Saturday, February 1

Sandusky scandal marked by deception, suppression, and manipulation (Part I)

In order to make the case against Sandusky and PSU football (but no one else), the Commonwealth and others suppressed and manipulated evidence

By
Ray Blehar


If things had gone according to the original plan in the Sandusky investigation, Jerry would be a free man, The Second Mile charity would be thriving, Joe Paterno would have retired as the winningest coach in Division I football, and life would have went on as it always did in Happy Valley.

Ironically, it was not Jerry Sandusky that changed life in Happy Valley as we know it, but rather, it was Governor Tom Corbett, whose political vendetta against Graham Spanier set everything in motion. 

The trail of evidence in this case will demonstrate how the actions of Corbett, Freeh, Erickson, the Patriot News, and others turned what should have been The Second Mile(TSM)/Department of Public Welfare (DPW)  scandal into what became known as the Penn State sex abuse scandal.   The evidence also indicates that activities occurring at PSU, TSM, and other places were not just a matter of coincidence.

By sensationalizing the 2001 incident at PSU, Corbett and his allies diverted the attention away from the people who enabled Sandusky’s access to children- DPW and The Second Mile - during his decades long period of abuse and shifted the blame on PSU's "football culture."

Each person or group was motivated by self-interest, which revolved around  just two things - money and power.

Initial Investigation -- December 2008 to October 2010

Sara Ganim, who won a Pulitzer Prize for local reporting, erroneously reported that the Sandusky investigation lagged because only one investigator was assigned to the case.  The truth was that two state policemen were initially assigned to the case, who were then replaced by one state trooper, and then another.  Essentially, a game of "musical investigators" was played early on – until the case ended up on then-Attorney General Tom Corbett’s desk.  Once there, a second investigator, narcotics agent Anthony Sassano was assigned to assist Trooper Scott Rossman to work the case.  The investigation was led by regional director Randy Feathers, who stated he made every resource decision in the case and that he didn’t want a whole lot of investigators on this case.  He remarked, "You want to keep it as small as possible." 

One of the key questions about the Sandusky case was why the child predator unit was not used.  Additionally, why were narcotics agents and state troopers investigating a child sex abuse investigation?   Feathers stated there was a shortage of manpower due to the "bonus-gate" investigation, however I suspect that answer is just part of the ruse.  History showed the investigation lagged even after eight additional troopers and four agents were added.


According to information on the public record, the troopers and agents assigned to the case could not find any other victims to corroborate the allegations of Aaron Fisher, the original complainant/victim in the case until November 2010.  

Fisher’s book, Silent No More, reported that the police relied exclusively on Fisher to identify possible victims and the only records subpoenaed in the early investigation were employment records starting with the letter “S” from The Second Mile (TSM). 

Amazingly, those records were said to be missing.  

The police did not obtain warrants or subpoenas for TSM participant records to find names of potential victims, nor did they obtain a warrant to search Sandusky’s home and office until two years into the investigation.  One certainly has to question the procedures and the thoroughness of the initial investigation.   As the investigation approached two years in duration – and even with a grand jury enpaneled, the case was going nowhere – right according to plan.

Meanwhile at PSU, the Board of Trustees decided to end their over half century relationship with the legal firm McQuaide-Blasko and hire their own in-house counsel.  It was no coincidence that the move to make that happen occurred in Spring 2009 - right after the Sandusky investigation hit Corbett's desk.  Cynthia Baldwin was hired and in place by February 2010 -- in plenty of time to ensure that nothing from the Sandusky case would roll onto the PSU BOT.

Changes were occurring at TSM, as well.  Sandusky resigned from TSM in the fall of 2009, but he continued to stay involved in fundraising and public events involving children.  The TSM board decided to keep Sandusky's abuse finding from the public.  

The charity established a new state level board in 2009.   A review of the state level board revealed that most individuals on the board were experts at development/fund raising or were in real estate development/construction. Only two people appeared to be child advocates or community volunteers.

In the restructuring, TSM added a few new heavy hitters - including former PSU football All-American, ESPN analyst, Matt Millen,  Senator Jake Corman and the Deloitte executive soon to be Buffalo Sabres chief development officer, Cliff Benson.       It appeared the TSM charity was ready for life after Sandusky and was going to use Millen, Corman, and Benson as their new front men for fundraising.  

In September 2010, Sandusky publicly announced his retirement from the charity.

October 2010 - Corbett's Not So Invisible Hand

Governor Tom Corbett
In October of 2010 Corbett, who became furious after seeing Spanier talking with his gubernatorial opponent Dan Onorato, was overheard by a number of people at a Penn State football game promising that he would eventually get Spanier fired.  Years later, at the January 2013 meeting between Corbett and the former PSU football players, Corbett admitted that his comment, "remember that little boy in the shower" was directed toward the vote on the firing of Spanier.   

Corbett’s anger toward Spanier caused him to consider using the Sandusky probe as a means of taking out his opponent.  Documents obtained in the course of this investigation indicate that Corbett’s Office of Attorney General (OAG) requested Spanier's e-mails on or about October 2010.   

Around the same time, Jan Murphy of the Patriot News sent an e-mail to Graham Spanier to ask about his knowledge of an investigation into former assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky.  Spanier replied that he had no knowledge of the investigation, sending blind courtesy copies to PSU's PR employees Bill Mahon and Lisa Powers.  Powers was told PSU didn't know anything about the investigation, although a McQuaide-Blasko lawyer received and discussed a January 2010 subpoena for Sandusky's employment records with newly hired counsel Baldwin. 

At that point, it appeared that Baldwin was keeping PSU's leaders in the dark about the ongoing investigation of Sandusky – and Corbett's AG office appeared to be leaking information to the press corps.  

November 2010 - McQueary Interviewed

Corbett appeared to wait until after his election to play his next card, which was to release the information related to the 2001 incident witnessed by McQueary to the OAG investigators. I suspect the McQueary incident was known well before the anonymous e-mail tip found its way to Centre County DA, Stacy Parks Miller.  Interestingly, this e-mail has never been introduced as evidence nor has its exact contents ever been discussed at a judicial proceeding.  McQueary's interview in November 2010 and subsequent grand jury testimony in December didn't implicate Spanier, however it provided cause to call Curley and Schultz to the grand jury.

Before that could happen, more evidence (that was to supposed to have remained hidden)  leaked out.

Evidence Suppression - The 1998 Investigation
Jonelle Eshbach
As the book Silent No More revealed, Deputy Attorney General Jonelle Eshbach informed Mike Gillum that the OAG had knowledge of the 1998 incident in June 2009, thus it was some 17 months before investigators found out (via Sara Ganim) about the 1998 case. This is probably one of the more important facts of the case because it backs the theory that Corbett was purposely foot-dragging the investigation.

It is probable that the leaker was not Corbett or one of his associates, but someone else in the OAG who had enough of the foot dragging and wanted Sandusky arrested. I suspect that if not for the leaker, the 1998 investigation may have remained hidden from the public because it revealed the Commonwealth could have taken Sandusky off the streets a decade earlier.  As you will later see, the OAG tried to cover up this fact in the grand jury presentment as well.

It appears the 1998 information was leaked to Sara Ganim, who contacted the mother of the eventual Victim 6.  Ganim, according to a stipulation at the Sandusky trial, had provided the contact information of one of the Sandusky case investigators to the mother sometime in November or December 2010.  The mother contacted the investigator to inform him about her son's incident in 1998 and, by using the book Touched, identified other victims.

 According to the mother, the OAG didn't want to press charges in her son's case. She stated:

“The state cop fought for them,” she said. “I heard it got heated, but he stood his ground because he said my son was the cornerstone of the whole case and how they got the other football boys.”


It is highly probable that the mother told the cops and Ganim about her son's police interview at PSU, leading the Pennsylvania State Police (PSP) to obtain the 1998 University Park Police report of the Sandusky investigation.

However, the mother said something else that indicates evidence suppression may have occurred in the earliest days of the case:

“At one point police told me they’ve had less evidence in murder cases,” she said. “I kept being told, March, April, June, October. ... The AG kept asking for more evidence. The police told me they had enough for 400 counts, but the AG wanted only 40. This whole thing just stinks so much more than we all know.”

At the time the police interviewed the mother, the "official" record on the investigation alleged that there were only two victims in the case - Fisher and the purportedly unknown Victim 2.  If there were enough for 400 counts, and we know there were only five counts in the Victim 2 case, from where and from whom did the police come up with enough incidents for 400 counts? 


The best answer would be from the early investigation at CMHS and other individuals identified by Aaron Fisher.


What Really Happened At Central Mountain?

Dawn Daniels and Aaron Fisher
Most of the public first learned of Central Mountain High School (CMHS) when the Sandusky grand jury presentment and press releases lauded the school employees for their quick action in reporting Sandusky to the authorities.  However, in the weeks after the scandal broke, various news outlets reported that CMHS officials had tried to talk Dawn Daniels (the mother of Aaron Fisher) out of reporting Sandusky.  And almost two years after the scandal, it was found that CMHS principal Karen Probst attempted to undermine Daniel's report to Clinton County CYS.

Obviously, the OAG's presentment didn't tell the truth about what happened at CMHS.  There were numerous questionable incidents by Sandusky that went unreported by school officials, and its possible that the OAG was suppressing more than just those incidents.

Given Sandusky's penchant for being around groups of boys - and that offenders like Sandusky often utilize peer pressure among victims to keep from being discovered - it is highly likely that there were other victims at Central Mountain High School and Middle School.  

The grand jury presentment made mention of another boy, F.A., who was investigated and who claimed that Sandusky would put his hand on his knee and engage in behaviors that made him uncomfortable. The Commonwealth did not press charges in F.A.'s case but did so in the case of Victim 7, who alleged the same things as F.A.  Perhaps the OAG's reasoning not to charge in F.A's case was to make it appear that the "prompt response" of CMHS spared other children from abuse.  And obviously, not having additional victims at CMHS would keep the public's attention and outrage focused on PSU.

An April 2012 motion by defense counsel Joe Amendola requested information on Victims 11-17, then amended the request to include victims 18 through an unknown number.  It is entirely possible that some of these victims were found early in the investigation at CMHS.   In February 2013, former Deputy Attorney General Jonelle Eshbach asked "There are other victims, will there be more charges?"  Again, who were these victims and when were they found?

Finally, one of the other big questions in the Fisher investigation is why did two state troopers (Akers and Cavanaugh) get assigned to the case, rather than the sex crimes investigator Patterson.  After a short time, Akers and Cavanaugh were replaced by trooper Lear.  Then the case moved to Corbett's office and Lear was replaced by Rossman.  The OAG then added narcotics agent Sassano to the mix.

Again, why wasn't the child predator unit on the case, or at least a trained child sex abuse investigator?  This is part of the reason why we really don't know what happened at CMHS or in the Sandusky case, overall.


January 2011 - Corbett Sworn In, Investigation Lags

One of the many myths of the case (propagated by Sara Ganim and others) was that the Sandusky investigation picked up steam in January 2011, after more investigators were assigned to the case by PSP Commissioner Frank Noonan.

While Curley, Schultz, and Paterno were hauled in front of the grand jury that month, the prosecutors came away with nothing more than they already had from McQueary -- an unknown victim and a highly uncertain account of events.  The grand jury testimony and police interviews of these men also disproved the notion of any conspiracy or cover-up because none of the men agreed on even the year the McQueary incident took place or on what happened.  If there was a conspiracy or cover-up, wouldn't these individuals have taken the time to get their stories straight?


As my Report 3 timeline shows, the investigation kept dragging along with Victim 6 interviewed in January, Victim 7 interviewed in February, and then no other victims interviewed until April 2011 -- despite the fact that the mother of Victim 6 and her daughter had provided the police with information leading to five other victims.  Three of the five individuals (Victims 3, 4, and 5)  had traffic or criminal dockets in the system at the time the police got those leads, thus it is hard to explain how the police did not track these men down sooner.

Additionally, the police finally subpoenaed the participant records from TSM in January but there is nothing on the public record indicating those records led to the identification of a single victim.  These facts obviously indicate foot-dragging after Corbett was in office, thus the theory that the election caused the slow-walk appears to be negated.  Instead, the evidence indicates the Commonwealth was reluctant to pursue charges in the Sandusky case - until the March 2011 budget battle.


March 2011 - Budget Battle Strengthens Corbett's Resolve

As the OAG was sitting on a weak hand and with the investigation going nowhere, Governor Corbett announced his 2012 budget in March 2011 -- and with it massive cuts to the Penn State and education budget as a whole.  Graham Spanier fired back at Corbett with his now famous line "Abraham Lincoln is weeping" in reference to the Morrill Act that established land grant universities.  As the battle raged in the press, there was a precipitous drop in the approval polls for the newly elected governor.

Corbett redoubled his effort to get rid of Spanier by having the OAG prosecutors turn up the heat on Cynthia Baldwin to deliver the e-mail evidence in the case (subpoenaed in late 2010) and to get Spanier in front of the grand jury.   Baldwin worked out the March 22nd date for Spanier's interview with the OAG in State College.  Baldwin received the subpoena for Spanier to appear before the grand jury two days after the interview.

Just days later, on March 28th, Sara Ganim e-mailed Tim Curley to inquire about his knowledge of the Sandusky investigation.  Curley referred the matter to the PR staff, who told Ganim they were not aware of an investigation.  Powers subsequently asked  Baldwin about the investigation, to which the attorney replied it was a "fishing expedition."

On March 31st, the Patriot News released a series of articles about the Sandusky investigation.  The first reported that Sandusky was the subject of a grand jury investigation and the second, somewhat suspiciously, was the back story on the story. It stated Sara Ganim had been on the story since 2009 and that the AG's office "declined to speak" with them.  Why did the Patriot News feel the need to make those statements?  

The lady doth protest too much, methinks.

Over the next two weeks, a dozen more articles would be published about PSU and the Sandusky matter.  I dare say that there was little chance all of these articles and op-eds, including at least two from TSM Executive Director, Dr. Jack Raykovitz, escaped the eyes of the PSU BOT -- and particularly former TSM board member, Ira Lubert.  


April 2011 - Spanier Grand Jury and E-mail Evidence

Graham Spanier
During his grand jury appearance, Spanier denied any knowledge of the 1998 incident, but stated he recalled discussing the 2001 incident with Curley and Schultz.  The first part of his appearance went smoothly but in  the second half, prosecutors took on an accusatory tone.  Spanier stated he was "stunned" when prosecutors began using the term sodomy in connection with the 2001 incident and believed that they may have done it just "to get a rise out of me."  Spanier remained solid on the 2001 incident being described to him as "horseplay" and, as a result, the prosecutors came away with very little to implicate Spanier in any wrong doing.

Frank Fina spent considerable time in the Spanier colloquy making an argument for PSU to release all e-mail evidence prior to 1997.  Fina made no mention of any e-mails more recent than 1997 and his references to coded language revealed it was highly probable that the Commonwealth had already received the 1998 and 2001 emails which had those characteristics.   It is also highly probable the original e-mails were also more benign than those revealed in the Freeh Report.  If they had contained the same language as those publicized by Freeh, there would have been grounds to charge Spanier with failure to report child abuse.  However, there were no charges filed against Spanier in November 2011.

Regardless, the e-mails turned over in April 2011 established the date for the McQueary incident as 2001. As a result, the OAG knew that the incident was outside the statute of limitations to prosecute anyone for failure to report child abuse for that incident.  With McQueary's mistaken year testimony in hand, this evidence was suppressed - and the public was led to believe the incorrect 2002 date was the actual date of the crime.  But the OAG possessed very little evidence to implicate Spanier.

It was at this point that Corbett likely made the decision to use the Sandusky prosecution as the means to take out his political opponent.


April 2011 - Sandusky Investigation Finally Moves Forward

April 2011 marked when the investigation finally gathered momentum and the police and the OAG began to put the case together against Sandusky.  Police knocked on the door of Victim 4 and were immediately rebuffed, only to be contacted after the victim's father made contact with lawyer Ben Andreozzi to represent his son.  Andreozzi's name was found through advertisements, such as the one placed on the Dauphin County victim's assistance web-page.

According to public records, only one victim (Fisher) had testified to the grand jury about being abused at the time the police interviewed Victim 4 .The police interviewed Victim 4 several times, prompting him to disclose crimes against Sandusky by telling him stories about nine other alleged victims in the case.  An excerpt of their tape recorded conversation follows.


The Victim 4 interview was likely the big break in the case because prior to his disclosures, all the police had was Fisher's testimony, McQueary's testimony - that didn't have a known victim - and two police interviews of Victims 6 and 7 that didn't include allegations beyond endangerment and corruption.

Victim 7, who was interviewed in February, also made his grand jury appearance in April.  But at this point, there was still not enough to charge because the Victim 4 testimony could have been thrown out due to its contamination.

In May, the grand jury subpoenaed the names of the PSU Physical Plant employees (i.e., janitors) dating back to 1990.  According to Agent Sassano, janitor Ronald Petrosky contacted him to discuss an incident he was told about in 2000.

According to Petrosky, he had read an article about the graduate assistant witnessing a similar crime, and that had jogged his memory of the prior incident.  Unfortunately, the story can't be true because nothing about the McQueary incident made it into the press until November 2011.  The incident would later be debunked, but it remains a mystery who was behind the janitor hoax.

From there, Victims 5, 6, and 3 were presented as witnesses before the grand jury and that rounded out the original set of charges.  Now all that was left to do was for newly appointed AG Linda Kelly to have her staff write the story of Sandusky's abuse that would cause public outrage toward PSU.


November 2011 - The Sandusky Grand Jury Presentment -- The Big Diversion

The November 2011 Sandusky grand jury presentment and press conference had to be a couple of the greatest cases of government deception in Pennsylvania history.  One of the purposes of the November 2011 Sandusky grand jury presentment was to use the 2002 (sic) incident and the janitor incident to inflame public opinion against Penn State officials.  This was done by putting the crimes in a non-chronological order which fooled the reader into believing that if PSU had done something about the 2002 (sic) incident, nearly all of the other crimes wouldn't have occurred.

The reality was that the 2002 (sic) incident was the last crime to occur on PSU's campus - according to the crimes listed in the presentment.

In addition, placing the janitor incident at the end of the presentment was likely done to leave the reader with the impression that no one at PSU would dare report Sandusky for fear of losing their jobs.   The presentment was summarized in a press release by the OAG media chief, Nils Fredericksen, and sent out nationwide over PRNewswire.   I have to hand it to the authors for doing a marvelous job at creating community madness/hysteria about child sex abuse.


Linda Kelly and Jonelle Eshbach at OAG Press Conference
But just to make sure the public "got it" - meaning that PSU enabled Sandusky's crimes - the OAG used a bit of theater at its press conference to hammer the point home.  It placed two large placards on the stage, one with Sandusky's picture and the other with photos of Curley and Schultz.  That was done to anchor the connection between Sandusky and PSU in the minds of the public.

The focus on PSU was also reinforced by the OAG's version of events in the 1998 investigation.  The presentment gave the readers the impression that only the University Park police investigated the case and that former DA Ray Gricar made the decision not to prosecute.  However, the 1998 police report proved that DPW and CYS were involved in the investigation and an analysis revealed that the decision to close the case was made by DPW, not Gricar.

The importance of the suppression of information about the Victim 6 case can't be understated.  It was essential for the OAG to do this to ensure the public didn't realize that the Commonwealth's own agencies could have taken Sandusky off the streets in 1998.

But it was the highly inflammatory language used in the 2002 (sic)  incident, stating "he saw a naked boy ...being subjected to anal intercourse by a naked Sandusky," that caused public furor at PSU and deflected attention away from all other parties involved in this case (i.e. The Second Mile, DPW, CYS, the Pennsylvania State Police, OAG investigators, and Central Mountain High School).

The resulting outrage appeared to cause the PSU BOT to place Curley on administrative leave, to  re-retire Schultz, and to fire Spanier and Paterno.  However, e-mails and other information uncovered in this investigation indicate the Board's actions were planned sometime in advance, but simply thrown off by the leak of the grand jury presentment one week earlier than expected.  Had things gone according to plan, Governor Corbett would have been on campus to run the Board meeting where Spanier was removed from power.  With the early leak of the presentment, Corbett was left to work the phones with then BOT co-chair John Surma to make the arrangements for Spanier's (and Paterno's) removal.  Surma had been pushing for  Paterno's ouster since 2007 and it appeared that Paterno's firing was part of a quid pro quo arrangement between Surma and the governor.

The other big "tell" in the absurdity of PSU's roll-over after receiving the grand jury report was that they had the former General Counsel of Merck, who made the strategic decision to fight each lawsuit individually in the Vioxx case, sitting on the Board.  According to Surma, no one at PSU had reviewed the law pertaining to the charges of failure to report child abuse.  A fair reading of the law revealed that neither Curley nor Schultz were mandated reporters.  But Surma and his cohorts expected the public to believe that a room full of CEOs and the former Vioxx lawyer didn't review the laws or seek advice of counsel in the five days from the leak of the presentment to the firing of Paterno and Spanier?   

People, particularly PSU alumni, are not that stupid.

Despite the best efforts of the OAG to absolve TSM of any blame, the charity received enough bad publicity to cause Executive Director, Dr. Jack Raykovitz to resign.  The new leader of the charity, David Woodle, was uncertain about the charities future, but said it would wait for the review by Lynne Abraham  to complete before determining the appropriate next steps.  

One other signficant and unexpected development that occurred in the aftermath of the presentment was the removal of Schultz "secret file."  After learning that Schultz had re-retired from PSU, his administrative assistant removed the Sandusky file and Schultz's transitory file from his office and delivered them to his home. The file would later force the revelation of the real date in the McQueary incident.


December 2011 - DPW and CYS Go Missing at Preliminary Hearing


Continuing right along with the theme of missing and suppressed evidence, few people have ever mentioned that representatives from Centre County Children and Youth Services (CYS) and the Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare (DPW)  never showed up to testify at the preliminary hearing in December 2011 (or at the preliminary hearing in July of 2013).  One would think that if there was a failure to report child abuse, the prosecution would bring in witnesses from the child protection agencies to confirm that no report was made.  Perhaps these agencies kept written logs of the calls that could have been presented as evidence that no calls were made.  If those logs exist, they surely will tell the tale.

But more to the original point, why did the Commonwealth rely on the rather uncertain testimony of Agent  Sassano to declare that these agencies didn't get a report in 2002, rather than call in officials from the agencies?  Sassano identified Jerry Lauro, who was retired from DPW during the time frame of the investigation, as the person he contacted to verify no report was made in 2002.  Thus, Sassano did not testify to talking with a current employee of DPW to verify the failure of PSU to make a report.

Why didn't Lauro testify?  I suspect that the Commonwealth kept him off the stand because his testimony would have been impeached.  When you compare what was written in the 1998 police report to his press statements, he was caught in a lie.  Lauro told the press that reports were hidden from him but it was on record that he had reviewed the initial reports with Schreffler and that DPW had received the psychology report from Dr. Chambers.

Similarly, Carol Smith was quoted in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette denying that Centre County CYS had much interaction with The Second Mile, with the exception of some foster care support, which she characterized  as minimal. However, a check of the 2010 Second Mile Annual Report revealed that the charity had spent $241,295 on Foster Care services.  Sassano identified Smith as the person who told him she could not recall a report or investigation of Sandusky in 2002 (sic).

Rather than take the risk of calling these individuals as witnesses, the Commonwealth again gamed the system to avoid having its case weakened and, with it, weakening the possible leverage on Curley and Schultz.


January 2012 - Paterno Dies, Board Lies

Joe Paterno's death in January 2012 took away the Commonwealth's very slim chance of using him as a corroborating witness for the perjury charges against Curley and Schultz  Under the law, Paterno really could not be a corroborating witness because he was not present when McQueary talked to the PSU officials about the incident.  However, as evidenced by other actions in the case, the law really didn't seem to matter to the OAG.

Paterno's death, according to various legal experts, made his grand jury testimony inadmissible due to the Sixth Amendment's confrontation clause.  As a result, not only had they lost a corroborating witness for the perjury charges, but Paterno was the only other witness outside of a McQueary family member, who would back Mike's story for the Sandusky prosecution.  

However, the experts making the legal arguments for the press, like the press and the rest of the nation, were unaware that Paterno had clarified his grand jury testimony.

That statement came on November 6, 2011 and is excerpted below (my emphasis added):


"As my grand jury testimony stated, I was informed in 2002 by an assistant coach that he had witnessed an incident in the shower of our locker room facility. It was obvious that the witness was distraught over what he saw, but he at no time related to me the very specific actions contained in the Grand Jury report.  Regardless, it was clear that the witness saw something inappropriate involving Mr. Sandusky. As Coach Sandusky was retired from our coaching staff at that time, I referred the matter to university administrators.

By specific actions, Paterno was likely referring to were likely the terms "fondling" and "of a sexual nature" and the OAG's allegation of "anal intercourse."  

Without Paterno as a corroborating witness for the perjury charge and the non-existent evidence of a failure to report child abuse charge, the OAG had almost no leverage on Curley and Schultz at the end of January 2012.  

Meanwhile, the PSU BOT was in disarray and, a month earlier, had hired PR flack, Lanny Davis, to assist them in managing the crisis.  Davis advised the Board to take their message to the press, regarding being caught off guard about the Sandusky investigation and to justify their decision to fire Paterno.  

A number of BOT members met with the New York Times and the Patriot News and admitted that they had received a briefing from Spanier in May 2011, but they were told the investigation didn't involve PSU.  It would later be revealed that Baldwin also briefed them (and the President's Council) on the 1998 and 2002 incidents on campus and that PSU officials had testified before a grand jury.  The BOT had been caught lying about knowing nothing about the Sandusky case prior to November 2011.

As the month came to a close, the OAG hadn't provided an answer to the defendant's requests for the particulars, yet documents revealed that  Fina informed PSU officials that he still expected Curley and Schultz to "flip" on Spanier.

At first, I was puzzled by Fina's confidence, considering the lack of evidence, but then I realized his confidence was not based on his faith in the evidence he possessed, but rather in Penn State's hiring of Louis Freeh and everything that would go along with it.


The Freeh "Investigation"

Governor Tom Corbett boasted that he identified and recommended Freeh to conduct the investigation at Penn State.  While praising Freeh at the outset of his so-called "independent" investigation, Corbett remarked:

"And I think one of the reasons that someone like Mr. Freeh was appointed is because he understands the role of a grand jury investigation, the role of the prosecutors and will work well with the attorney general's office and Attorney General Linda Kelly so that [obstruction of the attorney general's investigation] does not happen."


I have referred to Freeh's investigation as "fake" and "phony" -- and when you get right down to it, it was essentially a repackaging of the OAG's work, including evidence suppression.



Freeh's instructions were not to obstruct the ongoing OAG investigation, therefore he and his team suppressed exculpatory evidence that could have been used in the defense of Curley and Schultz.  At least one previously unidentified person, who received a contemporaneous report of the McQueary incident, was among the 400 or so interviews by Freeh.  This individual was also interviewed by Agent Sassano.  But most importantly, this person, who doesn't back McQueary's version of events, has never been called as a witness in the Sandusky case nor was this person mentioned in the Freeh Report.


Additionally, evidence uncovered in this investigation revealed that President Erickson was also told that this person and two others (one of whom was not a PSU employee)  had contemporaneous knowledge of the 2001 incident.  Erickson chose not to correct or challenge Freeh's erroneous statements about McQueary, Paterno, Curley, Schultz, and Spanier being the only persons to know about the 2001 incident and, in so doing, let Freeh lay the blame on completely on PSU's "football culture."

There are numerous other examples of evidence suppression by Freeh:

--  E-mails and documents from Gary Schultz's file, which are contained in court filings, were not included in the Freeh Report. 
-- The 1998 police report, Dr. Chambers psychology report, and Seasock's evaluation -- all which pointed to a failure of DPW to indicate Sandusky as a child abuser in 1998 - were omitted from the report.  
-- An interview with a Clery Act official, indicating that he had discussed the Act with PSU officials (rebutting one of Freeh's findings) wasn't mentioned.  
-- A copy of the May 2011 PSU BOT Standing Orders, which also refuted Freeh's finding that Spanier should have briefed the BOT about Sandusky, was not referenced or included.  

Freeh wasn't at PSU to conduct an "independent" investigation.  He was there as a quasi-government agent who would build the case, then help to "convict" PSU officials before they ever got to court.



May 2012 - Amendments to Bill of Particulars & EWOC

With their hand being forced by the turnover of the Schultz file a month earlier, the OAG amended the Bill of Particulars on May 18, 2012, citing defects in the original charges and/or the dates of the offenses.  The Bill of Particulars also stated that defense counsel was provided extensive discovery.  I would submit the latter statement is false, considering that the e-mail evidence to establish the McQueary date was suppressed by the OAG until Freeh released it in July 2012.

In addition to the date change in the McQueary incident, several other changes were made to the Bill, including:
-- Changing the location of the Victim 5 crime from the East Area Locker Rooms to the Lasch Building;
-- Changing the date of the Victim 5 crime from a range of 1996 - 2002 down to August 2001;
-- Changing from "numerous" offenses against Victim 5 to a single incident;
-- Revising the dates of the Victim 3 crimes from 2000-2002 to July 1999-December 2001;
-- Revising the end date of the Victim 9 crime from 2009 to December 2008.

Some of the most suspicious changes were related to Victim 5, which went from numerous crimes over six years to a single crime in August 2001.  According to the grand jury presentment, Victim 5 testified to being abused in a single incident between 1996 and 1998.  It appeared that the change in Victim 5's story may have been related to enabling an Endangering the Welfare of Children (EWOC) charge against PSU officials, since the new date put the crime after the alleged failure to report the 2001 incident.  Is this a case of the victim simply remembering the incident more clearly a year after his grand jury testimony or is it a case of coaching the witness?

The other interesting change is the truncation of the Victim 9 end date from 2009 to December 2008.  December 2008 coincides with when The Second Mile was informed of Sandusky's abuse investigation and the point when they allegedly claimed to stop his access to children.  However, the latter claim has been debunked by numerous sources, including Victim 9 himself, who testified that Sandusky continued to abuse him past his sixteenth birthday in July 2009. This change appears to be an attempt by the OAG to eliminate EWOC charges against The Second Mile.  Meanwhile, the abuse of Victim 9, which occurred years after the last incident on PSU's campus would be used to support the eventual EWOC charges against Curley, Schultz, and Spanier.

A week after the filing of the amended Bill of Particulars, TSM announced it was shutting down and transferring its assets to Arrow Ministries.  The scandal caused donations to dry up and volunteers fled from the charity.  The review of TSM by Lynne Abraham was scuttled under the guise that the transfer to Arrow obviated the need to determine how children were put in danger at the charity.  


June 2012 - Sandusky Trial Was Mockery of Justice

The Sandusky trial also had its share of evidence suppression and manipulation.  While the Commonwealth had changed the date of the McQueary incident a month prior to the trial, it continued to hide that fact that it possessed the e-mail evidence from the PSU administrators.

It appeared that the OAG prosecutors devised a new story on how they arrived at the date of the incident.  OAG narcotics agent Anthony Sassano testified that he established the date of the crime by: looking up the movie Rudy (that McQueary was watching on the night he went to the locker room) in TV Guides; obtaining a diploma from Dr. Dranov; and triangulating the date using vacancies on the PSU football staff.

Curiously, Sassano didn't think to do this in November 2010 after interviewing McQueary and Dranov.  Nor had it dawned on him to do it before he testified a year later at the December 2011 preliminary perjury hearing, where he confirmed he checked for records of the 2002 incident.  Sassano never said what motivated him or what his curiosity was that made him establish the new date right before the trial.   Ironically, Sassano's testimony would keep the public in the dark about the e-mails until they were leaked in late June 2012.

In addition to keeping the source of the date change for the McQueary incident under wraps, the Commonwealth also managed to suppress a great deal of information related to the Victim 2 and Victim 8 incidents.

Victim 2 Incident
In September 2011, investigators interviewed a person who claimed to be Victim 2.  This person would later tell his story to a trained FBI investigator in November 2011, stating that no abuse occurred and adding the detail that he heard a locker door slam and that he never saw McQueary.  The significance of the detail of the locker door slamming was that McQueary had not mentioned that publicly until December 2011.  However, it is a locker room after all and a door slamming is hardly unusual.  Moreover, Tom Farrell, attorney for Gary Schultz stated that this same person was interviewed by OAG and Postal Inspection Service agents and gave four different versions of his story.  As a result, the Commonwealth refused to acknowledge this person as the victim and left Victim 2 as "unknown."

The "unknown" victim actually helped the prosecution's motivation of condemning PSU while sparing TSM because:  
1) there was no chance of a rebuttal McQueary's story of abuse in the PSU locker room; and 2) if the victim is unknown, there is no proof he was a TSM participant, thus there were no grounds to charge TSM with failure to report child abuse.  

Victim 8 Incident
At the top of the list of unusual occurrences in the Victim 8 case was the fact that the eye-witness janitor, James Calhoun, was not able to testify because he suffered from dementia.

It appeared that prosecutor McGettigan played a little game to prove that Calhoun was not competent to take the stand.   On the last day of the Commonwealth's presentation - McGettigan offered a stipulation that Dr. Bharat Adroja, an internist from Lock Haven, had examined Calhoun and determined that he was not competent to testify.  McGettigan offered no letter from Adroja verifying the examination or any other proof that the examination took place. The court and the defense accepted the stipulation without argument.  The fact that Dr. Adroja was not listed on the Commonwealth's list of potential witnesses during jury selection indicates this was also a last minute switch by the prosecutors.


The other, more troubling, last minute switch occurred right before janitor Ronald Petrosky was to take the stand.  According to the February 21 and May 18, 2012 Bills of Particulars - as well as the grand jury testimony - the Victim 8 crime scene was allegedly the Assistant Coaches Locker Room.  However, as the counsels discussed the upcoming testimony to be offered, Karl Rominger, defense co-counsel, raised the issue that a curtain was blocking the janitor's view.  Chief prosecutor Fina responded that there was no curtains in the locker room based on the McQueary photos.

In effect, Fina had changed the crime scene from the Assistant Coaches Locker Room to the Staff Locker Room.  Judge Cleland accepted the change and the trial moved forward and Ronald Petrosky testified to the crime occurring in the new location.

Petrosky ended the day's testimony, however when the court came back into session, the second janitor, Jay Witherite, wasn't presented as a witness.  McGettigan argued because there were two janitors as witnesses, it strengthened the case for the excited utterance to be admitted as hearsay.  However, Witherite never took the stand and the court never realized that an essential witness didn't testify (as evidence by Judge Cleland's ruling on the Sandusky appeal).

Cleland sentenced Sandusky to concurrent sentences for the crimes in the janitor incident, thus in his appeal ruling, he stated that if he had erred in the excited utterance ruling, that it was "harmless."  While that may have been the case for Sandusky, it was certainly not the case for Penn State.

Isn't it ironic that the Commonwealth could not identify the victims for the two "most horrific" crimes in this case?  Also, it must be merely a coincidence that the eye-witnesses were both "shaken" by what they saw, each of them failed to intervene and stop the molestation, and neither made a contemporaneous report to the proper authorities.  And it is also merely a coincidence that the crimes took place in the Lasch building, after Sandusky had retired, and at a time when his access was by virtue of his status as an emeritus faculty member.  

The Victim 2 and Victim 8 convictions were used by Louis Freeh to indict Penn State as a "football culture" that put a greater priority on football than on the welfare of children and to promote the completely preposterous narrative that Sandusky's access to PSU's football program was the "very currency" he used to attract his victims.


July 2012 - The Freeh Report and Press Conference

While the story going in was that Freeh was hired to conduct an independent investigation, Freeh's track record in the BP and Wynn cases makes it more likely that Freeh was hired to justify a predetermined outcome.  Freeh's team allegedly conducted over 400 interviews and allegedly examined over 3.5 million documents and e-mails during its investigation.  Yet after all of that "work," all Freeh's team could muster in the way of evidence were three vague e-mails that were hardly definitive in terms of proving who was aware of Sandusky's abuse and what their role was in reporting it.


Possible Tampered E-mail
Freeh was paid $6.5 million to provide the justification for the firing of Spanier and Paterno, and the removal of administrators Curley and Schultz.  

Based on the original charges filed in the case, it is highly probable that the e-mail evidence originally obtained in the OAG investigation did not implicate Paterno or Spanier. It is probable that Freeh's team (likely at the direction of Ken Frazier) made slight modifications to implicate them in the decision not to report the   2001 incident.  

As I pointed out in my Upon Further Review presentation, two of the 2001 e-mails have interspersed html code that may be a resulted in the course of editing.   The red underlined phrase may have been an edit to implicate Paterno.  Other phrases, such as "we become vulnerable for not reporting it" and "we are aware of the first situation" may have been added to enable charges against Spanier and Curley, respectively. 

Given that Freeh's computers were not connected to the University system and were operating in stand-alone status, the time and dates on them could be manipulated.  There would be no server logs to record any changes, thus edits to files could be done without leaving a trace. This scenario cannot be ruled out in the Penn State case until the original files are obtained from the servers and compared with the e-mails printed in the Freeh Report and in the various court filings.

One other piece of circumstantial, corroborating evidence was the statement made by Kenneth Frazier on April 15, 2013 regarding the e-mail and documentary evidence.  In a heated moment, Frazier exclaimed:

"The fact of the matter is, those documents say what they say, and no amount of hand waving can change what those documents say."

The guilty dog barks the loudest.

And Frazier was doing a lot of barking in defense of the "independent" investigation by Freeh and the (by then) discredited Freeh Report.

As the Bagwell e-mails would later reveal, the Freeh group worked hand-in-hand with the OAG investigators to assist in the prosecution of Sandusky. However, we didn't really find out the truth about how much cooperation was going on until Kimberly Belcher, John Corro, and Braden Cook testified about the e-mails and Schultz file at the July 2013 preliminary hearing

OAG forensics expert Cook testified that he joined the investigation in November 2011 -- six months after Corro turned the original e-mail files over to the OAG.  The individual who preceded Cook and accepted the e-mails from Corro remains a mystery, however Cook testified that the critical Schultz e-mails went missing from his inventory in March 2012.  He then testified that a DVD, with files dated in 2005, was supplied to him containing the missing e-mails.  However, he also testified to receiving Schultz's network file share on March 23, 2012.


Not so coincidentally, Louis Freeh stated that his team made independent discovery of the e-mails on  March 20, 2012 -- just a few days before Cook testified to receiving Schultz's network file share.  Coincidence? Hardly.
It appeared that the Commonwealth used the e-mail evidence to establish the perjury particulars for Curley and Schultz in March 2012, yet the Commonwealth was still suppressing the fact that the e-mails revealed the year of the McQueary incident to be 2001 up through May 2012.


History of Mishandled Evidence
Freeh's FBI had a history of utilizing questionable evidence analysis while under his watch, causing  Frederick Whitehurst to blow the whistle on tens of thousands of cases that were bolstered by faulty evidence.  Whitehurst called what happened at the FBI labs "a law enforcement holocaust."

However, none of this history was well known to the public nor to the defendants when the first leaks of the e-mails came about in July 2012 and when the Freeh Report, trumpeting the e-mails as the most critical evidence in the case was sent out world-wide.

Despite the fact there were only three e-mails that had information that could be construed as pertaining to the 1998 and 2001 cases, Freeh painted them as damning evidence to the public.  No one questioned him and some journalists, such as Sally Jenkins, went as far as to say:  "those emails are not just smoking guns, there are flames leaping from them."  

Jenkins and others believed every word that Freeh said in his press conference, which turned public opinion completely against Penn State -- and the University did nothing in its own defense.  Even worse, the University more or less admitted liability for Sandusky's abuse and informed the public it would provide financial settlements and lifetime counseling to the victims.  The public's assumption of PSU officials' guilt was at an all-time high and the pundits were calling for the Penn State football program to be terminated. 



Karen Peetz and Ken Frazier Praised the Freeh Report
Meanwhile, Freeh was riding high and receiving praise for his comprehensive and thorough report. Little did the public know that Freeh had lied about finding the critical evidence in the case, nor had anyone thoroughly analyzed the legitimacy of the Freeh Report findings.  Everyone - save Penn Staters - simply assumed because he was a former FBI Director that the investigation was legitimate.  Even after negative articles surfaced about the rejection of his recommendations to FIFA, the press ignored it and focused on the next big whack that would come down on PSU - the NCAA sanctions.


Erickson Sells PSU Down The River, Marsh Was Window Dressing

Information uncovered in my investigation revealed that OAG officials found evidence of possible minor NCAA violations as early as January 2012 and subsequently informed the PSU and the NCAA.  The NCAA, which at the time was violating its own enforcement and investigation rules by utilizing information obtained in a bankruptcy proceeding for its Miami (Fla) investigation, stated it would "wait for the Freeh Report" rather than act on the OAG's information.   After the release of the Freeh Report, the NCAA decided to use it in place of their own investigation.  It is also notable that the NCAA never provided Penn State with a formal Notice of Allegations -- and instead proceeded directly to punishment.

The PSU BOT hired Gene Marsh at the last minute -- on July 11th -  to help them with the NCAA negotiations.  According to experts, PSU should have hired Marsh or another negotiator with NCAA experience upon receipt of Emmert's letter in November 2011.  Instead, newly appointed Athletic Director Dave Joyner believed the NCAA would "steer clear" of the Sandusky matter and didn't hire anyone.   The delay in hiring a negotiator was a colossal blunder, but as you will see, it appears that the hiring of Marsh was all for show.


PSU President Rodney Erickson allegedly signed the Consent Decree under the threat of a four-year Death Penalty and to avoid an investigation by the NCAA.   The latter point is quite interesting because there was nothing for Erickson to fear if the NCAA investigated. Information obtained in the course of this investigation revealed that Erickson had been informed about the possible minor violations, but more importantly, he was also told that Athletic Director Tim Curley and compliance director John Bove were "fastidious on rules violations, e.g., giving donations."   Rather than stand firm and insist the NCAA follow its own rules, Erickson allegedly went along.  

But where was Gene Marsh?

According to ESPN's Don Van Natta, Marsh had taken a vacation to a one room cabin with no electricity and no running water shortly after being hired by PSU.  Marsh was hired on July 11th.  The Freeh Report and press conference happened on July 12th -- and Marsh, who was hired to negotiate with the NCAA was on vacation??   In Maine.   

At some point, Marsh stopped his vacation and flew back to his office -- in Alabama -- and conducted his  negotiating from there.  Marsh carried a list of potential punishments around with him in the event he actually had to negotiate with the NCAA and sat watching his computer, waiting for an e-mail to arrive with the Consent Decree.

You can't make this stuff up.

As I suggested in this blogpost, it appeared that Erickson was in dialog with the NCAA about punishment at least from July 17th forward.  According to Erickson, the negotiations took place over five intense days. However, I think it is probable that Erickson and other PSU officials were pushing for the NCAA to inflict strong punishments on PSU from the very early stages of the scandal.  One of the first statements Erickson and administrators made in December 2011 was that there should be less emphasis put on football and that academics and research should be the face of the University.

Quite frankly, PSU's actions and inactions during the entire scandal suggested the fix was in from the start. PSU never protested when it was being slammed in the media for its failures, yet ample evidence existed that TSM and the state agencies also failed to put a stop to Sandusky.

The PSU BOT immediately threw its officials under the bus and claimed total ignorance of the pending scandal.  It was later revealed the Board and the President's Council - approximately 50 people - were briefed on the scandal in May 2011.   

When portions of the 2001 e-mail were leaked to the press in early July, PSU declined to comment rather than decry release of information that was allegedly subject to attorney-client privilege.  

Finally, after the Freeh Report was released, the Board never reviewed it, never accepted it, then accepted punishment and told everyone to "move forward."

The NCAA's Ameen Najjar was one of the first to publicly suggest that Erickson had offered up the punishments to the NCAA and that there was no threat of the death penalty by the NCAA.  Najjar, the former investigator, wrote:


"The Penn State deal is a travesty.  The NCAA did not impose anything. Penn State agreed to and self-imposed the penalties, waved all due process and waived any right to appeal. The NCAA had/has NO authority to impose any penalties in that situation and PSU's president sold the school down the river!"
Oregon State President and NCAA Executive Committee member, Ed Ray, backs part of Najjar's story regarding that there was no threat of the death penalty.  On July 23, 2012, Ray said:

"...the overwhelming vote – we took a vote – in both the executive committee and the Division I board was not to include a suspension of play or death penalty, and then we quickly moved to the menu of actions that you heard about today."

Given all of the above, one seriously has to question if Marsh was truly engaged in negotiations.  It is more likely that Marsh,  like Sen. George Mitchell,  was simply window dressing to provide the appearance that we was performing a needed task, when there was really nothing to do.

With the publicity surrounding the Freeh Report and the NCAA Consent Decree, the public was convinced that the Sandusky incidents at PSU were investigated and that all involved were guilty.   

When Governor Corbett held a press conference after the release of the Freeh Report, he was asked about if there would be charges filed against Spanier.  Corbett's reply seems to shed light on his motives in the Sandusky case:

“He wasn’t exactly pleased with my first budget and he let the world know about that.” 



To be continued...









41 comments:

  1. it's long, Ray but your thoughts are so concise, accurate AND you have the documentation for PROOF!!!...*standing ovation and cant wait for Part 2*...

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  2. When are all of these duplicitous bastards going down? I want to see many of these characters in prison garb.

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  3. Outstanding work! I certainly hope current AG Kane is following the facts as you’ve discovered them.

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  4. Hi Ray, again, excellent work and thank you for all that you do. Just saw something that I think was a typo concerning JoePa's written statement about the GJP: "That statement came on November 6, 2001 and is excerpted below (my emphasis added):"

    Did you mean November 6, 2011?

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    1. Thanks, Jason. Even with proofreading, it was tough to catch everything (and there's no spell check or grammar check on the blog software). I was kind of in a hurry to publish this before the next deadline hit for the NCAA lawsuit.

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  5. Outstanding Ray! I'm impressed beyond words with what you have presented here. Now, do you think Moulton has reached most of these same conclusions? Because that's what we need now, the man Kane hired to find the truth to tell the public just what really happened.

    You have contributed to the greater good of humanity Ray with your work. I know that sounds trite, but I truly believe that good men are driven by the truth and decency. Unlike Louis Freeh and Tom Corbett, men such as these are driven by self-serving greed and evil.

    Kathleen Kane should not hesitate to vindicate her state, its government, and the decent people at PSU. She must remove Tom Corbett as Governor for his sickening abuse of power against innocent people.

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    1. I have covered a lot of this ground before on blogposts and in Report 3, however, the latest grand jury testimony of Baldwin and Spanier revealed a lot of new information. While Moulton's team may have it, they may not have had time to analyze it or view it in the context provided here.

      Thanks for the kind words. I can only hope that Kane does the right thing with the evidence and the results of Moulton's investigation.

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    2. Kane has put herself on the tines of a fork. There is no way for her to get out of this unscathed. Just hoping she does the right thing before licking her wounds.

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    3. Mr. Verrnon: Here's my take on Kane putting herself "on the tines of a fork": I believe she saw this scandal as a political avenue to get elected to the office of the Attorney General. And I believe the excessively lengthy and ongoing nature of her investigation, as she has described it, is yet another political move that allows her to sit back and buy time--to see what side to align herself with. I believe Kane can, and will, easily align herself with whoever she perceives to be the "winner" in this battle. Cynical on my part? Perhaps, but it may also be exactly what she's doing.

      So the truth will not be admitted to, or shown to us by politicians unless that truth serves them in some way. An injustice done to the people by government can only be shown to us by those that just want the truth for the truth's sake. And so, Ray Blehar and John Ziegler speak for us.

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    4. As this rather long blog post shows, this is a very complex case. I have to say that you need to adjust your expectations.

      This is not about buying time. It's an independent investigation that involves a review of over 15,000 pages of grand jury testimony and an untold number of witnesses. Reliable sources reported that Schreffler and Ralston were interviewed as part of this investigation, which means that the investigation is looking at the 1998 case, at a minimum, and may also be looking at the role of DPW.

      I've been at this for 18 months and I have over 100 leads to follow up on. I had a six month head start on Moulton's team.

      If you want fast, you won't get the truth. Not even close.

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    5. I know Ray, this is my weakness as an observer of this mess, impatience. You always do remind me of that. And I'm fine for a while, then I read something new from you or Ziegler that further points to the overall guilt of these corrupt players that framed PSU. And my impatience is renewed.

      I also have a healthy distrust of PA state government. That is justified, even the rest of the nation knows just how corrupt PA state government is. So you see, if we can just get an announcement of guilt at the top, from Kane, then she can follow off in other directions slowly, but publicly. And I totally understand that good investigations take time. But we, the public, need to be kept abreast of the investigation developments and where it's leading. This will prevent the impatience of the members of the public that are trying to follow this without official updates.

      So I guess part of my point is, why all the clandestine stuff? Doesn't the public have a right to follow Kane's (Moulton's) investigation as it unfolds? I mean, we did put her in there based on her promise to investigate. So I think we're owed some official updates on this investigation. You can certainly agree Ray, that this would begin to educate the public as to why PSU and Paterno are innocent.

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    6. Truthseeker,
      Good investigations are often clandestine because it is important not to reveal what the objectives and who the targets are. So, no, you don't get to know what is happening.

      I do the same thing with my investigation. There is a lot I know that I haven't revealed and some things that I will never reveal -- unless Kane and the Feds miss them in their reports of investigation.

      I would say the best scenario here is a joint press conference by Kane and the Feds where it all comes down in one fell swoop.

      Patience.

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    7. My concern is that the Governor and his well oiled machine are going to make it look like a totally politically motivated investigation. TC obviously knows how to manipulate the media, and it sounds like his lieutenants are already on the move. He and Frank Fina have already made thinly veiled threats, and I have no doubt that it's going to be a blood bath. Also, if Kane takes Spanier to trial, both she and Corbett are going to be shredded by Spanier's attorneys, who are among the top litigators in the USA.

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    8. Gregory V
      Yes. Governor C and his allies at the Patriot News have been smearing this as a political vendetta. That is a common tactic -- to accuse others of what you are guilty of yourself.

      I know from talking to some people close to the investigation that the veiled threats by Fina, McGettigan, and others had absolutely no effect on Moulton. Actually, they weren't veiled threats -- they were published -- and the threat was to "go public."

      Go public? With what?

      That they ran an incompetent investigation and one of the most corrupt prosecutions in PA's history!!! They have nothing on Kane.

      When Moulton releases his report, it will be a bloodbath. I've shown how incompetent this whole investigation was.....and I'm sure Moulton has better information than I do.

      I think Kane is setting up her prosecutors to get hammered. They are probably begging for her to drop the case and she's probably telling them she can't do it because the press would eat her alive. She has to let it go forward and then watch Baldwin, Harmon, and other prosecution witnesses get destroyed.

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    9. Her prosecutors getting hammered indeed! I've heard her state that she intends to get convictions at the trials, and I take her statements at face value. I also heard the new words that her team put into the mouth of MM. If she wasn't fully aware of what he was going to say on the stand, then she is a damn fool. Self immolation? I remember Joe Paterno's comment about a battlefield being so strewn with bodies that nobody knew who won the battle. What a prophesy!

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    10. The fork that Kane is impaled upon is that if anything close to the truth comes out, there is enough evidence for a mistrial and Sandusky will walk. In fact, I am surprised that his attorneys have not filed an Federal suit for violation of his 5th and 14th Amendment rights. Witness tampering, suborning perjury, and deliberately poisoning the jury pool with lies and hoaxes are not looked upon too well by Federal magistrates.

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  6. Ray I only have one question and understand if you can't delve deeper. Regarding the other person interviewed who had been told of 2001, was Erickson "contemporaneously" aware in 2001 or was he told of this report only later? Just trying to make sure I understand your language here.

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  7. Erickson was informed about the other people knowing in January 2012.

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  8. "Freeh's instructions were not to obstruct the ongoing OAG investigation, therefore he and his team suppressed exculpatory evidence that could have been used in the defense of Curley and Schultz. " Sounds like possible cause for professional disciplinary action against Freeh in the states in which he is licensed to practice law (NJ, NY, and DC). I recall that evidence suppression, although not necessarily in the same form, is what got Mike Nifong disbarred.

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  9. EXCELLENT!! I think this is an especially great piece of work for those that might not have had time to follow along OR not sure how it all fits together. (PLEASE SHARE FOLKS!!) The timeline format adds great perspective. It not only shows the FACTS that are part of this fiasco, but you also nicely point out what SHOULD have been or is customary to do. Something few of us know.

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  10. Ray,
    Concerning the possibility that PSU emails were altered - Who has access to the originals, when will they be compared to the versions in Freeh report, and who will do that?

    Thanks for all you do.

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    1. You're welcome.

      I believe that the independent investigator (Moulton) will have his team take a look to see if the evidence was altered.

      We'll see what happens.

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  11. The complexities of this case seem to be the reason why the PSU administrators and Paterno will never get an exoneration from the press. Unless revelations about TSM and CYS/ DPW include some bombshell that jars the general public media, I don't see the sports media caring about this at all. They already made their money on the "winningest coach in history dies in disgrace" narrative.

    Having said that, I hope that there are legal ramifications for the BOT and all the other hideous players in this farce. PA has a really bad history of court decisions and the AG is one of the most corrupt offices. I wish someone like you had been around to look into Bud Dwyer's fall from grace and suicide. Thornburgh's hands were all over that one. But that's another story. I just remember a statement at the time along the lines of, "The evidence against Bud would never have stood up outside of the central Pennsylvania court room."

    Anyway, thanks for all the good work. I hope Spanier, Curley and Schultz get a fair trial. I hope that Corbett collapses in the polls (any hope for a "Watergate" style expose and resignation???) due to his atrocious behavior. And I hope the Paterno defamation suit brings the NCAA and Freeh to light as the frauds they are.

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    1. Nick and Mariko: As you spoke of the Budd Dwyer case, and how it is part of the ruthlessness and corruption in PA politics, I had to learn more. I watched the video of his final press conference and televised suicide. It turned my stomach to see this kind of desperate act. Whether Dwyer was framed or not, the desperation is what I'm appalled by.

      With Budd Dwyer, vanished Ray Gricar, murdered Jonathan Luna, the Kids for Cash abuse, and now what Tom Corbett has done to Joe Paterno and PSU, does anyone else get a feeling that there is something terribly desperate and wrong in PA government, and has been for a while? And then the Dick Thornburgh connection to the Budd Dwyer suicide, and now his connection to this PSU travesty of justice? When I say connection, I mean Thornburgh takes a big cash payout from the Paternos to denounce the Freeh report as it pertains to Joe Paterno. But then he turns around and endorses for Governor, the very man that called for Freeh to frame Paterno.

      Does anyone else see the padded room type of insanity I'm talking about here? Is money the God of all Gods in PA, over ethics, morality, and even human life?

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    2. Ray,
      "Long time listener, fist time caller."
      #1. OAG destroyed witness notes in the House of Representatives' Republican "Commputergate" and Democrat Steve Stetler's trials. Have you discovered any evidence of OAG destroying notes to avoid problems with their prosecution?
      #2. Regarding the OAG House Republican "Computergate" trial in Harrisburg. On Tuesday, Nov 1, 2011 the jury was charged with the case. The jury was not sequestered. On Friday night, Nov 4, the Sandusky arrest was leaked and the national news erupted on Saturday, Nov. 5. Linda Kelly held a press conference in Harrisburg on Monday, Nov 7. On Tuesday, Nov 8, after five days, the "Commputergate" jury reported out. Guilty of all counts. Is it possible the OAG leak regarding Sandusky was designed to assure a conviction of the Republicans?

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    3. Elroy,
      I suspect that exculpatory evidence may have been destroyed and/or suppressed in this case. If you remember, Agent Sassano stated that he had subpoenaed records related to the 2002 (sic) incident from DPW - and they have them. Was that a slip up? If there were records laying around, I'm sure they got destroyed.

      The leak of the presentment was done, in my estimation, to throw off Governor Corbett's planned coup d etat at PSU. I don't think it had to do with computergate.

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  12. If Chris Christie can throw a high-holy fit over a political slight - ordering a state agency to close lanes over the GW Bridge as political retribution against Fort Lee Mayor Mark Sokolich, then what would Tom Corbett be capable of as governor of PA to exact political retribution against Graham Spanier?

    The parallels between the two cases couldn't be clearer. As Christie's role in the bridge scandal comes to light, I hope Corbett's role comes to light in this scandal. Misuse of government agencies, political appointees doing a governor's bidding - all for political retribution...

    ReplyDelete
  13. Ray, you did a good job. I viewed this as an advocation of a party or parties, much like an attorney. I believe you have done as much as you can with the facts you have.

    The searching question is the emails and Courtney's billing entry.

    On the Sunday TC and GS were informed of JS, Courtney described 2.9 hours of work researching the reporting of of children, and that he had a conference with GS. The billing entry states as follows:

    "Conference with G Schultz re reporting of suspected child abuse."

    This was the same day that TC and GS spoke to MM. The same day. Now, GS is disputing what MM told them and, apparently, is in disagreement with PSU's attorneys description of what GS himself told him.

    Curley's email, of course, reverses the decision to go to to the Department of Public Welfare, which is what GS wrote on 2/26/01. Curley was uncomfortable with doing anything other than going to TSM and Sandusky. GS and Spanier readily agree. We know what Curley did afterwards. We also know about GS's notes and what he thought.

    You did respond to my comment, but did not address these specific issues. Do you have a rebuttal to this?

    Finally, there has been reference to a 1984 complaint about Sandusky and a child. What did this entail? I have not seen an explanation.

    Thanks.

    ReplyDelete
  14. JJ,
    Thanks for the kind words.

    Tim and Gary did not meet with Mike McQueary until on or about February 19th - a week after first learning of the incident from Joe Paterno.

    Mike has admitted it was a week to 10 days after talking with Joe that he was contacted by Curley.

    Curley said he met with Mike within two weeks of talking with Joe.

    So, you are wrong about them meeting with Mike on the same day they got legal advice from Courtney.


    A billing record is not a record of discussion. It is obvious that Courtney would have done legal research on the reporting of suspected child abuse because that is the TITLE of the statute. What else would he be searching the statutes for? Horseplay? Inappropriate showering?

    According to Courtney, he advised to contact CYS. Schultz believed CYS was contacted by PSU. Do you have any evidence that CYS wasn't contacted? I've yet to see any. No one from CYS testified.

    See Eileen Morgan's recent post. If CYS was contacted and deemed it to be a General Protective Service complaint, they don't have to investigate it. They can make an assessment and choose not to. This is likely what happened AND it explains the delay in Curley talking with Sandusky. Had it not been for PSU calling CYS, Curley would have met with Sanusky on February 16 (Friday) of that week.

    There was NEVER a decision to contact DPW. It was always left as an option. In the minds of PSU officials, CYS and DPW were separate entities. CYS had a chummy relationship with Second Mile and PSU didn't consider them to be the people to go to if getting tough on enforcing a ban on Sandusky was needed. That explains why DPW was always optional.
    There was no REVERSAL.

    I have not seen an explanation about 1984 either.

    ReplyDelete
  15. Ray,

    I believe GS wrote an email indicating that they had agreed to contact Sandusky, TSM and DPW. In response, Curley wrote that he was uncomfortable going forward with the plan, and that he would only go to JS and TSM. The DPW, TC wrote, would only be contacted if Sandusky did not admit he had a problem and did not agree to obtain professional help.

    I'm not trying to belabor the issue, but this is the part of the case that troubled me, and still does. If these emails were not turned over, I believe TC and GS would walk. However, it will be close to impossible to explain this exchange away. I assume the accused will not be taking the stand. It will be interesting to see how their attorneys tackle this.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. JJ, as is the usual with you, in this post and your previous post you've twisted and misrepresented the actual wording of the E-mail in question to suit your purposes. In your earlier post you wrote, "Curley was uncomfortable with doing anything other than going to TSM and Sandusky" The exact wording (as clunky as it was) was "I am having trouble going to everyone, but the person involved." The original plan was to confront JS and demand he stop showering with kids and also to bust JS to the Second Mile behind his back. A less clunky way of wording this without changing the meaning is to write it as "I am having trouble going to everyone except the person involved." Curley wanted to let Sandusky know what they were going to do up front instad of busting him to the 2nd mile behind his back. Curley actually changed the plan to do MORE than what was originally intended, not LESS. This explains Spanier's follow up e-mail praising Curley for doing more (emphasis is mine) "it requires you to go a step FURTHER and means that your conversation will be all the MORE DIFFICULT." The idea to go to the DPW was always a backup plan in the case that Sandusky refused their demand to stop showering with children. Since they noted that their interest in DPW was as experts in child care the inference is that Sandusky might have benn willing to listen to the DPW's counsel in the case he refused to respect C/S/S's point of view.

      You have repurposed and twisted the quote as if a rewriting would be "I am having trouble going to ANYONE except the person involved." this completely changes the meaning and is an example of intellectual dishonesty, a hallmark of your posts. "everyone" does not equate to "anyone." You are a very, very dishonest person, JJ.

      Delete
    2. mhentz,

      I don't know if you thought you were insulting me by throwing out labels, but you didn't. At all.

      "The original plan was to confront JS and demand he stop showering with kids and also to bust JS to the Second Mile behind his back."

      BS. The plan was to go to Sandusky, TSM, and DPW. Read the emails. It lays it out perfectly.The rest of your argument falls apart, as it is based upon this demonstrably untrue premise. Do you want me to point to the emails where going to the state was specifically agreed upon? I will.

      In an e-mail dated February 26, 2001, Mr. Schultz, who oversaw the campus police department at the time, wrote to Mr. Curley, outlining a three-part plan: "talk with the subject asap regarding the future appropriate use of the University facility,"... "contacting the chair of the charitable organization," and "contacting the Department of Welfare" (his words, Einstein).

      Curley had a change of heart, allegedly after having a conversation with "Joe"

      "After giving it more thought and talking it over with Joe yesterday, I am uncomfortable with what we agreed were the next steps," Mr. Curley wrote. "I am having trouble with going to everyone, but the person involved."

      Mr. Curley then wrote that he wanted to meet with Mr. Sandusky privately, tell him there's a problem, and that "we want to assist the individual to get professional help."

      In the same e-mail, Mr. Curley also suggested that if Mr. Sandusky "is cooperative," Penn State "would work with him" to tell Second Mile. If not, Mr. Curley wrote, the university would inform both Second Mile and outside authorities ... the aforementioned DPW.

      Your everyone/anyone analysis is as stupid as the other points you try to make. Curley said he had trouble going to anyone but the persons involved (PS I think the kid would be involved, but thats just me). And TSM. And, he wrote that they would go to DPW if the ol' tickle monster did not admit he had a problem and obtain "professional help".

      All this nonsense about going to DPW as "experts in child care"

      Child Care?

      Now, its not child abuse, its child care. Maybe PSU was thinking about setting up a day care center for boys that would allow JS unfettered access to kids without interuption. (a 60 year old man showering with a boy ... that Schultz had the impression, mind you, after speaking to MM, invoved Ol' Jer' grabbing a young boys genitals, at 9:30 on a Friday Night, alone in the shower). After a 95 page report of abuse had been created just 3 years earlier involving JS and a naked boy in PSU's shower .....

      Delete
    3. JJ,
      Isn't it interesting that Schultz's #1 concern in his e-mail is TELLING JERRY NOT TO USE THE FACILITIES with TSM kids. Then, he confirms that Curley needs to let Second Mile know about the prohibition. And, finally, Schultz suggests the Curley inform DPW about the prohibition.

      Next, as you should know by now, state and federal law requires that CYS keeps the identity of the child confidential. Curley has NO BUSINESS talking with the child. That's the domain of CYS.

      As Schultz and Courtney both said, someone from PSU contacted CYS about the 2001 case. I suspect that is why there were delays in Curley and Schultz meeting with Sandusky and McQueary.

      Similar delays occurred in the 1998 case when DPW was called in to investigate. Plan was to talk to Sandusky on May 7, but that was postponed by DPW until June 1st.

      As I've mentioned before, we don't know if the contents of the e-mail are authentic. We know from one of Sandusky's retirement letters (that Freeh obtained) that he voiced concerns about his mental health. There were also concerns noted on the Schultz file -- which PSU may have possessed as early as 5 January 2011.

      Delete
    4. OK JJ, so you like Schultz's notes a lot. well, you're just going to love the living shit out of hie note from his meeting with Curley on 2/12/01. frankly, as a self-styled expert in Schultz's notes I'm verys surprised that you seem to have no familairty with this one. I'll retype it here since you've proven in the past that you can't be counted on to relay this stuff with any degree of accuracy:

      Talked with TMC.
      reviewed 1998 history.
      - Agreed TMC will meet with JVP & advise we think TMC should meet w JS on Friday.
      - unless he "confesses" to having a problem, TMC will indicate we need to have DPW review the matter as an independent agency concerned w child welfare.
      -TMC will keep me posted.

      Look at the second bullet point. read it closely. Move your lips if you have to. "UNLESS he "confesses" to having a problem, TMC will indicate we need to have DPW review the matter as an independent agency concerned w child welfare." "UNLESS" indicates OPTION. Just because he didn't spell it out explicitly in his 2/25/01 note doesn't make it any less of an option...as it was right from the very beginning. Notice the quote marks around "confesses." If Schultz really thought JS was GUILTY GUILTY GUILTY, I doubt he'd have qualified "confesses" with quote marks, he'd have spelled it right out, but that's just the way I look at the world. They'll
      "have the dpw REVIEW the matter." ummmm, review DOES NOT EQUAL investigate. "as an independent agency concerned w child welfare." That's where my idea that they were looking at the DPW more as child care experts and not as child abuse experts, otherwise maybe Schultz might have written it as an independent agency concerned w child ABUSE. Besides, it makes no sense whatsoever that these guys would be looking upon the DPW as an enforcement agency since this note came one day after they had PSU's lawyer spend nearly three hours researching what to do with a report of "SUSPECTED" child abuse and, as Ray has stated numerous times through his own research, if courtney had been doing his job correctly, he'd have told them that the correct enforcement agency to report it to was the Centre County CYS, NOT THE DPW. If they were deciding whether or not to report to the enforecement agency, they'd be talking about whether or not to take it to Centre County CYS, NOT THE DPW!!!! You may claim that is not what Courtney told them to do but I challenge you to prove that Courtney told them to do ANYTHING ELSE. This was also after Schultz's convo with Harmon about the 1998 report (first bullet in the note). Both Schultz and Courtny recalled that it had been reported by someone from PSU, but not them. How about Harmon? He testified at the prelim that he knew nothing about the 2001 incident yet he forked over the 1998 report to Schultz in 2001. Until I see text of Schultz's request for the 1998 file including nothing about the 2001 incident and reporting it to the CYS, I WILL NOT BELIEVE HARMON.

      And about that 95 page "report" of abuse from 1998. Here's yet another example of your perfectly shameless intellectual dishonesty. After reviewing that report, Schultz would have seen that the conclusion of the 1998 incident was NO ABUSE OCCURRED, and that conclusion was made by no less an aurthority than the PA DP-FUCKING-W itself.....and that for an incident that based on what McQueary claimed he actually SAW in 2001 (not what he THOUGHT he saw) must have sounded to Schultz like exactly what went down in 1998 when the PA DP-FUCKING-W itself concluded that NO ABUSE OCCURRED!. Man you are a freaking winner.

      Delete
  16. JJ,
    If the e-mail language is authentic - and that is hardly a certainty given Freeh's history with manipulating evidence - it could be a troubling statement.

    However, you do realize that the Commonwealth is well outside the law in charging Tim and Gary with Failure to Report, 1) because they are not mandated reporters under the law; 2) the minor in question was not in an PSU activity or under the care of Tim and/or Gary; and 3) the incident happened outside the statute of limitations.

    Their attorneys have already attacked it and have requested the charges be dismissed on the grounds above.

    ReplyDelete
  17. Ray,

    I believe arguments 1 and 3 have some merit. A motion to dismiss will be there best way out of this; these are legal arguments that only tangentially deal with the facts.

    If the motion is denied (and emails authenticated), they will have a tough road. For me, it was the email exchange that inflamed me. I wonder if the jury will be of the same mindset.

    Again, had these emails not surfaced, I think TC and GS are not convicted.

    If TC and GS can set forth a coherent argument on the email chain, they should testify. It would be a scathing cross examination of them, but they will be prepped. If they can't explain it away, or cannot withstand the onslaught of a major league cross examination, it will be left to there atorneys. GS has an attorney that possibly could do it. TC would be wise to keep his attorney away from arguing anything. She is abrasive, and has not helped herself by making ridiculous statements, such as comparing the failure to report to a traffic ticket. She may even be right, but you don't say that to the press. A lot of other people got riled up after this comment.

    I d/k too much about spanier's attorney.

    Tim Curley, if you are out there, tell your attorney to tone it down. She is your mouthpiece. Her grandstanding may work in some situations, but you would be the one serving a prison sentence.

    Anyway, thanks Ray for a good piece, and the trial should be interesting.

    ReplyDelete
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