Monday, May 16

Going "off the grid" for a while

Dear Readers,

I will be fishing in the northern reaches of Pennsylvania starting this afternoon and will be "off the grid" until Friday afternoon.

For those of you who have been commenting over the last week or so, I have gone back to briefly address your comments.

I'll be checking back in to the blog on Sunday.


Sunday, May 15

Upon Further Review: June 11th in Pittsburgh

Mark your calendars for SATURDAY, JUNE 11th!

Upon Further Review
hosted by 
Franco Harris



Bradley Bethel, Director, "Unverified: The Film"
Discusses the unverified report by a UNC tutor that triggered the media firestorm leading to the UNC academic scandal.

Ray Blehar, Analyst and blogger at
Breaks down unverified settlement allegations, including 1971 & 1976, that led to more rushes to judgment by the media (and caused PSU to finally defend itself)

Other speakers, topics, and program details to be announced.

Location: Heinz Science Center, Pittsburgh, PA
Date: Saturday, June 11, 2016
Time: 10:30 AM

Friday, May 13

Legal Filing Confims PA Media's Agenda

Today's legal filing by various PA media outlets exposed that the media continues to ignore the facts of the Sandusky case -- because a Penn State scandal sells newspapers.

Ray Blehar

As concerned Penn State Alumni and supporters continue our efforts to inform the government, media, and child protection advocates that the focus on our University, the football program, and its former legendary coach will not fix Pennsylvania's broken child protection system, the media confirmed that it is only interested in writing stories that sell newspapers.

Today, the Harrisburg Patriot-News, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, the Philadelphia Inquirer, Daily News, and (otherwise known as the PA Corruption Network's media arm -- minus the Pittsburgh Tribune Review) filed to have the records of the Sandusky settlements unsealed.

Their argument, as cited in media reports, exposed that they will not accept the fact (in spite of a Judge's ruling and mounds of evidence) that Sandusky's employment at Penn State was NOT a factor in his commission of crimes against children.   

The media should be the last people on the planet to be making any judgments from the evidence. 

A passage from the filing shown below proves my point follows (my emphasis added):

"Public interest in these proceedings is immense....may shed further needed light on a matter that is of serious public concern - sexual abuse of children over decades by an employee of the largest public university in the commonwealth."

Ruling: No Vicarious Liability
In November 2013, U.S. District Judge Court Judge Anita Brody  dismissed a count of “vicarious liability” against the university, ruling that Penn State cannot be held liable for Sandusky’s acts simply because he was an employee at the time.

Obviously, the legal teams of the Corruption Network's Media Arm must have missed that ruling or simply refuse to accept it.   And they refuse to accept the evidence from the Sandusky case that backs it.

Sandusky's crimes continued after he left his employment with the University in 1998 and continued until 2009. There is no evidence of a crime being committed on the PSU campus after 2001 based on the Sandusky Bill of Particulars and the trial verdicts.  Therefore, there is no correlation or causation between his PSU employment, his emeritus status which he retained until 2011, and his commission of crimes against children.

The common thread running through all the confirmed cases of child sexual victimization/abuse from 1996 through 2009 was Sandusky's AND the victim's associations with THE SECOND MILE.  In fact, it's a perfect, positive correlation.

How long can the PA Corruption Network's media arm continue to ignore this?

Media Unfit

While I am all for getting the truth out in the open in the Sandusky scandal, it bears repeating that the media is the very LAST group of people who should be determining the validity of a settlement claim or to evaluate evidence.

This passage of the filing confirms that argument (my emphasis added).

"The information concerning when these acts occurred, the circumstances surrounding them, and the evidence in support of these claims, or lack thereof, must be made public. Allowing these records to be made public will quell rumormongering and unfounded conjecture."

Starting last Thursday night, the media has done nothing but write stories based on uncorroborated information.  The media stoked the rumormongering and conjecture.  Giving the media the information will cause even more of it.

Next, PSU President Barron stated the claims in Judge Glazer's legal filing were uncorroborated.  There was no evidence used in the vetting process.   That was obvious because statements made by claimants after the settlements were inconsistent with their trial testimony.  In other words, the legal team of Feinberg Rozen didn't do the minimum to vet the claims. 

The media also states it must know when these acts occurred and circumstances surrounding them so they can be assessed.  The 1971 story is proof that the media is unable to assess the validity information.  Neither the author nor the media overall revealed the ability to critically think about the allegations made by the phony victim and his collaborator.

1971 Story Not Credible

The allegations made in the 1971 story were only credible to people who had:
1. NO knowledge of the Sandusky trial evidence;
2. NO knowledge of when Sandusky founded THE SECOND MILE charity;
3. NO knowledge of when Sandusky was employed at PSU; and
4. NO understanding of PARENTING.

Point 1: Sandusky was an acquaintance offender.  This is the most important fact ignored by the media.  He befriended his victims. He was not what was known as a "stranger danger" offender.

Point 2: Sandusky formed THE SECOND MILE in 1977.  As such, the phony 1971 victim's claims that Paterno didn't act because of "all the good things" that Sandusky had done doesn't hold water.

Point 3: Given that Sandusky joined the PSU football staff in 1969, was a young assistant in 1971, and had no history of charitable work, the idea that Paterno dismissed the complaint also doesn't hold water.  

Please recall that in 2012, the media believed that Sandusky was forced to retire in 1999 due to the 1998 unfounded child abuse complaint.  So a thirty year assistant gets immediately fired but a two year newbie doesn't.

Consistency? Bueller?  Bueller?

Point 4: No parent, even a foster parent, is going to tell a child who was just raped to call Penn State and talk to Paterno.  When Barron stated the stories were incredulous, this is one of the examples.

Interestingly enough, Ganim's story that broke news of the Sandusky grand jury, that was part of the Pulitzer Prize submission, exhibited an incredible lack of understanding of parenting.  

In that story, Ganim wrote that the mother of a ten-year old boy waited outside the interview room while her son talked to the police -- but then never asked him what he talked to the police about.  

From the article:

"When reached by phone, his mother said she took her son to Penn State police for questioning in 1998 but didn’t listen to the interview. She said she never asked her son what happened."

Her Pulitzer prize pretty much confirms the media has no idea how to evaluate the credibility of stories. 

And the media has no need to in this case.

Allegations neither valid or invalid

In a perfect world, all the rumormongering and conjecture should be quelled by revealing Paragraph 3 of the John Doe A settlement (that states the claims are neither valid nor invalid).

A judge will likely dismiss the media's arguments for disclosure based on that passage alone. 

But it's not a perfect world, and if the media doesn't like the answer, it will continue to pursue the story that it wants.

PSU Cover-Up Not Credible 

The story of a Penn State cover-up and enabling Sandusky's abuse was not credible from DAY ONE.  The evidence didn't support it.

That a full investigation was conducted of the active Defensive Coordinator of the football team in 1998, but was circumvented in 2001 (when Sandusky was retired), for the purpose of avoiding bad publicity is completely illogical.

The evidence also revealed that PSU reported Sandusky outside the University to every authority in 1998 and reported him, at a minimum, outside the University to THE SECOND MILE in 2001. Those facts certainly don't support a Penn State cover-up.

The report of the 2001 incident stopped at THE SECOND MILE and that's where the cover-up occurred.

However, the media knew that there was no BIG STORY  in writing about a cover-up by a charity that was unknown to most people outside of Pennsylvania. 

Public Interest
The Sandusky scandal coverage should have informed the public about the dangers of acquaintance offenders and how to recognize the signs of possible victimization.  Priests, teachers, youth sports, and youth service organization members are all individuals who have access children and victimize them through gaining the trust of their families.  

The person need not be famous or be associated with a top flight college football program to commit acts of child sexual victimization.  All they need is access to the child.

It didn't make a difference that Jerry Sandusky was the defensive coordinator at Penn State in State College or if he was the offensive coordinator at Texas A&M in College Station.  It wasn't his job.  It wasn't the town.  It was his role (and lack of rules) at THE SECOND MILE that provided him with access to children.

The media knows that -- and today's legal filing proves that the media has no interest in telling that story.

Wednesday, May 11

Mission Impossible: Shaming Sally Jenkins

After reading Jenkin's article that Penn State needs to own up for Sandusky, I was so incensed by the errors and the dubious sourcing that I emailed Sally Jenkins some "Sandusky facts" last night.  She didn't respond to the email. 

This morning, l provided her with  my email to Ron Cook to provide additional information.  Still no response.

I didn't find that surprising because in 2012, on two separate occasions I emailed Jenkins detailing the failures of PA DPW and CYS in the Sandusky case AND other cases.  She didn't respond.  

Based on her unwillingness to acknowledge the failures of anyone other than Penn State and for accusing Penn Staters of "blame shifting" when she learned of the failures of child protective services,  I must conclude that Sally Jenkins is a callous individual who would rather let children be abused, raped, tortured, and die, than admit she was/is wrong.

Last night's message follows.
Note: I wrote it from memory, thus I got confused over who attorney Tom Kline represented, thinking he represented Victims 5 and 10.  He represented Victim 5 only.  BTW, the (money grubbing) lawyer for Victim 10 was Joel Feller.

----- Forwarded Message -----
From: Ray Blehar <>
To: "" <> 
Sent: Tuesday, May 10, 2016 6:17 PM
Subject: Sandusky facts

1. Sandusky wasn't convicted of a rape occurring in the showers at PSU.  Simply didn't happen.  Check the trial verdicts.  Not a single allegation by a victim that they were raped in the shower either.  Check the trial transcripts.

2. The 1971 story a complete fabrication to anyone at all familiar with how Sandusky committed his crimes.  Sandusky selected pre-teen boys whom he befriended and groomed them into becoming compliant victims.  By age 15, they had "aged out" of his preferred age group.  Sara Ganim's story of Sandusky picking up a 15 (or 17) year old hitch-hiker doesn't fit the profile.  Moreover, the concept of compliant victimization means there are not forcible attacks on victims.

3. Lawyer Tom Kline's client, Victim 5, gave three different YEARS for the incident at Penn State.  1998 (age 10), 2000 (age 11), and 2001 (age 13).  In his testimony, he stated he didn't know what an erection was.  Which year do you believe it happened?  Kline chose 2001 because he knew it would result in a larger payout.

4. Kline (sic) also represented Victim 10.  Victim 10 testified to coming into contact with Sandusky on five occasions and being inappropriately touched 3 times.  When Victim 10 was interviewed after his settlement, he stated he was like a family member of the Sandusky's.   Kline (sic) stated he was molested dozens of times over 3 years.

5. PA prosecutor Bruce Castor just announced that there is no corroborating evidence that coaches witnessed Sandusky's inappropriate behavior with children in the PSU locker rooms.

6. In 2013, the lead prosecutor in the Sandusky case, Frank Fina, stated he found NO EVIDENCE that Paterno was involved in a cover-up.

That's correct, the lead prosecutor refuted the findings of the Freeh Report about Joe Paterno.  And just recently, the PA AG decided not to appeal the DROPPED charges against Spanier, Curley, and Schultz.

It is unfortunate that you feel you can write a story about a case in 2013 (sic), not spend one iota of time on it since that time, then make a couple phone calls to very questionable sources, and think you have the basis for a story.

The salient facts of the Sandusky case are these...

In 2001, Penn State alerted the charity to Sandusky's behavior with a child in the shower in 2001.  The charity, who was responsible for the protection of the children in its care, did nothing.

Most every youth charity has rules in place to prevent one-on-one unsupervised contact between adults and children.  Sandusky's did not.

But that incident should never have happened.

The sad fact here is that child protection case workers, who knew of numerous signs that Sandusky had abused children in 1998, let him go free to continue to pluck children out of his charity.

What should have been stopped in 1998 was not.  And that wasn't Penn State's fault.  And that's not debatable.

Fast forward to 2014.

Jarrod Tutko, Jr. was found dead in a Harrisburg, PA row home -- not far from where Sara Ganim used to write for the Patriot News.

Jarrod was ten years old and weighed 19 pounds at his death. His room was covered in feces.  PA child protection case workers had been to the Tutko home over a half dozen times to investigate abuse complaints.  Like the 1998 case with Sandusky, they turned a blind eye to the abuse.

In four of every ten cases of reported child abuse in Pennsylvania where a caseworker visits a family, the child will suffer further abuse at the hands of the perpetrator.

But Penn State needs to face the up the facts??    Ha!   I think we both know who knows the facts and who doesn't.

The abuse is continuing as I write this because a high profile story about child abuse,  that could have and should have been used to reform the child welfare system in Pennsylvania, demand better training of caseworkers, and demand better oversight of child abuse investigations instead turned into a story about a famous football coach.

I hope you're proud of what you are doing.

Raymond M. Blehar

CNN Feedback: Sara Ganim published known falsehood

Initial Comment:  

Sara Ganim's recent story about a 1971 victim contained known falsehood

Additional Comments:

Sara Ganim’s latest column regarding an alleged 1971 child sex abuse incident that was allegedly reported to Joe Paterno should serve as additional proof that Ganim (and the Patriot News) never cared about reporting the facts of the Sandusky scandal.

Ganim won a Pulitzer Prize for LOCAL (not investigative) about the “Penn State Scandal.”  Evidence that has come to light in the subsequent legal proceedings and in media reports reveal that her Pulitzer winning articles contained known falsehoods, omitted critical information, and fabricated other information in order to create the narrative.

Her recent article is more of the same.

She covered scandal over a year and knew that Sandusky was an acquaintance offender who befriended pre-teen boys and groomed them for victimization.    As such, she had to also know that her story of Sandusky picking up a 15 year old hitchhiker, plying him with drugs and alcohol, and forcibly raping was not consistent with Sandusky’s modus operandi.

Ganim also had to know her corroborating witness was not a reliable source, as he was featured in the movie Happy Valley conducting a pathetic one-man protest at the Paterno statue and has a well-known history of irrational behavior.  

She knew her story was false but she (and now CNN) decided that perpetuating her false narrative of a “Penn State Scandal” and grabbing headlines and TV appearances trumped the truth (and ethical journalism). 

After four years, Penn State finally pushed back and issued a statement denouncing the sensational (false) stories that continue to batter our community.    That’s not enough.

CNN should retract this story and issue a public apology to Penn State.

Email to Ron Cook: Sportswriters are out of their league

This summary is not available. Please click here to view the post.

Tuesday, May 10

PSU Claim Payment (and other) Malfeasance

The evidence timeline reveals that a small group of trustees, led by Ira Lubert, used the settlement process as part of the costly scheme to convict PSU in the court of public opinion.


Ray Blehar

There is a lot of confusion over the latest Penn State University Board of Trustees (PSU BOT) insurance debacle and misdirected anger at PSU's insurer (the Pennsylvania Manufacturer's Insurance Company) about the release of uncorroborated claimant information.  

Make no mistake, the people at fault for this debacle are former PSU President Rodney Erickson and the PSU BOT's Legal and Compliance Committee.  However, the settlement scheme was just one cog in the wheel of an orchestrated effort to convict PSU in the court of public opinion.

The timeline, as usual, tells the story.

Rolling Out the Red Carpet For Lawsuits

After (then) PSU President Graham Spanier attempted to defend the University from the baseless allegations of a failure to report Sandusky, he was removed and the BOT began a series of actions to convince the public of the culpability of PSU officials in the Sandusky matter.

Nov. 4, 2011:  Sandusky charges were announced.

Nov. 9, 2011:  The PSU BOT announced removal of Spanier and Paterno, leading public to believe PSU officials were guilty of a cover-up.  No vote was held prior to announcement of their removals.

Nov 11, 2011: Then interim (puppet) President Rodney Erickson's 5-Point Promise impled that PSU had a culture that failed to do the right thing and he committed to providing support to the victims.

Awareness of "Hole" of Coverage
Upon receiving the first lawsuit, PSU learns that the policies in effect during the time period when most of the (then) alleged abuse occurred do not cover "abuse and molestation"

Nov. 30th, 2011, John Doe A filed a civil lawsuit against The Second Mile and Penn State for his alleged abuse suffered from 1992 through 1996.

Jan. 6, 2012:  PSU filed a claim with PMA for coverage under its comprehensive and commercial general liability (CGL) policy.

Jan 30, 2012:  PMA issued a reservation of rights letter denying coverage under the CGL policy because of its "abuse and molestation" exclusion in effect after 1992.  In addition, PSU policies have "intentional acts" exclusions and prohibit punitive damages.

Attempt to Side-step "Hole" In Coverage

PSU will file bodily injury claims to circumvent abuse and molestation exclusion.

Jan 31, 2012:  The President Rodney Erickson's personal notes, dated January 30,  indicated a plan to submit abuse claims as bodily injuries and utilize Hershey Medical Center to record medical expenses against the claims.

Feb 15. 2012:  PSU filed a lawsuit against PMA seeking payment of the (bodily injury) claims for John Doe A.

Freeh Report, NCAA, and Lawsuits

With the understanding that intentional acts are not covered under its insurance policy, a small group of trustees embrace the allegations in the Freeh Report that place blame on PSU officials.  In the following ten days, this group negotiates a set of sanctions and harsh financial penalties from the NCAA.  This action is a continuation of the small group's goal of convincing the public of the culpability of Paterno, Spanier, and others for not preventing Sandusky's abuse.

July 12, 2012: The Freeh Report was issued claiming PSU officials were aware of Sandusky's sexual abuse of children and concealed the abuse.  

July 12, 2012:  PSU officials Karen Peetz, Rodney Erickson, and Kenneth Frazier publicly praised the Freeh Report as comprehensive and thorough, admonish Paterno, Curley, Schultz, and Spanier for their failure to protect children, and pledged to reform PSU by following the report's recommendations.

July 23, 2012:  The President Erickson signed a Consent Decree with the NCAA and agreed to pay $60 million in fines for sexual abuse prevention and victim programs.  The Consent Decree's language quotes from the Freeh Report.  Action was approved by PSU BOT Executive Committee.

July/Aug 2012:  Sandusky victims from trial and elsewhere file lawsuits against PSU.

Some Settlements Approved 

Despite knowing that it is not insured for abuse and molestation claims from 1992 to 2004, the University begins settlements with trial victims who were abused during that time frame.  Erickson understands that some of these claims will not be covered and infers that they will be paid from internal loan interest (residing in the Institutional Support Budget).  While Erickson stated that Penn State wanted a "just outcome for the victims," the underlying motive for the settlements was as a demonstration of the University's culpability for Sandusky's abuse.

Sep 19, 2012:  In a Bloomberg interview, then President Erickson stated that settlement money would come from insurance and internal loan (interest).

Sep 20, 2012:  PSU hired Feinberg Rozen to moderate and settle claims.

Lubert: Board Member
at PSU & Second Mile
Oct 26, 2012:  Subcommittee on Legal and Compliance, then chaired by current BOT Vice-Chair Ira Lubert, approved settlement actions in Sandusky related matters.  Lubert was formerly a regional director at The Second Mile charity.

July 12, 2013:  Subcommittee on Legal and Compliance propose approval of claims.  Committee members included: Ira Lubert (chair); Kenneth Frazier (vice chair), Keith Masser (ex officio), Kathleen Casey, Richard Dandrea, Keith Eckel, George Greig, and Adam Taliaferro.  Approved by PSU BOT Executive Committee.

Oct 28, 2013:  26 of 31 claims settled for the amount of $59.7 million.  
3 claims were denied (D.F. claim among them) and 3 claims agreed to in principal (Victim 6 and Victim 9).  The settlement agreements contained a provision that the claimants cannot file additional lawsuits against The Second Mile.

More Lawsuits and "Freeh" Money

Unable to come to terms with Penn State, Victims 6 and 9 use discovery of the Freeh Source materials to extract additional money from the University.

Nov 22, 2013: After being unable to reach agreement, Victim 9 files a lawsuit relying heavily on information from the Freeh Report to prove negligence on the part of Penn State.

Mar 18, 2014: After being unable to reach an agreement, Victim 6's legal team is awarded discovery of some of the Freeh Source materials.

Sep 3,  2014:  Victim D.F. sues PSU, also citing Freeh Report to prove negligence.

Dec. 5, 2014:  Victim X sues PSU, claiming abuse in 1988, argues his case would have been within the statute of limitations if not for PSU's failure to report in 2001.

Jan 1, 2015:  Victim 9 legal team awarded discovery of Freeh Source materials.  PSU was required to turn over all materials d by May 29, 2015

Apr 12, 2015:  By an 18-6 vote,  the BOT approves a substantial and undisclosed settlement for Victim 9 (estimated at between $15 - $20 million) and for five other claimants.  Total payment of approximately $33.2 million.

Judge Slams Door on Reimbursements

In an outcome that should have been a surprise to no one, Judge Glazer ruled that PSU's case for reimbursement for the claims from between 1992 and 2004 were essentially denied.   In his ruling, he frequently referenced the Freeh Report to justify that PSU was negligent, especially noting the timeframe from 1998 to 2001. Moreover, PSU attempted to refute the Freeh Report findings that PSU officials knew about Sandusky's behavior, but the arguments were refused by the Judge due to - among other things -- the University's acceptance of fines and sanctions from the NCAA. 

32 claims were paid by PSU for a grand total of $92.8 million.

What we know:

1.  PSU is not entitled to reimbursement for the claims between 1992 and 2004, which include at least eight victims: Matt Sandusky, Victim #2, John Doe A, Victim #3, Victim #4, Victim #5, Victim #7, and Victim #10.  Estimated Loss:  $12 million.

2.  PSU can receive $3 million aggregate limit for three claims paid from 2005 and 2006.  This coverage would include the exorbitant ($20 million) claim paid to Victim 9, a payment to Victim 1, and one other payment.  Estimated Loss: $21 million.

3.  PSU can receive full coverage for three claims prior to 1992. The ruling notes claims from 1976, 1987, and 1988. Estimated Coverage: $6 million.

What we don't know:

How many of the eighteen remaining claims fell within the 1992 to 2004 time frame that is not covered and how many occurred prior to 1992 and are fully covered.

The Bottom Line
The Committee on Legal and Compliance knowingly made a decisions to pay out at least $32 million that they (and Erickson) knew would not be covered by insurance.  

In news that surprised no one who closely followed this fiasco, the University went on record to admit that the Committee and Feinberg Rozen did not require evidence to support the allegations made in the claims.  At this point, we now know what Eric Barron meant in his video stating that some people don't believe Paterno's statue should be returned because of what they know.

Who are they? Lubert, Frazier, Peetz, Dambly, Eckel, Casey, and Dandrea.  And they are all trustees who stood by the Freeh Report and did everything possible to ensure that it never got reviewed.

It is highly probable that if the Judge hadn't released the uncorroborated information about reports to Paterno in his ruling, one or some of these trustees would have leaked the information to the press -- on or about the time the alumni-elected trustees were going to finally toss the Freeh Report on the ash heap of history.

The settlements by this cabal of trustees and their efforts to protect the false and harmful narrative that was put forth by the Attorney General, the Freeh Report, and the NCAA were all part of an ongoing effort to convict Paterno, Spanier, Curley, and Schultz in the court of public opinion.

The purposeful damage done to the University by their actions is immeasurable and should qualify as malfeasance.