Wednesday, February 13

Sue Paterno: One woman speaks. What about the rest?

Sue Paterno did a remarkable job in the Katie Couric interview, and when asked, she stated she was not aware of the 1998 incident.  She was not asked what she knew of the 2001 incident. What about the rest of the wives and mothers of the key players?

Ray Blehar

Many have asked how the State College community, PSU officials, and others could not have known about Jerry Sandusky.  Sue Paterno was among the many who didn't know and said she had no idea about the 1998 incident or had any inkling of Sandusky's criminal behavior until 2011, when she read the grand jury presentment. 

Katie didn't ask Sue about 2001, so I reached out to a family member who said it was unlikely Joe would have told Sue because he was very careful about concluding anything about people until the facts were known.  In addition, Joe flew to Pittsburgh within one hour of being told by McQueary, then consulted with Curley and Schultz the next morning when he got home.  At that point or shortly after Schultz consulted with Wendell Courtney, Joe would have been told that the information needed to be held confidentially.

About Mothers

Sue is a mother of five and a grandmother of seventeen children.  As a mother and grandmother, if she had known about Jerry Sandusky's behavior, I have no doubt that she would not have stayed silent.  As one person said at the King of Prussia event, "If Sue had known, she would have grabbed a pair of scissors from the kitchen drawer and went after Sandusky herself."

I believe that instinct to protect children is ingrained in most women and if any women involved in this scandal had known that Sandusky was abusing children they would have not stayed silent.

First, they would not have let their children near Sandusky.  Sue Paterno stated she let her children play in the pool with Sandusky on bowl trips.  It has been reported that Tim Curley's son also interacted with Sandusky after 2001.

Also, if they knew of Sandusky's abuse, they would have likely gone to authorities.  None did.

About Married People

I was married for 22 years and can tell you that most married men - at some point - talk to their wives.  Sometimes that talking can even evolve into a conversation.

Depending on the person of course, how open they might be with things will differ. But for the most part, you can find out a lot of good information by talking to the wife - as Katie Couric did with Sue Paterno.

In this case, there are a number of wives who may or may not have been told about the 1998 and/or 2001 incidents. Given the pending court cases, few of these women were free to talk.

I only spoke to one - Dr. Chambers and  I was able to talk to a husband or two and some family members. John Ziegler spoke with Dottie Sandusky.  As for the rest, I'll address the probabilities of their knowledge of the cases.

Dottie Sandusky

Dottie and Jerry Sandusky got married in September 1966, therefore they have been married over 46 years.  Many people have asked how could she not have known?   John Ziegler interviewed Dottie, who still maintains her husband is innocent of his crimes.

I have no personal knowledge of Dottie, however I believe this passage from "Child Molesters: A Behavioral  Guide" is valuable to understand that she fits the profile of a wife of a pedophile.

When they do marry, pedophiles often marry either a strong, domineering woman or a weak, passive woman-child. In any case they will marry a woman who does not have high sexual expectations or needs. A woman married to a pedophile may not realize her husband is a pedophile, but she does know he has a “problem” – a sexual-performance problem. Because she may blame herself for this problem and because of the private nature of people’s sex lives, most wives will usually not reveal this information to an 

Information on the public record states Dottie was known as "Sarge" -- in other words, Sandusky selected a strong domineering woman who would be the perfect compliment to his childlike, goofy behavior.

Dottie testified that early in their marriage they tried to have children, but it didn't work out, so they became adoptive parents.  Interestingly enough, neither the prosecution or the defense inquired about the sexual relationship between Jerry and Dottie -- which would seem to be highly relevant in a case where someone is accused of being a pedophile.

Dottie and her other five children stood by Jerry at trial.  Matt Sandusky was originally supportive of Jerry but then turned and admitted he had been abused.  Dottie attributed Matt's accusations of abuse to dishonesty and bi-polar disorder.  She stated she never saw Jerry abuse a child and does not believe he is guilty.

Dr. Alycia Chambers

Dr. Chambers appears to be one of the few people who recognized what Sandusky was.  The others were her colleagues at the practice in which she worked (and perhaps Jerry Lauro and John Miller -- but they're not women).   According to a telephone interview I conducted with Dr. Chambers on October 12, 2012, she did the right thing - to an extent - and wrote a report on Sandusky's behavior and submitted it to DPW, CYS, and the University Park Police for the 1998 investigation.  During the interview, Dr. Chambers asked, "how did that other guy get in there?"  Meaning, how did Seasock end up interviewing Victim 6.  She went on to lament that she had been seeing Victim 6 for a period of time and for the DPW and CYS officials to send the child to a stranger - and a man - to discuss possible sexual abuse was a mistake.

She was 100% correct in her assessment.

However, if you want to discuss someone who "should have done more," perhaps Dr. Chambers might be that person.  Chambers knew that Sandusky's behavior fit the description of grooming. She also knew that the child was in The Second Mile and of Sandusky's association with that organization.

Therefore, why didn't Chambers "do more" after learning Sandusky was cleared?   I'm not suggesting that she go public or demand that the investigation be re-opened, but why not get "clearance" from the mother to release her report in a confidential manner to officials at The Second Mile, so that they could better monitor Sandusky's activities with children.

Sandra Spanier

I can state with near certainty that Sandra Spanier had no idea about 1998 because her husband, Graham, had no recollection of the incident.  And Dr. Spanier has a very good memory.

Dr. Spanier told Freeh's group, upon viewing the e-mails from 1998, that he had a vague recollection of the first and no recollection of the last.  The first e-mail was very general and didn't even mention Sandusky's name.

Graham Spanier did not see the second 1998 e-mail because he was out of the country when he received it and then he deleted it without reading it upon his return.  It was one e-mail in a group of several hundred that he would have reviewed upon return and, as was his practice, he would read the top e-mail in the chain and delete those of the same subject below it in the chronology.  At the time of the 1998 investigation, PSU was negotiatiing Sandusky's retirement, thus Spanier likely read the top e-mail about the retirement negotiations an deleted all others referencing Jerry Sandusky.

it is also highly unlikely that Graham informed her of the 2001incident.  Through this investigation, I learned that Spanier often worked 15 hours days and that he was not one to bring "work" home from the office.  Spanier's own recollection of the 2001 event is mostly of the 15 minute meeting with Tim and Gary, where he learned of the incident, was told it was "horsing around", and wasn't told the identity of the witness. 

Not a lot to discuss with his wife, even if he chose to do so and probably not the highlight of his day.

Karen Schultz

If I had to pick among the wives of the PSU officials who may have known about 1998, it would be Karen Schultz.   Her husband, Gary, received the reports about the investigation directly from police chief, Tom Harmon and Schultz knew more details, thus he had more to tell if he so chose.

However, Schultz's behavior in keeping the 1998 investigation's details confidential was evident in the e-mails he wrote to Curley -- and eventually Spanier (although Spanier never read it).  It is highly probable that Harmon advised Schultz that the investigation was a confidential matter at the outset.  Therefore, the probability is very low that he would tell his wife about something that could be potentially damaging to Jerry Sandusky -- who was a highly respected coach and pillar of the community (or at least appeared so).

Similarly, Schultz's handwritten note of 2/12/2001 (Exhibit 5C) is marked "Confidential."  Schultz consulted with then-PSU Counsel Wendell Courtney the very day he was informed of the incident.  It is highly probable that Courtney advised Schultz of the law about reporting and confidentiality.  And again, Sandusky remained a highly respected, pillar of the community, so it is unlikely that Schultz would have disclosed the investigation to his wife.

Linette Courtney

I have no reservations when I say Linette Courtney did not know about the 1998 incident.  That's because Wendell Courtney was unaware of that incident, as noted on the Errata Sheet to the Freeh Report:

"Corrected Text:  Courtney e-mails Schultz a newspaper story about the Sandusky charges and states:  "I was never aware that "Penn State police investigated inappropriate touching in a shower' in 1998."

This is not an insignificant point in terms of the confidentiality of the 1998 investigation and that Gary Schultz complied fully with the law in not disclosing the details of the investigation (Pa. 055 Section 3490.91).   
After the 1998 investigation was underway, Schultz could not disclose the information -- even to the PSU General Counsel. 

As for 2001, Courtney was informed of the alleged abuse incident on February 11, 2001, however, he was bound by attorney-client privilege from disclosing the information.  And again, to release unsubstantiated allegations against a pillar of the community, Sandusky, would not only have been inappropriate, but as Courtney well knew, could subject him to a defamation lawsuit.
One final set of corroborating evidence is that Linette Courtney served on the Corporate/State Board of Directors for The Second Mile from 2005 to 2008.  Most assuredly, had she known that Sandusky was involved in any abuse situation, she would not have volunteered to be a Director for The Second Mile Board.

Joan Coble

Joan was Gary's administrative assistant who was copied on one e-mail (Exhibit 5F, Subject: Confidential) between Tim Curley and Gary Schultz. The e-mail did not mention any names, nor did it contain any details about the investigation.

Melinda Curley

Melinda Curley would not have known the details about 1998. As evidenced by the e-mails, Schultz withheld the details of the investigation from Curley.  Curley got an initial heads up from Schultz of which we don't know the content, however, we can conclude it didn't make a great impression on Curley.  He didn't remember anything about 1998 in 2011.  Tim Curley got one update - which contained minimal information - during the investigation and was informed that it closed with no criminal charges. 

Some mention of the 2001 investigation may have been made by Tim to Melinda.  Curley was called to Paterno's house on a Sunday morning, which would be unusual.  When he returned, it is highly likely his wife asked him what the meeting was about and Curley may have given her a vague notion about some issue with a coach.  However, based on the vague description given to Paterno by McQueary, it is highly unlikely that he told Melinda that Sandusky was engaged in a sex act with a child.

Judith Dranov

Dr. Dranov was called to the McQueary home at approximately 9PM on a Friday night, February 9, 2001 and stayed there until about 11PM that night.  Upon arriving home, if Mrs. Dranov was still awake, it is likely she asked Dr. Dranov what he was doing at the McQueary's.  Given the business relationship between the two men, Dranov could have easily said it was a business discussion.  Or he could have told the truth and said the Mike witnessed something in the showers, but couldn't really say what he saw because it was out of his view.  Because Dranov's testimony clearly states that Mike couldn't articulate what he saw to him, it is likely that he gave his wife the same description of the event.  

Anne McQueary

Mike McQueary admitted during trial testimony that he told his family members about the incident.  On page 213 of the trial transcript, it states: "My family over time came to know what I had witnessed -- but again I'm saying over time." 

McQueary's family knew (over time) he witnessed an "extremely sexual" act between Sandusky and a young boy and none of them -- not even Anne McQueary, thought they should do something (like report it) to prevent Sandusky from committing other crimes like the one Mike allegedly described?     Mike said no one at PSU told him to keep it quiet, so was there a "family pact" to keep this secret?

This is an extremely troubling discovery.  Why would the McQueary family protect a pedophile?

Barbara McQueary

Again, Mike McQueary admitted at the trial that he had told his girlfriend at the time about the details. It is not clear if his current (now estranged) wife was his girlfriend in 2001, however, his statement about telling his family likely covers his wife.  Therefore, his wife was informed, at some point, that Mike witnessed Sandusky engaged in an extremely sexual act with a child, but didn't inform anyone or go to the authorities.

Perhaps the bond between husband, wife, and the family prevented the women (and the men) that knew from coming forward. 

Who Else?

While McQueary testified that he didn't tell the guys in the building or his buddies about what he observed, we know that testimony is false.

McQueary told an undisclosed number of people in an internet chat room.  And the Freeh Report footnote on page 88 states he told an equipment manager about the incident.

So the group that was told about the 2001 incident is larger than we know, but to get to the bottom of what McQueary said, it is likely you'd have to find someone with no attachment or bond to McQueary or any of the other witnesses/individuals involved.

And I believe the best source to provide that information is noted on page 55 of "Child Molesters: A Behavioral Guide."

Find an ex-wife or an ex-girlfriend.


  1. Comment from Facebook on this story:

    In one of my favorite Arthur Conan Doyle Sherlock Holmes stories, "Silver Blaze," which involves the disappearance of a race horse (Silver Blaze) from his stable, Holmes points the detective from Scotland Yard to the detail of "the curious incident of the dog in the night-time." When the detective observes that the dog didn't do anything when the horse disappeared from the stable in the night-time, Holmes says "That was the curious incident." The person who took the horse was not a stranger so the dog did not react.

    This is amazingly similar to the point you raise. Because there was no reason for the women to be on alert, there was no alert. "That was the curious incident."

  2. Replies
    1. I don't see Kitty Genovese for one. Anyone else missed?

    2. Agree. Not an all inclusive list. Kitty is not there, nor is Mrs. Thomas Harmon.

      Kind of kept the list focused on key players in 1998 and 2001 and who would have information that could be used for the trials of Curley, Schultz, and Spanier.

      And as I allude to at the end, there are some "unknown" women out there who may have some revealing information.

  3. I've tried sending you messages, does that not work?

    1. Don't worry about me. I have all the information I need.

  4. It's obvious you don't , but okay.

  5. Did you stop to consider the fact that McQueary was involved w the AG's office for years before the story broke, trying to do something to permanently get this resolved? It might not have been the heroic, passionate response people would have liked to see, but it was the thoughtful, logical way to go about it. McQueary knew that there had been an incident in '98, nothing had happened; he reported what he saw in 2002; again, nothing happened(!); there was some sort of investigation into it, and the DA actually DISAPPEARED. Then when they started investigating it further McQueary was the leading force behind it - the key witness. Give the guy some f'ing credit, idiot.

    1. Really? Mike knew about 1998? And so in 2001 when he saw that he did nothing?

      DA disappeared in 2005. Not relevant to 2001.

      McQueary was not the leading force behind this investigation.

      What fantasy world are you living in?