The jury’s impossible verdict that Spanier supervised and endangered an unknown child will be overturned on appeal and the fight will continue
Over the last week pieces of the truth were revealed, however the false narrative of a Penn State cover-up by the Harrisburg Patriot news and national media were too pervasive for a Dauphin County jury to completely exonerate former PSU President Dr. Graham Spanier.
The jury reached a guilty verdict that did not comport with the elements of the Endangering the Welfare of Children (EWOC) statute. Specifically, they found that Dr. Spanier was responsible for the welfare of a child who has yet to be identified.
The child, known as Victim 2, could not possibly be tied to being supervised by anyone other than Jerry Sandusky because (allegedly) he is unknown.
They tendered the verdicts around 4:00 PM – likely choosing their weekend plans over reaching the legally correct verdict.
The jury acquitted Dr. Spanier of a second endangerment charge and criminal conspiracy.
Spanier’s legal team took the verdict in stride, confident that they would win on appeal.
In a related story, a Philadelphia judge just ruled that there was prosecutorial misconduct and granted a new trial in the EWOC case against Monsignor William Lynn of the Philadelphia Roman Catholic diocese. Monsignor Lynn was wrongly convicted and also was not directly supervising children.
Blowing Up the Freeh Report
The plea deals, trials verdicts, and testimony have blown huge holes in the findings of the investigation conducted by Louis Freeh.
First, even though former PSU administrators Timothy Curley and Gary Schultz pleaded to misdemeanor EWOC and that Spanier was found guilty of the same, the Freeh Report’s finding of a “total and consistent…disregard for the safety and welfare” of children has been blown out of the water.
The misdemeanor count means there was no consistent course of conduct that endangered children.
In addition, Freeh’s hyperbolic conclusion that Joe Paterno and the others “failed to protect against a child sexual predator harming children for over a decade” also has been proven false by the court.
Next, the Commonwealth produced no witnesses and no evidence that the avoidance of bad publicity had any bearing on the decisions made in 2001. The court also showed no evidence that the decisions were made due to a “culture of reverence for the football program.”
As reported by notpsu.blogspot.com yesterday, Freeh’s conclusion that football Coach Joe Paterno intervened and changed the plan of action in the 2001 matter has also been proven untrue.
Freeh’s conclusions that cited publicity, football, and Paterno were the underlying factors in the 2001 decisions were the foundational elements for the National Collegiate Athletic Association’s charge that there was a lack of institutional integrity at Penn State and subsequent penalties.
There is now no legal basis for those conclusions and the trial results should bolster Dr. Spanier’s defamation case against the former FBI Director.
In conclusion, the Commonwealth’s Conspiracy of Silence case against former PSU officials was officially debunked by the acquittal on the lone remaining conspiracy count.
The trial testimony also proved PSU officials were not silent and reported the incident outside the University.
While Dr. Spanier suffered a minor defeat today in court, he showed the heart of a lion by maintaining his innocence and standing up to those in the Attorney General’s office who routinely trample the rights of the citizenry.
Thank you, Dr. Spanier.
We will fight on.