adoptive and foster parents.  Those agencies had given the "green light" to the Sanduskys on numerous occasions, thus had little reason to suspect anything untoward about Jerry Sandusky.  

Their confidence about the "goodness" of Sandusky was evident in the notes from the 1998 investigation.  The caseworker from CYS, John Miller, despite having knowledge of numerous signs of possible child sexual abuse, possessing a damning psychological report, and being alerted to other possible victims was unsure about pressing forward with the investigation.  He called a meeting at CYS for them to "decide what to do."

As police records reveal, CYS procured John Seasock (at the request of DPW) to conduct a second evaluation of one of the children who were the subjects of the investigation in 1998.   This evaluation was done over  the objections of ADA Karen Arnold and University Park Police Detective Ronald Schreffler.  Seasock's evaluation stated Sandusky was not exhibiting any signs of possible sexual abuse and the 1998 investigation was effectively ended.

Given what transpired in 1998, it is certainly possible that CYS simply decided not to investigate the report of a similar sounding incident that was reported to them in 2001.

If anyone had a reason to be complacent about Jerry Sandusky, it was the child welfare officials who had approved him as an adoptive and foster parent for decades.






Tuesday, January 29

Where are they now? Jerry Lauro, DPW Investigator

One of the individuals who definitely "should have done more" about Jerry Sandusky was Jerry Lauro, the DPW investigator who determined there wasn't enough evidence to "indicate" a finding of abuse.  Where is he now and what is he doing?

By
Ray Blehar

At the outset of the Sandusky Scandal, the public's attention was diverted away from the role of Pennsylvania's child protective services in letting Sandusky roam free for 14 years.  The Department of Public Welfare (DPW) employee at the center of the storm was Jerry Lauro, a Special Program Representative who took the lead on the 1998 investigation.  

Local legend has it that Lauro was brought in because of a conflict of interest between Second Mile and Centre County Children and Youth Services.  That, and that he was assigned to abuse cases involving "high profile" individuals.

After reading what follows, all the "high profile" abusers should sleep well at night.


Lauro and the 1998 Sandusky Investigation

The 1998 University Park Police Report detailed the actions taken by Lauro in the 1998 investigation.


May 5, 1998   1:55PM          J. Lauro, DPW, informed police he was assigned to case.
                                             Lauro stated Sandusky will be interviewed on 7 May.

May 7, 1998  11:00AM        Lauro met with police.        
                                             Lauro rec’d transcribed interviews of V6 & B.K.
                                             Lauro reviewed case file of J. Miller (CYS).

May 7, 1998 11:15AM         Lauro and police went to residence of Victim 6.
                                             Lauro interviewed mother of Victim 6.
                                             Lauro obtained clothing given to Victim 6 by Sandusky.

May 8, 1998 11:55AM        Lauro informed police that DPW was going forward with evaluation 
                                            of V6 (over objections of police and ADA Karen Arnold)

June 1, 1998 11:00AM           Schreffler and Lauro interviewed Sandusky.  Determined no sexual
                                               assault occurred.

Based on the police report, it appears that Lauro did about as little as a caseworker investigating a child abuse case could do.  Lauro claimed he never discussed the details of the case with Detective Schreffler.  Lauro looked at the file, then talked to the mom, then arranged a sham evaluation of the child.   After that, it appears he waited around to be told to do a "pro forma" interview with Sandusky so that DPW could close the case.

Lauro's Side of the Story

In a December 2011 Pittsburgh Post-Gazette article, Lauro stated the incident  "didn't meet the criteria," and "If I really thought there were any child abuse ... I definitely would have indicated it."

It appears that once Lauro learned (from Sara Ganim) the psychology reports were about to become public knowledge the next day (March 23, 2012), he changed his tune and shifted the blame on the PSU police for "hiding" the reports from him.

A March 22, 2012, Patriot News article reported that “Lauro was interviewed by the state grand jury that recently brought 52 child sex abuse charges involving 10 boys against Sandusky, but he said he did not even know psychologists had evaluated the boy then 11, until a reporter who acquired the 100-page report approached Lauro and showed him the reports." 

Later in the same article, Lauro said this about the two psychology reports:  “Detective Schreffler never shared any of these with me,” and about Chambers’ report:  “The conclusions she had drawn in her report were pretty damaging,” Lauro said. “I would have made a different decision. … It’s unbelievable, and it gets my blood pressure going when I think about it.” 

The man who set up the second evaluation never knew the psychologists had interviewed the boy?  And, let's not forget that Dr. Chambers submitted her evaluation to ChildLine in early May.  So, Lauro had access to it as well.

Pulitzer Prize winner,  Sara Ganim reported it just like Lauro told her...
Was it a coincidence that Sara Ganim was interviewing Jerry Lauro about the psychology reports one day before the reports were made public?   And after the reports became public, Sara Ganim never wrote a follow-up to correct the record about what Lauro knew (or as Louis Freeh famously said "should have known").  

The public (and Louis Freeh) went on believing that Lauro never saw Chambers' report.

Lauro Didn't Know The Law Then or Now 


In a July 16, 2012 interview with the Patriot News about the 1998 investigation, Jerry Lauro stated:

"If there was a need to have a safety plan, I would have had one there. I’m really not sure if I did," Lauro said.

Lauro got it wrong on two counts:
1.   A safety plan is required every time -- in accordance with Pa. 055 § 3490.56 (b)
2.  The county agency is responsible for working with the family or, in the 1998 case, the charity to ensure a safety plan is in place.  Under the law, although DPW is running the investigation, all other activities are the responsibility of CYS.

Lauro didn't know his job or the law in 1998 and it appears he still didn't know either in 2012.

Where Is Jerry Lauro Now?


In October, 2006, Jerry retired from the state Department of Public Welfare (DPW) as an Office of Children Youth and Families Regional Supervisor. He had 31 years of service with the department.

During approximately 15 years of his tenure with The Department, Jerry conducted and/or supervised numerous allegations of child abuse. In total, Jerry worked for almost 20 total years in children and youth programs. 

Today, he trains various caseworker/supervisor and foster parent curriculum.  Here are a couple courses he will be teaching this year.


Title:
110: Module 7: The Court Process
Presenter:Jerry Lauro
Participants:Newly hired caseworkers
Date:March 28, 2013
Time:9:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Location:The Pennsylvania Child Welfare Resource Center



Title:
110: Module 1: Introduction to Pennsylvania's
Child Welfare System
Presenter:Jerry Lauro
Participants:Newly hired caseworkers
Date:April 23, 2013
Time:9:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Location:The Pennsylvania Child Welfare Resource Center


If I were a parent in Pennsylvania, I would not be sleeping well knowing who is training new caseworkers about protecting children.


Saturday, January 26

Upon Further Review: King of Prussia

KING OF PRUSSIA, PA - January 25, 2013:  A hearty crowd of 250 Penn State fans, friends, and alumni packed the grand ballroom at the Radison Valley Forge to view the Framing Paterno mini-movie, listen to presentations from Eileen Morgan and Ray Blehar, and interact with a panel featuring John Ziegler, Rob Tribeck, Franco Harris, and Anthony Lubrano.   Franco provided additional insights on the possible role of John Surma in the firing of Joe Paterno.

For those of you who couldn't attend, here are the links to the information:

Mimi-Movie

Eileen Morgan 1998 Presentation and Freeh Report Analysis

Ray Blehar's grand jury presentment presentation

Ray Blehar's Preview of his upcoming report on the NCAA Sanctions

Ray Blehar:  Press Release and Report 1

The Surma Vendetta

The Surma Vendetta Part II

Sandusky Police Investigation

Frank Fitzpatrick, who was supposed to be a media panelist, fled the event rather than having to debate the facts of the case.  More here from Twitter.

https://twitter.com/philafitz/status/295335015825416192

Related Press Coverage
Allentown Morning Call
Yahoo Sports
Sports Then And Now


Thursday, January 24

Press Release: Freeh Report Suffers Another Blow

MUCH-MALIGNED FREEH REPORT SUFFERS ANOTHER BLOW

US Government Analyst Blames Freeh’s Investigation for Keeping Pennsylvania’s Children In Harm’s Way



 JANUARY 23, 2013, WASHINGTON, DC --- For the last six months, the investigation and subsequent report penned by Louis Freeh have come under fire for being light on facts, heavy on supposition and lacking the legal teeth to provide any of the answers about Penn State’s role in the Jerry Sandusky scandal.  A new report released today by U.S. Government analyst Ray Blehar concludes something far worse: the Freeh Report’s analysis of the 1998 investigation of Jerry Sandusky completely missed the fact that Sandusky had full access to children during the investigation and, as trial records indicate, was likely abusing Victim 4 at the time of the investigation.

Blehar’s report exposes that no safety plan was put in place during the 1998 investigation of Sandusky.  Law enforcement records referenced in the report confirm that Sandusky continued to interact with children throughout the investigation.  Sandusky was observed at the baseball practices of two of the children who were the subjects of the investigation, prompting the mother to again summon the police.   The report also notes that no formal safety plan was put in place during the 2008 – 2011 investigation.

The report contends that root cause of the Freeh Report's many flaws was its failure to reference Pennsylvania's Child Protective Services Law (CPSL).

“When the 1998 investigation is evaluated for compliance with the CPSL, it is quite obvious that the state (DPW) and county (CYS) agencies failed on several fronts,” explained Blehar. As a result of the omission, the Freeh Report failed to recommend any type of review of the DPW’s and Centre County CYS’s investigative procedures, which could lead to needed improvements in child protection.

“So, here we sit, more than six months after Freeh’s press conference, with no more safeguards in place to protect the children of Pennsylvania than we had when Sandusky was evaluated 14 years ago,” said Blehar. “Nothing has been done to prevent another predator like Jerry Sandusky from roaming the streets of Pennsylvania."

The report also confirms that Centre County Children and Youth Services (CYS) failed to notify The Second Mile of the 1998 investigation of Jerry Sandusky.  Further, CYS failed to provide a “status determination” to the charity at the close of the investigation.  These notifications, required by law, may have had a profound impact on the charity’s response to the 2001 report of an incident of Sandusky showering with a child on Penn State’s campus.  

By law, the 1998 investigation should have been conducted by DPW officials from the outset, due to Sandusky’s status as an “agent” of the county.  But since it was not, the DPW investigator, Jerry Lauro, did not personally interview any of the alleged victims. As a result, Lauro was only able to read the transcripts of interviews conducted by the police and CYS, denying him first hand knowledge of the emotional states of the children. 

Blehar said the Freeh investigation provided a golden opportunity to illuminate real and serious issues regarding child welfare in the state of Pennsylvania. Instead, he concluded the Freeh Report turned out to be of little diagnostic quality in determining the reforms needed to keep children safe, and stated, “The fact of the matter is really quite simple: this is NOT a Penn State problem; it’s a Pennsylvania state problem.”



Ray Blehar has 27 years of experience as an analyst and investigator. He is currently employed as a senior requirements analyst for the U.S. government in Washington, DC.  Blehar has served on the Board of Examiners for the U.S. Senate Productivity and Maryland Quality Awards program.  In this role, he examined the most important aspects of organizational governance, including legal, ethical and societal  responsibilities, strategic planning, customer relationship management, operations management, human resource management, and business performance.  Blehar holds certifications as a Quality Improvement Associate with the American Society of Quality and as a team facilitator through the Army Management and Engineering College. 
               Blehar's report, the first in a series on the Sandusky Scandal, can be accessed at:



 Note:  I will be presenting this information and other information related to my second report on the Sandusky Scandal (regarding NCAA sanctions) this Friday, January 25th, at the Radison Hotel Valley Forge, in King of Prussia, Pennsylvania from 7PM to 930PM.  Also, I will do a similar presentation on Sunday, January 27th, at the Sunset Room, Washington National Harbor at 1 PM.

Wednesday, January 23

What's Really At Stake In Tom Corbett's NCAA Lawsuit

Tom Corbett cites the economic costs of the NCAA sanctions as the reason for his anti-trust lawsuit and conveniently forgets the greater cost paid every day by the children of Pennsylvania.

By
Ray Blehar

Governor Tom Corbett has created a controversy among Penn State alumni, friends, and fans over the Commonwealth's lawsuit against the NCAA.   While many do not favor the governor politically or personally, they are willing to saddle up with him for what is "the only game in town" for fighting the NCAA.

What could be more unjust than the sanctions levied on Penn State?

THIS:  Since the time that Mike McQueary witnessed that incident in the showers in 2001, over 400 children have been murdered in child abuse incidents in the Commonwealth. The numbers are actually higher because some of the deaths are included in other crime statistics.

The record is atrocious and there's no plan to change things.

The sad reality is that children don't vote.  They don't have money.

Therefore, they are of little use to the governor and he's willing to take a pass on protecting them in an attempt to win favor with the voters of Pennsylvania -- who have both.

A report from the PA Task Force on Child Protection, recommending needed changes to the system sits on the Governor's desk.  It's been there since November 27th.

He's held no press conference to announce the recommendations that he's chosen to implement.

He hasn't invited abused children or the surviving family members of the children who were murdered to his mansion for dinner.

DPW and CYS's Track Record of Failure

In the wake of the Sandusky Scandal, the state government convened a task force to decide what improvements should be made for protecting children.  Don't you love it when legislators react to the latest news du jour, instead of actually being ahead of things and preventing the next crisis?

The task force went about their business holding hearings through the summer and fall about child abuse.  Many people testified.

At one end of the spectrum was Mike Gillum, the psychologist who worked with Aaron Fisher, and helped bring Sandusky to justice.

At the other end was The Honorable Beverly D. Mackereth, Deputy Secretary, Office of Children,Youth, and Families at the Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare.  Most people have no idea who this nameless, faceless bureaucrat is -- but I do.

Ms. Mackereth, as a caseworker in York County in 1982,  was instructed by doctors not to allow little Aleta Bailey, who had been severely beaten by her mother's boyfriend, to be returned to her home and be a subject of future abuse by the boyfriend.  Against the orders,  Mackereth returned the child to the home and within one month, Aleta was beaten to death.

Anyone who has read this blog knows that the DPW and CYS reacted similarly to a recommendation from Dr. Alycia Chambers, who concluded Sandusky was exhibiting grooming behaviors typical of a pedophile.  Like Mackereth, DPW and CYS ignored the Chambers report and stopped investigating Sandusky, letting him roam free to prey on children for 14 years.

If you've followed the news and the Sandusky trial closely, you might know that Clinton County CYS did not require the Second Mile to institute a "safety plan" after Sandusky was "indicated" as a child abuser in 2009.  And if you've really followed things closely, you'd know that Sandusky was likely abusing Victim 9 while the investigation was in its beginning stages.

It is long past time for much needed reforms at CYS and DPW and I think that we, as Penn Staters, should be asking the Governor to put as much emphasis on protecting children as he is on fighting the NCAA.

Are We Who We Say WE ARE?

I never met Joe Paterno, but Joe was and is a great inspiration to me.

I knew about Joe for a long time, growing up in Central Pennsylvania in the 1970's it was hard not to know about him.  But I didn't learn who Joe was until I read Paterno By The Book.  Then I got to understand the depth of Joe Paterno, what he stood for and what he believed in.

There are many quotes of Joe's which are timeless, but at the moment, one quote stands out:

"There's more things in life that are more important than a football game."

I know from reading his books -- and I've read many of them -- and from looking at history, that Joe preached academics and family were ahead of football.   The graduation rates and academic success of Penn State football players was and continues to be magnificent.

It was the Grand Experiment.  Top flight football played by athletes who excelled in the classroom.  What was a small agricultural college, when Joe arrived, transformed into a world class institution.

The time is now that we demand that Governor Corbett takes steps in taking Pennsylvania toward world-class levels of child protection.

This is not an either or decision.  We can do both.

As Joe used to say,

"Let's show them who we are!"



Tuesday, January 22

Shane McGregor's Award Winning Essay on Joe Paterno

by Shane McGregor
Jim Murray Memorial Scholarship Essay
He stands with a slight hunch, a crease in his back where his blue jacket and khaki pants meet. In one hand a whistle, its thread snaking through his tanned fingers; in the other, a folded practice schedule. He watches as ten young men sixty years his junior huddle together in the middle of Holuba Hall, the expansive indoor practice facility at Penn State University.
It's the tenth practice of the 2011 spring football season, and the lingering central Pennsylvania winter has forced the Nittany Lions inside this Saturday morning. A red-jerseyed quarterback reaches the huddle and begins calling the play when the man with the whistle turns to his offensive coordinator and gives an order.
"I want the Iso."
"Alright, we have the play-action called, we'll call it next play," the coordinator replies.
"No, run it now. I want the Iso. Run it now."
The huddle is interrupted. The new play call, the isolation running play Joe Paterno just demanded, is signaled into the quarterback. And six seconds after the snap of the ball, running back Curtis Dukes is sprinting into the end zone forty yards away.
Touchdown.
"The funny thing is, Joe does that all the time," says the offensive coordinator, Jay Paterno. "He just has a great feel for anticipating things, a great sense of vision."
At the age of 84, Joe Paterno has displayed a few other things as he prepares for his 46th season as a head coach and his 62nd at Penn State. Since he became head coach of the Nittany Lions in 1966, Paterno's teams have amassed 401 victories, national championships in 1982 and 1986, seven undefeated seasons, 78 All-Americans, 36 bowl appearances, 24 bowl victories, 47 Academic All-Americans and 18 NCAA postgraduate scholarship winners.
But the numbers fail to do justice to Paterno's greatest strength, his character. Just ask anyone who has ever interacted with him.
"I was sold on him from the first time he came to my house on a recruiting visit," says Daryll Clark, a quarterback from Youngstown, Ohio who became an All-Big Ten player in 2008 and 2009. "For the first thirty minutes we talked about school, Youngstown, my family, his family. No one else did that, and as far as I know, no one else does."
Most other coaches haven't graduated with a degree in English from Brown University.
Most don't go home after a long day's work and pick up Abraham Lincoln's autobiography or Bob Woodward's Obama's Wars, books Paterno read during spring practice. And when faced with the darkest of times -- a 2004 loss to Northwestern that dropped the Lions to 0-6 in the Big Ten -- most coaches wouldn't turn to William Shakespeare for advice.
"Joe cancelled practice that Monday and read Hamlet's 'To be or not to be' speech to the team," says Jay Paterno. "He told the seniors, 'You guys can't win a national championship, but we have two more games and you guys can sow the seeds for us to win it next year.'"
The Lions used a late goal-line stand to win at Indiana and an offensive explosion to beat Michigan State in those final two games. The 2005 Nittany Lions built a record of 11-1, their only defeat coming in a last-second loss at Michigan, and completed their comeback season with a triple-overtime Orange Bowl victory over Florida State.
Paterno's influence has extended beyond the football field and into the culture of his university since the vision known as "The Grand Experiment," competing on a national level without academic compromise, began 45 years ago. There are no last names on the uniforms of his team or any varsity Penn State athletic team. One of two libraries on the University Park campus is named the "Paterno Library," after he and his wife, Sue, made a $3.5 million gift in 1998. A family gift supported the creation of an interfaith spiritual center. At the university's popular Creamery, where long lines are a tradition of each football weekend, one of the most popular ice cream flavors is Peachy Paterno.
And Penn State has never had an NCAA violation in any sport.
Winning is valued, but winning with integrity is held in highest regard.
"We place a great importance on trust," Paterno says. "I've only ever had to fire two coaches in my whole time here, and both times were for cheating. We want to do things the right way."
Of all the qualities that he could name -- endurance, persistence, loyalty, courage, attention to detail, competitive nature -- Paterno attributes his success to one factor.
"We've always had great people," he says. "The one thing we've always had on the staff and on the team and around here were great people."
In the early evening of November 6, 2010, nearly everyone in the crowd of 104,147 remained in Beaver Stadium as Joe Paterno walked toward a makeshift stage in the south end zone. A come-from-behind, 35-21 victory over Northwestern had made Paterno the first major college coach to reach 400 victories. As the thousands chanted his name, Paterno held a microphone and stared out into a sea of flashing cameras and smiling fans. With his wife, his children, his grandchildren, his coaches, his former players and his current Lions surrounding the small stage, he was presented with a crystal football to commemorate the victory.
Then he answered a question he had heard too many times.
"People want to ask why I stayed here so long, and you know what?
"Look around. Look around.

Joe's Speech to the Board of Trustees, 1983

Joe Paterno's Speech to the BOT following his first National Championship

Delivered January 22, 1983 (29 years, to the day, before he passed away)

“I very much appreciate those words. You know this is the first Board meeting I have ever been to in 33 years so if I look a little shocked and scared, bear with me, I really do appreciate this. I would hope maybe on this occasion since I’ve never addressed a Board meeting, to maybe share some thoughts with you as to where we are and what I hope we can get done here at the University. It pleases me, obviously, to happen to be part of the Number One football team. I am pleased also that it happened at this time in Dr. Oswald’s career that he could leave feeling that he finally got it done. Having been a former coach, he knows how tough it is to get on top of the pile and everything else. It pleases me in a lot of ways. But after having said that, and I’m going to be very frank with you, and I may say some things here that maybe I should not, but it does give me an opportunity to tell you how I feel and what I want to do and what kind of contributions I’d like to make to this institution as I stay on. You know, obviously, all of us are disappointed in the newspaper reports that some of our academic departments are not rated very high. That bothers me. It bothers me to see Penn State football be Number One and then to pick up a newspaper several weeks later and we find we don’t have many of our disciplines rated up there with the other institutions in the country. I want to share just a couple of things with you and I hope you’ll understand where I’m coming from.

“I think this is a magic time for Penn State. Dr. Oswald has said this, and I have felt it, and I think he is probably more attuned to it than anybody. There has never been a time when Penn State has been more united or proud. Now maybe it’s unfortunate that it takes a Number One football team to do that. I don’t think we can lose the opportunities that this moment presents to us, and I don’t mean in athletics. I’m not even concerned about the athletic aspects of where we are, I think we can handle that and make sure that we can maintain the kind of teams that you people like to see and you can be proud of and identify with the type of students and the type of football players we get. But I think we have got somehow to start right now. I think Dr. Oswald came to us at a time that we absolutely had to retrench in some areas and he has done a magnificent job for us. I for one want to thank him for what he has done for intercollegiate athletics. We would not be Number One in athletics if it had not been for his cooperation. Every time I ever went to him he never said no to me. I’d like to be on record as having said that. Maybe once in a while there has been somebody in between us that has not presented my case accurately, but anytime I have had an opportunity to sit with him and discuss some things that we needed, he’s never said no to me. I don’t think we’d be where we are if it hadn’t happened that way. But I go back to a fact that we are in a national situation that I have never felt as I have felt now.

“I have been all over the country in the last few weeks. I have been in Florida, been in California, I’ve been in airports in Chicago and Atlanta, you name it, and I’ve been there recruiting and doing some other things trying to capitalize on the position that you have when you’ve had success and trying to make some corrections in what we have and the abuses of the intercollegiate program. Some of the thoughts that I have expressed--and I don’t mean to make this a testimonial of Dr. Oswald--but he was one of the people that came up with the ideas that we had to raise the level for scholarship. He was one of the Council of the American Council of Education, one of the select committee, that came up with the standards that we proposed out on the Coast and I’ve gotten a lot of publicity for having made some speeches out there, but it was Dr. Oswald and some other college Presidents who got together and proposed those standards. But everywhere I’ve gone I’ve heard nothing but, ‘boy, Penn State, Penn State, what a great bunch of people, what a great institution,’ and all of those things.

“So we do have a magic moment and we have a great opportunity, and I think we have got to start right now to put our energies together to make Penn State not only Number One, but I think we’ve got to start to put our energies together to make this a Number One institution by 1990. I don’t think that’s an unfounded or a way-out objective. I think we need some things. I talk to you now as a faculty member. I talk to you as somebody who has spent 33 years at Penn State, who has two daughters at Penn State, who probably will have three sons at Penn State, who has a wife that graduated from Penn State, who has two brother-in-laws that graduated from Penn State, and I talk to you as somebody I think who knows a little bit about what’s going on. Who has recruited against Michigan, Stanford, UCLA, who has recruited against Notre Dame, Princeton, Yale, and Harvard and who has had to identify some things that they have that are better than we have and has had to identify some of our problems. I talk to you as somebody that I think knows a little bit about what’s going on in the other guys, and I think a little bit about what’s going on here. We need chairs. We need money so that we can get some stars. We need scholarship money. We need scholarship money to get scholars who can be with the stars so that the stars will come in and have some people around that can stimulate them and they can be stimulated by the stars. We need a better library--better libraries would be a better way to put it--so that the stars and the scholars have the tools to realize their potential. We need an environment of dissent and freedom of speech and freedom to express new and controversial ideas. Basically, this Board is in a lot of ways reactionary because you are more conservative than anything else. That is not a criticism of you as individuals, but I think that’s a fair criticism of The Pennsylvania State University Board of Trustees for the 33 years that I have known them going back to Jim Milholland who was acting Chairman and President when I first came. We need more controversy, we need more freedom, we need more people to come to us with different ideas, we need more minorities. I am constantly fighting the battle, ‘we don’t have enough blacks; we don’t have enough minorities’ everywhere I go, and I don’t have the answers to it, but I’m giving you some impressions. We can’t be afraid, too reactionary to new and disturbing ideas; however, we can’t do some of the things all at once. I think that Dr. Oswald and the new President and Ted Eddy, our Provost, have got to sit down--I’m probably not speaking in turn, I’m probably way out of whack, I’m probably on a page that I probably shouldn’t be on but I feel so strongly about it I want to say it--to sit down and put down some priorities. We have some excellent departments. And I know because when I get out in the field we have some excellent departments that can be absolutely outstanding in a relatively short time. We also have some departments that are absolutely lousy and we have lazy profs who are only concerned with tenure and only concerned with getting tenure for some of their mediocre colleagues.

“Alright, now I’m telling you how I feel about it and I may be all wet. But I’ve dealt with all of them, and a lot of these latter groups. Some of these people in the latter group would make Happy Valley Sleepy Hollow if we let them. It’s certainly not invigorating. We’ve got a new President and I think that he and Dr. Oswald need to sit down and have to probably make some tough decisions.

“Pirandello, the brilliant Italian playwright--I suppose brilliant and Italian is redundant--wrote a play ‘Six Characters in Search of an Author’, in which the characters of an unfinished play come to life and then they try to finish the play. Well, I believe that Penn State has not necessarily all of a sudden come to life. That would be an unfair criticism of all of the great things that have been done here in the 33 years that I have been here. But I think it’s more alive today than at any time in 33 years that I’ve been here. I think it’s well organized, and I think it’s got thrust and wants to pursue. It’s alive but it’s looking. I think we are not looking for bricks and mortar--and most of you people are businessmen--and we are not looking for GSA money. I think we are looking for the soul of this institution. The soul may be an overstatement, but I’m not sure I’m overstating the case. I think we’re literally looking for a soul. Who we are, what we are, and I think that basically comes down to soul. We need to find our soul. We need vibrant, aggressive, brilliant teachers and scholars. We have some, but we don’t have enough of them and that’s why we need chairs. We need to give them the resources to grow and the freedom to challenge some of the old ideas and old conceptions that have made this country backward in a lot of ways, and have made this state the one with the highest unemployment of any state in the northeast part of the country.

“I’m a football coach. I sit down with my staff and I look at our schedule and our squad and we say this is what we want to do and this is what we can do. And then we set priorities and make decisions as to how we can achieve our objectives. We put a plan together and we stick with it. We don’t jump from one plan to the other and we bust our butt to get it done. And that’s what has to be done with Penn State in the ‘80s. We can’t wait. It would be nice to say we can wait and in three years put together a major fund-raising campaign. We can’t wait. I am only telling you that as somebody who’s in the field. We can only hold up our finger as Number One for six more months and then we have to play the game again and we may not be Number One. Six short months to capture this magic moment. We have got to raise $7 to $10 million bucks as far as I’m concerned in the next six months or we are going to lose some things and an opportunity we have. How do you go about raising $7 to $10 million is somebody else’s concern. I’m willing to help in any way I can. We need $7 to $10 million in the next six months to get us the impetus that we need because we don’t want to lose it. I think we’ve got to take this magic moment and stick it in a jar and we’ve got to preserve it until we open it up in 1990.

“Dr. Eddy, the other day at an alumni meeting down at Pittsburgh where we had over a thousand people in Allegheny County. Stan was there and some of the others were there and the next night we went to Westmoreland County where we had over 580 people and they turned away 300 people. There is a great group out there right now wanting to get involved in it. Dr. Eddy said it the other night better than I can. He said, and he almost sounded like a football coach, we have a great chance and challenge to make our University Number One in many areas and in coming together to do it we may find out we will have as much fun doing it as we had fun doing it in New Orleans. It was a very moving speech and it hit home. I have had a lot of people come to me wanting to know how they can help. I said to you I have given 33 years, two daughters, and probably three sons to Penn State. I am ready to help where I can to make “Number One” mean more than when we stick that finger up it’s only football. We are losing a great President; we’re starting a new era. As Jim Tarman said the other night, we are fortunate that where we are that we’ve been able to get there our way. We’ve not cheated, I mean not deliberately, you never know with that thick rule book. We’ve done it with people who legitimately belong in college. We’ve set a standard in one area that I think created a challenge for us to reach in all of our areas. You are the people who are going to have to help us do it. There are a lot of us that want to get on with it.

“So, thank you very much for this wonderful resolution. I’m moved. I think you know how much I love this institution and how much I appreciate what it has meant to me and my family for 33 glorious years. 33 years of a great love affair that I have had with this place in this town. I have no regrets. I’m only anxious to get on with some other things to make it even bigger and better, not in a sense of size, but in the context of quality and influence in this country and in some of the things that I think it’s important for a major institution of this size to do. So, thank you very much. I hope I didn’t bore you with it too long.”


 

WE ARE BECAUSE YOU WERE - RIP JOE - 409





Monday, January 21

Eileen Morgan: Spanier Didn't Know About 1998

Spanier's Calendar Reveals That He Likely Missed The Concluding E-Mail In The 1998 Investigation.  Freeh Suppressed The Exonerating Information From His Report.

by
Eileen Morgan

If you recall, Graham Spanier denied knowing or remembering any investigation regarding Sandusky showering with a boy in 1998. The evidence that Freeh uses to ‘prove’ that Spanier knew of 1998 were two vague emails that Spanier was cc’d on.  

The first was Exhibit 2A of the Freeh Report, which states: 

“Will do.  Since we talked tonight I’ve learned that the Public Welfare people will interview the individual Thursday.”    

There was no mention of an investigation or that a university employee was in trouble.  In fact it doesn’t even mention a name (aside from the subject line, Joe Paterno).  

The second email sent June 9, 1998, again only copied (cc’d) to Spanier, is shown in Exhibit 2E of the Freeh report.  This email mentions Jerry’s name and that the investigation was over.  

Subject:  Re: Jerry

They met with Jerry on Monday and concluded that there was no criminal behavior and the matter was closed as an investigation.  He was a little emotional and expressed concern as to how this might have adversely affected the child.  I think the matter has been appropriately investigated and it is now behind us.

Even so, Spanier claims he had no knowledge of these emails.  Freeh contends he had full knowledge and provided the evidence to the Attorney General, resulting in Spanier being charged with conspiracy and child endangerment.


Spanier's Calendar Indicates Otherwise

What’s interesting to know is that Spanier was on an international trip to the UK from June 8, 1998 to June 19, 1998.  This was before the days of blackberrys and internet cafes.  Spanier had no access to email while away.  When he returned he would have had over one thousand emails waiting for him in his inbox.  

It is very likely that an email with no urgency and one that he was only copied on would have not caught his attention or made a lasting impression.  HOWEVER, what’s even more interesting, and this has been confirmed, is that Spanier had a calendar book and was meticulous about keeping dates and times of meetings, lunches, business trips, etc.  

The AG and Freeh had copies of Spanier’s calendar and knew that Spanier was away when that email was sent to him.  They knew it was likely he would not have seen it or remembered it among the thousand or so emails awaiting his return.   Additionally, PSU was engaged in retirement talks with Sandusky before and after the May 1998 incident.  It is quite possible that Spanier read the "top" or latest Sandusky update that may have dealt with retirement and simply deleted the older e-mail referencing the investigation. 

That’s one little piece of evidence Freeh failed to disclose.  

What other pieces of evidence have they failed to disclose because it doesn’t fit their narrative that the PSU officials are guilty of a cover up?

Full Report At Eileen's Page

Up Is Down, Down Is Up, and Durham Is Not The Only Wonderland

Blogger KC Johnson Believes The Penn State Case Is Unlike Duke Because Many Penn Staters Refuse to Accept the Freeh Report and Move Forward

By
Ray Blehar

KC Johnson, owner of the blog, Durham In Wonderland, is critical of Penn Staters who refuse to accept the Freeh Report and move forward.

While I respect his work on the Duke case, KC doesn't have his facts straight when it comes to the Penn State scandal.  I left a comment (more like a challenge having to do with him eating a certain bird) on his blog in the hopes he would reach out to me and that we could have a discussion about the similarities between Penn State and Duke -- which I pointed out on this blog.

I'll let KC's own words explain his misunderstanding:

"An example comes in this blog post, which compares the Duke students—falsely accused of a crime that never occurred, victims of massive prosecutorial misconduct—to Penn State senior administrators and ex-coaches who decided, for their own reasons, not to report a graduate assistant’s report that he had witnessed a boy being sexually assaulted in the football showers."

Where KC's analysis goes off the rails is his failure to understand that the "crimes" at Penn State that never occurred were the failure to report the incident and the alleged cover-up.  These are yet to be proven charges and the evidence is practically non-existent to make these charges hold up.  However, KC is willing to rush to judgment in the Penn State case, without the legal process running its due course.

I find the irony to be overwhelming.

It appears that KC believes that Durham, North Carolina, is the only town in these United States where a prosecutor would withhold exculpatory evidence.  It also appears that KC believes that unlike Crystal Mangum (the accuser in the Duke case), Mike McQueary was telling the truth about what he told PSU officials.  Yesterday's blog seems to point to the opposite and exposes that the testimony of John and Mike McQueary is beyond preposterous.

Up Is Down, Down Is Up

I have documented the many fallacies, if not impossibilities, in this case and have done so using laws and evidence.  Perhaps if KC would have spend some time reading this blog, he would have learned these facts about the Sandusky Scandal:

1. Child abuse investigators had sufficient evidence to pursue a full investigation in 1998 and failed to do so.
2. DPW decided to "resolve" the 1998 case nine days after the incident was reported.
3. Under the law, PSU officials, less Schultz, were prohibited from knowing the details of the 1998 case.
4. The e-mail evidence disproves that PSU officials were kept informed of the 1998 investigation.
5. The 2000 incident of abuse observed by a janitor is not supported by the evidence.
6. Louis Freeh did not conclude PSU violated the child abuse reporting statute in 2001.
7. PSU officials did not enable, and in fact, temporarily halted Sandusky's crime spree.
8. The police and OAG detectives did not identify as single victim during their three year investigation.

and finally, and perhaps most importantly,

9. Freeh's investigation was biased by the Attorney General's mandate not to interfere with the ongoing prosecution of Sandusky and the conspiracy investigation of Curley, Schultz, and Spanier.

Clearly, KC Johnson, at the moment,  is no better than those who rushed to judgment, without the facts, in the Duke case.  It is interesting to note, however, that he realizes the hype and media sensation around the Steubenville case, yet does not consider that the same hype surrounds the Penn State case.

KC Johnson's "Challenge"

After PS4RS and others released rebuttals of the Freeh Report, KC weighed in with this:

"Over the past several weeks, high-profile criticisms of the Freeh Report, which examined the Penn State administration's failed response to a report of inappropriate sexual behavior by former defensive coordinator Jerry Sandusky, generated more heat than light. Nearly identical missives from a handful of renegade PSU trustees, the family of ex-coach Joe Paterno, and a handful of former Penn State football players all slammed the Freeh Report as biased and filled with factual errors--but were unable to identify even one specific way in which the report was biased, or point out even one factual error that made the critics' case."

First, I disagree that the analyses, and specifically the PS4RS report, did not show the Freeh Report was biased.  The PS4RS report clearly showed the conflicts of interest in the Freeh investigation and that the report was biased because the individuals closest to the case, who could provide exculpatory evidence, were not interviewed.

But, I digress.

I'll answer KC's challenge that there are no factual errors in the Freeh Report.  I easily found 20 errors and omissons in the Freeh Report that negate almost every meaningful finding not only in the report, but in Freeh's press conference remarks.

I will make the complete list public on Friday, at Franco's Town Hall in King of Prussia, PA.  But for now, here are four obvious errors in the Freeh Report that are indisputable and documented in the trial verdicts and transcripts.


1.  Incorrectly recounted the trial testimony regarding the Fall 2000/Victim 8 incident.  The Freeh Report stated the incident occurred in the Assistant Coaches Locker Room, that there was an obstruction blocking the janitors view, and that multiple janitors testified at trial.  The transcript states the crime occurred in the Staff Locker Room, there were no obstructions blocking the view, and that only one janitor testified.

2.  Incorrectly stated that Victim 6 was assaulted.  Sandusky was acquitted of indecent assault.

3.  Incorrectly stated that Victim 7 was assaulted.  Sandusky was not charged with assault in that case.

4.   Incorrectly stated that Victim 5 was assaulted.  Sandusky was acquitted of indecent assault.


Concluding Remarks

I have no ill will for KC Johnson.  In fact, I believe KC Johnson is an intelligent individual and once he familiarizes himself with the facts of the Penn State case, he could become an advocate for the cause of finding the truth.