Thursday, January 4

No Coincidence, Part 1 - Corbett's Feud With Spanier

The Washington Post's recent story dismissed the theory that Tom Corbett's feud with Graham Spanier and that The Second Mile charity influenced the Sandusky investigation....but the evidence shows otherwise.

Ray Blehar

January 4, 2018, 8:03 PM, EST, Updated January 5, 2018, 4:08PM

The Washington Post's story on the Sandusky scandal covered a lot of ground and exposed many of the highly questionable decisions of the Penn State University Board of Trustees (PSU BOT) in the aftermath of the criminal trial and the Freeh Report.

One area it did not place much focus on was the unnecessarily protracted 3-year investigation that eventually brought Jerry Sandusky to justice -- and the evidence indicating that Governor Tom Corbett's feud with Spanier revived an investigation that was first sand-bagged by the Pennsylvania State Police (PSP) and then was sent to die a slow, secret death in Pennsylvania's grand jury system.

The Post, much like the rest of the media, seemingly relied on a single data point to label that scenario as "outlandish."   To be clear, reporter Will Hobson summarized the Moulton Report as follows:

"The inquiry concluded politics played no role in the Sandusky investigation..." 

However, that statement isn't accurate.  Special Deputy AG Geoffrey Moulton actually said the investigation:

 "revealed no direct evidence that electoral politics influenced any important decision made in the Sandusky investigation."

The Moulton Report is replete with circumstantial evidence that shows the investigation was going nowhere until Corbett's feud with Spanier and that the "release of the hounds" occurred right after his election.


ESPN's Don Van Natta, a very well respected Pulitzer prize winning journalist wrote about the fact that Corbett was slow to arrest Sandusky.

Reasons for initial delays in the Sandusky investigation remain head-scratchers.
From ESPN:

As Pennsylvania's attorney general, he (Corbett) investigated Sandusky for nearly two years but failed to make an arrest. But then, as governor, he blamed the university's leaders for not doing more. One was Paterno, who some board members believed wielded too much power. The other was university president Graham B. Spanier, a 16-year veteran and Corbett rival who had become a vocal opponent of the governor's efforts to slash higher education funding.

The first piece of circumstantial evidence that politics played a role in the Sandusky case was the anonymous email tip suggesting that Centre County District Attorney Stacy Parks Miller contact Mike McQueary.

That email allegedly just happened to show up one day after Corbett had won the 2010 governor's race (on November 3, 2010).

In the real world, coincidences like that can form the basis for criminal charges.

For example, a person who never invested in aerospace stocks decides all of the sudden to buy a large amount of Boeing stock.  The next day, Boeing announces a multi-million dollar contract.  That coincidence becomes rather unlucky for the purchaser if there is an insider trading investigation.

The timing of the email tip on McQueary has gotten little media attention.

That it came from someone (later identified as Christopher Houser) who had been complaining for years (on football message boards and in chat rooms)  that Paterno should be removed as head coach didn't garner much attention either.  The Moulton Report confirmed the PA OAG tracked down individuals who were chatting about Sandusky on football message boards in October 2010.

Again, was the tip from Houser just a coincidence or was Houser found for a specific purpose?

Paterno's Removal

Former PSU BOT chairman John Surma became a member of the Board in 2007 and constantly approached Spanier about removing Paterno as head football coach.  Spanier rebuffed Surma's proposals, telling the former CEO of US Steel that Paterno would eventually retire and a replacement would be named.

When the scandal broke, Corbett worked the phones with Surma.

After the fateful board meeting of November 9, 2011,  Corbett was overheard by current PSU Board of Trustees member Bob Capretto bragging about getting Paterno fired.

ESPN's Van Natta wrote:

Capretto says he asked Corbett, "Who told the board to fire Joe and fire Spanier?"
"And the governor said, 'I told them to do it,'" Capretto says. "He was proud of it. I told him, 'You don't realize what you have created here. The damage to Penn State is enormous.'"
Later in 2013, after Corbett filed a lawsuit against the NCAA, he told a group of former PSU football players that his statement at the November 9, 2011 trustee meeting, "remember that boy in the shower," was directed toward the Board's decision to fire Spanier.

Corbett's Feud With Spanier

Corbett's initial beef with Spanier came about in October 2010, when the former Governor saw the former University president hosting his gubernatorial opponent, Dan Onorato, at a PSU home game.

Van Natta wrote:

"Spanier, meanwhile, began hearing from board members during the 2010 football season that Corbett was furious with him for appearing to openly favor his opponent. Not long after Corbett saw Onorato and Spanier, a Democrat, chatting in Spanier's luxury suite at Beaver Stadium, concerned officials on Penn State's government affairs staff asked Spanier to work harder to cultivate Corbett. Spanier told colleagues he was perplexed by Corbett's reaction, saying Onorato had not been his guest and, besides, he had gone out of his way not to play favorites."

The impetuous Corbett exclaimed that if he was elected governor he would have Spanier fired -- and he did it while standing in the Nittany Lion Club Suite in front of PSU Board members.

Spanier Firmly in OAG's Cross-Hairs After Budget Battle 

Corbett escalated the feud against Spanier by slashing education funding across the state in March 2011.   Spanier became a very vocal opponent and, at a press conference, stated that "Abraham Lincoln is weeping" over Corbett's cuts to PSU's budget.  The Lincoln mention was in reference to the Morrill Act of 1862 that gave public lands to colleges for the purpose of agriculture and engineering education.

"But not in our wildest imagination could we have anticipated a proposal like this," Spanier went on. Overall state spending would fall about three percent under the Corbett proposal, while higher-education spending specifically would take a 50 percent hit.

Spanier said university leaders are now "working around the clock to develop contingency plans."  He vowed to challenge the size of the cut that Corbett has proposed.

After the education budget battle, Corbett's approval numbers plummeted to lows not seen by a new governor (and would become part of his electoral undoing).

Seemingly out of nowhere and with no evidence of Spanier's involvement in decision related to the Sandusky matter, the OAG contacted Cynthia Baldwin to arrange an interview with Spanier.

The former PSU president was interviewed on March 22, 2011 in the OAG's State College office -- coincidentally in a building owned by former Director of The Second Mile, Bruce Heim. 

Next, on April 11th, Spanier testified to a grand jury under the incorrect assumptions he was voluntarily testifying and that he was being represented by Baldwin.  Spanier did not make any statements to the grand jury that were false or resulted in charges.

Without any admissions by Spanier, the OAG prosecutors charged Curley and Schultz with perjury and failure to report child abuse -- all the while knowing the charges couldn't stand up.

As revealed in the notes of former PSU President Rodney Erickson, OAG prosecutor Frank Fina believed the charges would cause one or both men to "flip" on their former boss.

The evidence above shows that the criminal justice system was being used for personal reasons, and sadly, that is not unusual in Pennsylvania.

More Coincidences?

Other high profile cases involving AG Corbett, and his prosecutor Fina, have many of the same odors as the case against Spanier.

The so-called corruption cases called Computergate and Bonusgate cases were seemingly used to eliminate Corbett opponents John Perzel, Mike Veon, and Bill DeWeese.

Perzel was the odds-on favorite to become the GOP nominee for Governor in 2010 -- until he was charged with using government computers and software to advance his campaign.  While Corbett claimed politics were not involved in the prosecution -- because he had not yet announced his candidacy in 2007 -- he became a candidate in 2008.  Perzel claimed that Corbett's prosecution of him was "political opportunism."

Perzel,  pleaded guilty and served two years in jail but recently won an appeal in which threw out his $1 million fine.

Veon, who quickly rose through the Democrat ranks to become house whip, was convicted in the Bonusgate  case.  He called his prosecution the "criminalization of politics" and was awarded a new trial in 2016.

DeWeese, who was at the top of the Democratic Party leadership was also convicted in Bonusgate.  However, he  was recently awarded a hearing to overturn his Bonusgate conviction on the grounds that the late Judge Todd Hoover, who was also presided over decisions in the Spanier case, did not allow him to present 14 witnesses who would have corroborated his account. 

In Spanier's case, Hoover simply refused to make rather simple rulings and prolonged the case by at least two years.

As reported last week,"a lot of circumstantial evidence (i.e., coincidences) is not a positive thing for the accused -- and there are too many coincidences involving Tom Corbett."

Next:  Part 2 - The Non-Investigation of Sandusky and The Second Mile


  1. I strongly agree that the Moulton Report is not any evidence at all that the OAG targeting Spanier was not political retribution by Corbett.

    Moulton said his scope was "very narrow" - to investigate whether politics slowed the Sandusky investigation. His time frame was from Nov. 2008 to Nov. 2011. Spanier was not charged until Nov. 2012.

    Too, Moulton's investigation was hobbled by lack of subpoena power to compel witnesses to speak with him and the PA State Police Commissioner's refusal to allow his state troopers to speak to Moulton. The latter was very detrimental to Moulton because the state police investigated Sandusky.

  2. Mr. Moulton, of course there was no DIRECT evidence of Corbutt's political mischief. Did you get a chance to look through Tommy's desk or ask him if he was a bad man.........under oath? However, your statement professing such is........inexplicable and that makes you an obfuscator. Ouch!

  3. Ray;

    If Hobson, or any one else were to take the time to analyze and digest both the Freeh Report and the Moulton Report he would easily conclude that Freeh's report chose to take a minimal amount of circumstantial evidence and reach a damming, aggressive, conclusion of guilt by Paterno, etal. while Moulton chose to take a minimal maybe even moderate amount of circumstantial evidence and reached a passive, inconclusive result of Corbett's motives. Freeh was a paid hatchet man and Moulton was an evaluator of the facts and not a peddler of conjecture. Yet both are give the same weight by the media.

    1. Mike,
      Thanks for your comments. Great points on the different methods and motivations involved in the two investigations -- though I am hesitant to call what Freeh did an investigation.

  4. "Reasons for initial delays in the Sandusky investigation remain head-scratchers."

    I don't think it is too hard to understand the initial delays. Sandusky had a sterling reputation so the OAG believed victim 1 would not be enough to get a conviction. Didn't the first grand jury decline to indict based on victim 1's testimony?

    Too, I do think that politics played a role, the fact that Corbett had his eye on the governor's office. A child abuse case that he got because of a DA's conflict of interest was just not a top priority for the OAG. They were probably too busy dreaming of the bigger paychecks they would all get in the Corbett administration.

    1. Tim,
      Thanks for your comment.

      The first grand jury desired a presentment and Eshbach began working on it in late 2009. Eshbach wanted to arrest Sandusky and make the presentment public with the hope of bringing more victims forward -- including the two (aside from Fisher) that she knew about but wasn't allowed to contact.

      Corbett disapproved of the presentment in August 2010 and Fina instructed her to find more witnesses.

      Based on the evidence, it appears that Eshbach leaked the 1998 police report to Jan Murphy of the Patriot News in September 2010. That was her way of getting some help unearthing the two other victims.

      The Patriot News sat on the police report until Ganim got there in January 2011. Ganim used it to track down the mother of Victim 6 and the wife and mother of BK.

      The top priority of Corbett and the AG was to AVOID the Sandusky case...for reasons yet to be determined.

    2. Ray, IF Corbett's goal was to avoid the Sandusky case, that would undermine the entire idea of a "feud."

      That said, do you have any evidence that the OAG had the 1998 report in 9/10?

    3. JJ,
      Actually, I have evidence that the OAG knew about the 1998 incident in June 2009.

      BTW, there are two police reports from 1998 -- University Park and State College PD. No one ever mentions the latter.

    4. I had heard of a second report, but I am unaware of the origins.

      Could you, of have you, posted that evidence.

  5. Ray - Why would Eshbach leak the 1998 police report in Sept. 2010 to advance the case instead of just contacting the two 1998 victims herself?

    It just seems like a silly way to do it.

    Are you implying she was ordered not to present the 1998 police report to the grand jury?

    1. I would raise the question on if the report was discovered in 9/2010.

    2. JJ - Ganim clearly had a copy of the 1998 police report for her March, 2011 article. She quoted PSU Detective Ron Schreffler as asking “How did you see that report?”

      She likely had it months before that because it took a while to put the story together.

    3. Tim and JJ,
      The Patriot News is on the record that Ganim had the 1998 police report in early 2011. I confirmed with the mother of Victim 6 that Ganim had it in January.

      The mother informed me Ganim called her in January and read verbatim from it.

    4. Since the story was from early 2011, it is likely that Ganim had it in the first part of 2011. That is not September of 2010, however.

      I should point out that Ganim was an alumnae and worked at the Collegian while a student. The police report was there. It would not necessarily be coming from OAG. Somebody with access to the records could have gotten it to Ganim.

  6. There are two distinct and separate things that happened.

    1. Spanier was forced to resign (and had a very good financial deal in doing so).

    2. Paterno was removed.

    For Spanier, that occurred before the meeting when Corbett showed up.

    There were reasons for the BoT to be angry with Spanier. At the spring (March or April) BoT meeting he said that the ongoing investigation had nothing to do with Penn State. He also said that privately to one BoT member (Jones) that inquired after reading the Ganim story. He claimed, wrongly, that he couldn't reveal his grand jury testimony.

    Those are all things that have nothing to do with Corbett; Spanier was called before the grand jury about 3 months after Corbett left his position as AG. They deal with Spanier's conduct as President of Penn State, and his relation with the BoT. While that was not illegal, it was certainly a legitimate ground for termination. Remember also that Spanier was not charged at that point, but AG Kelly had indicated that he could be.

    Paterno, on the other hand, had announced his retirement effective at the end of the season. The presentment indicated that he had properly reported the 2001 incident; there was no indication at that point that he was aware of the 1998 incident. The removal of Paterno, and how it was carried out, had a very different dynamic and a different set of circumstances.

    It is incorrect to equate the two.

    1. JJ, Really? By trying to separate the wrongful termination of these two highly esteemed men at Penn State you've unwittingly linked the two. They were both falsely accused by the PA Attorney General's office of knowing about the Second Mile's founder, Jerry Sandusky's fictitious shower rape. And they were both wrongfully terminated based on this single lie made up by the Attorney General's office.

      All of this was supported by then Governor Corbett. He knew it was all a fabrication to remove two honorable men from power at Penn State. Whether it be "forced resignation" or fired on the phone, it was all based on a lie created by the state.

      Tom Corbett, as the previous Attorney General for two and a half terms, is the only one for ten years that had knowledge of, and could have stopped Sandusky's Second Mile child abuse throughout PA. That's ten years of Tom Corbett condoning child rape at Second Mile. Which begs the question, what person or organization above Corbett, wanted him to ignore the wrong-doing of Sandusky and his Second Mile directors?

      As Governor, Tom Corbett then pretended he wasn't the Attorney General for that long with knowledge of Sandusky complaints. He misled the public to assume he only had knowledge of Sandusky's Second Mile rape exploits for a couple years serving as the Governor. And all during his decade long tenure as Attorney General, he didn't see any Sandusky complaints. Hard to believe, isn't it?

    2. Ah, Paterno, in 2011, was not accused; the AGO specifically said he would NOT be charged. Spanier, however, was still being investigated.

      While Spanier's resignation was, no doubt, forced, he received an exceptional retirement package. When Spanier told the Board that Sandusky did not involve Penn State, he should have been tossed, with cause. That was not criminal, but I would have fired anyone that worked for me that did that. The lie was that the investigation Sandusky "doesn't involve Penn State."

      Had Spanier been honest that there were incidents that happened on campus, the BoT might have been able to prepare for the presentment. He might have even survived the week.

      There was no complaint regarding Sandusky with either the OAG nor the State Police until the case was referred to the OAG's until then Centre County, Madeira, referred the case to the OAG because of a conflict of interest. Had Madeira's wife not been the biological sister of one of Sandusky's adopted children, the OAG would not have gotten the case.

      There were no complaints lodged with the OAG about Sandusky until that point.

      Further Corbett was Acting AG In 1997-98, leaving office in January of 1998. He became elected AG, being sworn in 1/2005 and leaving in 1/2011. That is neither 10 years nor two terms.

    3. JJ, Ah, I see you are one of the few Tom Corbett apologists left in the rotten state of PA. Yes, I should have calculated that Tom Corbett's final term as Attorney General was cut short by his being elected Governor. However, if we add Terrible Tommy's tenure on to his long tenure as the Attorney General, we get 12 long years of overseeing the suppression of Sandusky and Second Mile complaints. So yes, I stand corrected, Tom Corbett had even MORE than a decade to stop Sandusky. But he waited until he could set up Spanier, Paterno, and Penn State to save his own hide. That's a long wait to finally stop a criminal pedophile, isn't it?

      And with the help of Josh Shapiro and Bruce Beemer, we even have the destruction of Second Mile records. Why destroy them if they did no wrong?

    4. On My mistake. Corbett was acting AG from mid October 1995 through January 1997.

    5. No, Truther, I'm not a fan of Corbett. I do want to see Paterno lumped in with Spanier.

      Spanier didn't inform the BoT, his superiors. The OAG indicated that he mignt be facing charges. He resigned and got an obscenely huge golden parachute.

      Paterno didn't suppress any information, but reported the situation, promptly, to his superiors. The OAG said he would not be charged. He was abruptly removed, despite the fact that he had already announced that this would be his final season.

      Don't lump Paterno in with Spanier.

    6. Corbett certainly was involved in the firing of Paterno because he was a voting Trustee and present for the meeting. Plus, he had far more knowledge about the Sandusky case as the former Attorney General. Corbett had outsize influence because he appointed a bunch of other trustees who voted as he did.

      By rights, Corbett should have recused himself, not attended the meeting or expressed any opinion on Sandusky-related matters because he was in charge of the Sandusky investigation.

      Years later Corbett admitted that firing Paterno was the wrong thing to do.

      Corbett also had an ax to grind with Spanier. Spanier bested and embarrassed Corbett when he opposed Corbett's 50% cut in state aid to Penn State.

    7. JJ - You wrote "At the spring (March or April) BoT meeting he [Spanier] said that the ongoing investigation had nothing to do with Penn State."

      I think Spanier believed that based on what prosecutors and Cynthia Baldwin told him. Baldwin heard the grand jury testimony of Curley, Schultz and Spanier and provided subpoenaed materials to OAG, including all the 2001 emails about the Sandusky shower incident.

      If anyone should have suspected PSU faced legal liabilities for Sandusky in early 2011, it should have been Baldwin. Baldwin was at the same BOT meeting as Spanier in 2011 and spoke about the Sandusky investigation. She didn't warn the trustees that PSU may be facing a firestorm, yet she was not fired.

      Firing Paterno and forcing Spanier out were both extremely bad for PSU. Spanier would never have been duped by the NCAA into accepting the draconian sanctions and $60 million fine. Spanier had been on the NCAA Executive Committee so knew how they operated.

    8. Tim, Spanier was aware that the investigation did involve Penn State and did involve incidents that happened on campus, that were either reported by an employee, through the chain of command (2001)or involved a employee as the the target of an investigation (1998).

      Further, Spanier, under the rules in force in 2011, could determine exactly how much Baldwin could say to the BoT; that chain of command ran through him. He ordered Baldwin out of the room.

      There are two different things. The resignation of Spanier and the removing of Paterno from coaching duties are very different in their nature. They are not equal.

      You can say that the removal of Paterno was horrifically handled, and I agree. Spanier being permitted to resign, and his multi-million dollar severance package, were an overly generous. He deserved the phone call, but he never got it.

      In terms of your statements about Corbett that he was not the AG at the time,and that his tenure ended before Spanier was questioned.

    9. JJ - All the trustees were aware of the 1998 shower incident in early 2011 because Ganim discussed that in her newspaper article. Trustee Corbett and General Counsel Cynthia Baldwin were also aware of the 2001 incident.

      Baldwin never made the claim that Spanier ordered her not to tell the other trustees about the 2001 shower incident. If she thought it was important that they know, then she was derelict in her duty to PSU.

      I never said removing Paterno and Spanier were equivalent. I agree that firing Paterno was handled horribly.

      In hindsight, you can say Spanier got an overly generous severance but maybe that was specified in his employment contract. He was a very successful President in fund raising, bringing in over a billion so probably earned it. PSU is known for high executive salaries. Barron is currently the 6th highest paid public university President.

      Corbett was Attorney General when McQueary testified before the grand jury. It is hard to believe he wouldn't have been told about that huge break in the Sandusky case.

      There would have been nothing stopping Trustee Corbett from telling the BoT that it was imperative for them to speak to Paterno, Curley and Schultz about Sandusky. Ganim had already named them as grand jury witnesses.

      Too, some other trustees were involved with Second Mile so knew more than Ganim had reported as well. Why didn't they speak up to warn the BoT?

    10. Tim, the BoT did not have the details of the 1998 incident. The members of the BoT, as a whole, did not know of about the 2001 incident. I am not sure how much Corbett knew, but he was not at the meeting; the first BoT meeting Corbett attended was the November 2011 meeting.

      Baldwin, according to multiple sources, including her testimony, was dismissed from the room, by Spanier, when the BoT went into executive session. Spanier, as president, had this authority at the time from Special Order 1. (b) 2 .

      "...the Board shall receive and consider thorough and forthright reports on the affairs of the University by the President or those designated by the President. It has a continuing obligation to require information or answers on
      any University matter with which it is concerned."

      Spanier, by not "designating" Baldwin to report, blocked her ability to report.

      (I think that a similar rule still exists, but these are from the 2011 rules.)

      Again, there is nothing illegal in that, but it is cause for termination.

    11. JJ - Ganim mentioned some details of the 1998 shower incident in her March, 2011 article. The BoT should have sought more info on the 1998 incident and who better to tell them than fellow trustee Corbett, who was in charge of the investigation. All it might have taken was an email or phone call to Corbett. If not Corbett, they could have asked Paterno, Curley, the police chief or Detective Ron Schreffler (mentioned by Ganim).

      Baldwin gave contradictory stories. Her sworn deposition to Freeh made no mention of being dismissed from the room.

      There was nothing preventing Baldwin from contacting a trustee outside of the meeting. In fact, she would have had a duty to report if she thought PSU faced legal liability from the 1998 or 2001 incidents. Allegedly, Baldwin had a copy of the 1998 police report by early 2011.

    12. JJ,
      Judge Feudale told Spanier he was not at liberty to disclose the details of his grand jury testimony. That said, Spanier was not aware of the details of the 1998 incident (and there's no evidence to date that demonstrates otherwise).

      Baldwin obviously undermined Spanier during this entire process. Her grand jury testimony contains about 88 falsehoods and misleading statements.

    13. JJ,
      The top leaders and Penn State University and four members of the BOT (Surma and Garban, plus two others) knew about the presentment in advance and held a meeting before it was released. This is all in court transcripts.

      In the immediate aftermath of the release, Ken Frazier told the Board not to panic and that the presentment is a one-sided document that is typically overblown.

      On November 9, 2011, the transcripts of the meeting show the Corbett and Surma were the only two people talking when the decisions were made to remove Paterno and Spanier.

      Spanier had submitted his resignation prior to the meeting, but it was rejected.

      Hope this clears things up.

    14. Actually, Feudale gave no such statement. Spanier was free to disclose to the BoT that there were two KNOWN incidents on campus; Spanier was inform about 1998, as it happened. There are e-mails going to him. They were included in appendix (2 & 3) to the 2012 Grand Jury presentment.

    15. Ray, knowing that there was a presentment and knowing what was in the presentment are two different things.

      Please give me a link to where Spanier's resignation was refused. Spanier, in his lawsuit against PSU claims to have resigned:

    16. JJ - Ganim gave a lot of details about the 1998 shower incident in her March 2011 article so the trustees did not need Spanier to tell them about it.

      The 1998 emails to Spanier gave no details just said that there was an investigation and later that there would be no charges. He was out of the country at the time and claimed he never saw the emails or didn't remember reading them.

      I do remember reading that Spanier initially offered his resignation, and it was refused. Then he ended up resigning later. Some news reports mistakenly claimed he was fired, e.g.

      "Joe Paterno, PSU president Spanier, both fired"

    17. JJ,
      Go to page 58 of the July 30, 2013 prelminary hearing (part 1) and you will find that Feudale issued a non-disclosure order to PSU was in February 2010. He also advised Spanier that he should not disclose his grand jury testimony.,%202013%20Preliminary%20Hearing%20Transcript%201%20of%202.PDF

      BTW, media accounts of the legal aspects of this case are completely unreliable.

    18. Roberto, the attorney, asks a question. The witness says he's not aware of it. That is not a nondisclosure statement.

      Baldwin in her testimony before the grand jury, answered this question about it:

      "Q. At no time during the interview [with Feudale] was he told, in any way, shape or form that it was secret. He couldn't talk about it or anything like that.

      [Baldwin]: "There was no such admonition."

      It is p. 133 here:,%202013%20-%20Exhibits%20of%20Pre-Trial%20Proceedings%20(1).pdf

      Bladwin also indicated that she told Spanier via e-mail that he could reveal his own testimony.

      Transcripts of Spanier's testimony and of Baldwin's pre testimony meeting with Feudale, are available. I am NOT aware of any place in those where Feudale ever told Spanier or Baldwin that Sppanier's testimony was secret. If you would find something that does, I'd be interested.

    19. JJ,
      Baldwin's testimony against these men was tossed because she violated attorney-client privilege. Baldwin's testimony can't be taken at face value, considering the reason she was testifying against Spanier was to save her own skin because she would be charged for obstruction of justice.

      Good gracious. Roberto asked a PRESS OFFICIAL if she was aware the University was under a non-disclosure agreement from February 2010. Do you think Roberto was just making that up?

    20. JJ,
      I'm familiar with the transcripts and you won't find Feudale's instructions about non-disclosure to Spanier.

      A lot went on before the proceedings were put on the record.

  7. As far as I can tell, Houser is a Democrat (as is Parks Miller). I would question why he would be supportive of a Republican Governor-elect.

    Further, Houser would not only have to know that McQueary told Paterno, and that Paterno told Curley and Schultz, and that nobody called DPW or the police. I doubt that this was knowable, by anyone other than those directly involved.

    1. JJ - You missed the point. The political affiliation of Houser and Parks Miller had nothing to do with it.

      Centre County DA, Parks Miller, was legally obligated to pass along a tip about Sandusky to the Attorney General. If not for the conflict of interest by her predecessor, Parks Miller would have inherited the Sandusky case.

      Houser was a long time critic of Paterno. A legitimate question is whether that played any role in Houser's Nov. 2010 tip to police that McQueary may know something about Sandusky abusing boys.

      If the Corbett investigation of Sandusky had been at all competent, they would have discovered the 2001 shower incident within a few weeks after starting the probe in March 2009. Two of the most logical people to question about Sandusky abusing boys would have been his bosses, Paterno and Second Mile CEO Raykovitz. Each knew of the 2001 shower incident.

    2. This comment has been removed by the author.

    3. How would Houser had known that McQueary reported it to Paterno at the time, that Paterno had told Curley and/or Schultz, and that Curley and/or Schultz reported it to Spanier? Spainier claimed that he didn't know who originated the report.

      Houser may or may not have been a critic of Paterno, but he would not have any of knowing what happened in the upper echelons of Penn State's administration.

      Further, how would he know that no one called the police or DPW?

      I would not be too sure that:

      1. Parks Miller was "legally obligated" to report anything.

      2. Parks Miller even knew about the OAG investigation. He forwarding of the e-mail was not to OAG, but the Pennsylvania State Police (PSP), Criminal Investigation Unit at Rockview. The PSP forwarded it to Sassano.

    4. JJ,

      You are arguing out of complete ignorance. I know what Houser's "handle" was and I know he was a Paterno critic.

      It doesn't matter if Houser knew what McQueary told Paterno or any of the other things you are brought up. All the OAG needed Houser to do was send in a tip on McQueary (because it already knew what happened in 2001).

      Just like it knew what happened in 1998 well before it (allegedly) obtained the 1998 police report from PSU on January 3, 2011.

    5. Ray, you are claiming that this was some plot to get Spanier.

      Neither Houser, nor anyone at OAG, knew if this ever got to Spanier. There WAS evidence, but it was the stuff locked in the VP of Finance's office. Schultz, who put it there, didn't know if it was still there in January 2011.

      Spanier was not even charged until 2012.

      A plot to take out Paterno? Well, Houser had no idea if the 2001 incident was reported by Paterno; he may not have known that McQueary even told Paterno. It turns out that Paterno DID report it properly.

      Houser may or may not have been a Paterno critic, but Spanier is not Paterno.

      So how do they use Houser, who does not seem to be aligned with Corbett, to "get" Spanier.

  8. JJ - I don't know why you are bringing things up that were never mentioned in the article. It really doesn't matter if Houser knew the details about what McQueary knew or did.

    The fact is he sent the tip that led OAG investigators to McQueary. Maybe Houser did that because he wanted to get Paterno in trouble. McQueary was tied closely to Paterno.

    Why is Houser's political affiliation at all important?

    1. The post said, "Again, was the tip from Houser just a coincidence or was Houser found for a specific purpose?" That suggests that he was "found" as part of a feud between Spanier and Corbett. Corbett is a Republican while, as far as I can tell, Houser is a Democrat. It doesn't sound like he would involved in helping support a Republican.

      The post is about a feud between Spanier and Corbett. Where is the connection between Houser and Corbett or between Houser and Spanier?

    2. JJ - You are extrapolating well beyond the claim in the article, which did not mention political affiliation.

      Houser's tip merely led investigators to McQueary, who they should have found long before if they had just spoken to either of Sandusky's bosses, Paterno or Raykovitz.

    3. JJ,
      Political affiliations are irrelevant to the corruption in Pennsylvania. Both sides are corrupt.

      The connecting thread between Spanier's firing and Paterno's firing is John Surma. As the blogpost states, Surma wanted Paterno to be removed as soon as he got on the board in 2007...and as soon as the presentment went public Corbett began working the phones with Surma.

      Houser had it out for Paterno and he was involved in chats with Mike McQueary and his brother about what Mike witnessed. From what I heard, they referred to Sandusky as "Soapy."

      In September 2010, the OAG subpoenaed the IP addresses of many individuals who were in chat rooms and posting on message boards about Sandusky. No doubt, Houser was one of those people.

      Houser declined to comment when he was approached by ESPN in 2013/2014 for Van Natta's "The Whistleblower's Last Stand."

      Why would he not comment on sending the email tip? Sounds like something he should be proud of, right?

      Not hard to connect the dots here. The OAG had the names of all the chatters/posters and all it had to do was convince one to send in a tip (after Corbett was elected).

    4. Surma, supposedly wanting to get Paterno out AFTER the presentment, does not have anything to do with Corbett. I am not suggesting that Paterno's termination was handled correctly (Freeh felt that isn't wasn't) but I am suggesting that this linkage to some grand plan has a lot of problems.

      I'm not certain that they could not have found the IP address from the email, and went to whomever sent it.

      Houser lived in Centre County, and worked at PSU (he received his master's in 2012). He might have been trying to be a bit discrete because of his employment.

      And, even if Houser, for some obscure reason, "had it out for Paterno," how does he know the level of Paterno's involvement. All that McQueary could tell him is that he contacted Paterno and later talked to Schultz and Curley. McQueary didn't know that Paterno reported it the next day. He didn't know that no one from the police or DPW investigated. If McQueary didn't know, Houser could not know.

      Since you mentioned the that the OAG subpoenaed IP addresses, that should show contact between McQueary's brother and Houser. The date could be verified.

    5. JJ - Ray's theory is that the OAG tracked down Houser and asked him to send in a tip. The reason is that it would give them a better cover story. I don't know if it is true but it is plausible enough given how underhanded the OAG can be.

      Why is it that of the dozens of football fans who read the message board, only one sent in a tip? If the online chat about Sandusky was so disturbing, why didn't it generate a lot of tips?

    6. I am saying the "They got Houser to do it" theory does not work too well.

      The reasons it doesn't are:

      A. Houser had no way of knowing if, in 2001, there had been an investigation of that incident or not. He could have been reporting something where there was an investigation at the time.

      B. Houser had no way of knowing Spanier was involved. Spanier claimed to have not know the origin of the 2001 incident, i.e. who reported it to Paterno. If Spanier was not involved, it wouldn't be anything to fuel the assumed feud.

      As for Paterno, I will remind you that Paterno was not charged and the AG, Kelly, said that there were no plans to charge him in the future. In regard to the 2001 incident, it is clear that Paterno made a timely reported to Curley, as was policy at the time.

      So, in that case, Houser is reporting about an incident where Paterno complied with the law. In actual substance, reporting the 2001 incident showed no criminal liability of Paterno's part.

      To use the incident to "get" Spanier, at that point in time, they would need evidence that Spanier had been informed in 2001, and that was not available.

      To use the incident get Paterno, they would have to show that he didn't report it, promptly, or that he was part of criminal conspiracy. The problem is, Paterno reported it, the day after it was reported to him.

      What happened with Paterno's removal could not have been part of some major plan, but something that cropped up in November 2011.

    7. JJ - You seem to be greatly overthinking this. If the OAG asked Houser to send in a tip then he was just a pawn.

      Think about why the OAG might have wanted a cover story about how they found McQueary. I can think of several.

      My top choice would be that the police went to McQueary in 2010 because of a complaint about his sexting, and McQueary told them about Sandusky to get him off the hook for the sexting.

      The OAG couldn't admit that they found McQueary because of his sexting. That would hurt his credibility and give Paterno grounds for firing him. They would have needed a clean cover story to explain how they found McQueary.

      There have been online stories, with photos, that McQueary did like sexting so it is not that far-fetched.

    8. Tim,
      The subpoena for the cell phones of the football staff was issued in February 2011, therefore the OAG didn't know about Mike's sexting until after they contacted him in November.

    9. Ray - If the OAG got a complaint from someone who McQueary was sexting in 2010, then that would have given them a reason to approach him then.

      It's your conspiracy theory that "All the OAG needed Houser to do was send in a tip on McQueary."

      I'm just trying to come up with a plausible motive. Do you have a better motive for OAG to want Houser to send in a tip?

    10. Tim, if the OAG didn't find out about McQueary from Houser's tip, where did they get that? There was no police report; the printed e-mails are in a locked file cabinet in the office of the VP for Finance.

      McQueary could have come to them directly, if he knew of an investigation. Same with anybody else who knew. Why would they have to go through Houser?

      I think that there was no long range plan about Paterno. I think Corbett thought he'd make political points by pushing Paterno out. There was a lot of public support for ending Paterno's tenure, at least at the end of the season.

      Further, none of deals with any Spanier/Corbett feud. By the time Corbett showed up, Spanier had submitted his resignation.

    11. JJ _ You didn't read my previous reply where I speculated that the police may have approached McQueary in 2010 about his sexting, and he told them his Sandusky story to get off the hook for the sexting. The OAG couldn't make public that they stumbled onto key witness McQueary when investigating McQueary for possible sex crimes.

      There are other plausible explanations. Perhaps a reporter reading the football blog notified the police about McQueary. The OAG wouldn't want it known that they were scooped by a reporter so they could have got Houser to take credit for the tip.

      Another possibility is that the OAG found McQueary through illegal methods, such as phone surveillance without a warrant, and needed a legitimate cover story about how they found him.

      McQueary testified he knew what the police wanted when they showed up in Nov. 2010, so if he had contacted them previously, he perjured himself.

      The Corbett-Spanier feud occurred well before Spanier's resignation. During his campaign for governor, Corbett got mad when he saw Spanier with his opponent. Corbett was later mad at Spanier for opposing his more than 50% cut in state aid to PSU. He got even madder when Spanier beat him and the 50% cut was drastically reduced.

    12. Tim, unless there was someone under 18 involved, sexting is not criminal. You can rule out an investigation.

      Police do get scooped by reporters. It would be no big thing, and would not require using Houser.

      Illegal methods would invalidate any charge.

      Yes, the first meeting was in the parking lot. They spoke to McQueary by phone to set up the meeting.

      The supposed feud however was clearly not the cause of Spanier's removal. The BoT was discussing it on 11/6/11 and on a conference call on 11/8. Guess who was not at the meeting or on the conference call, Corbett.

      I think Corbett had a great deal to do with Paterno's removal, but very little to do with Spanier's removal.

    13. JJ - If the police did approach McQueary about sexting in 2010, then they must have believed it was criminal. If it is unwanted, sexting can be criminal harassment even if the person receiving it is over 18.

      The article does provide evidence that Corbett played a role in getting Spanier removed as President, i.e.

      "Later in 2013, after Corbett filed a lawsuit against the NCAA, he told a group of former PSU football players that his statement at the November 9, 2011 trustee meeting, "remember that boy in the shower," was directed toward the Board's decision to fire Spanier."

    14. Tim, you assume that the police approached McQueary about sexting. You saying it does not make it so.

      It is unlikely the police would contact McQueary about sexting, because is that sexting is legal, so long as it between adults.

      Yes, he was involved on November 9th, 2011. The BoT was discussing it on November 6th, 2011. Spanier had already agreed to go by the 11/9/11 meeting and has indicated that he resigned.

    15. JJ,
      The Moulton Report confirmed that Fina knew about the 1998 PSU police report BEFORE it was recovered on January 3, 2011.

      Mike Gillum, who was in contact with Jonelle Eshbach throughout the investigation, confirmed the 1998 incident was known in 2009 -- but the OAG sat on the lead.

      But everyone still seemingly believes the 1998 report was recovered on Jan 3, 2011.

      BTW, the Schultz file couldn't have been hidden by Schultz in his drawer because he wasn't even a PSU employee when he was subpoenaed -- and he didn't have access to his desk.

      The dates that evidence was found or turned over were falsified -- and the blame shifted onto Curley, Schultz, and Spanier.

      The Moulton Report confirmed the emails were in possession of the police in July 2011. They weren't not found by Louis Freeh - as he claimed.

      Cynthia Baldwin had access to every record in the Schultz file and in the former office of Wendell Courtney. If you think that the OAG didn't know about 2001 until the anonymous tip, then I have a bridge to sell you.

    16. Tim and JJ,
      As the feud between Spanier and Corbett heated up, then Governor Corbett was a member of the PSU BOT -- and in contact with many trustees, including John Surma.

      Surma and other trustees wanted rid of Paterno. Corbett wanted rid of Spanier...and so did other trustees.

      Quid pro quo.

      The AG knew of Houser's animous toward Paterno. Easy to see how they could use him as a pawn.

      FYI -- Houser is not from State College and didn't graduate from PSU in 2012. He was formerly employed as a policeman in York County until he was shot and injured on the job. He lives outside York, PA.

    17. Ray, the Moulton Report indicates that the police had the police report on 1/2/2011, It also notes "According to Fina, he remembers receiving a partial copy of this report on an informal basis somewhat earlier than January 3, most likely in November or December 2010." (p. 65)

      Now, "November or December 2010" is not 2009.

      Please state where you think the Moulton Report says that the police report was received by OAG prior to November 2010.

    18. Ray, I think you have the wrong Houser. There is a Christian Houser that lives in Centre County and works at Penn State; the family appears to have been there for a while.

      He was the first name that came up when I Googled the name and on some lists the only one that over 16 in 2010, and has any association with Pennsylvania.

    19. JJ,
      I didn't say the Moulton Report showed the AG had the report in 2009. For that you have to do other research on the case and ask the people involved. One of those people was Mike Gillum, who wrote that Eshbach and Rossman (in June 2009) HAD EVIDENCE about an incident occurring in 1998 but were NOT AT LIBERTY TO DISCLOSE it. DPW records from 1998 have never been part of the evidence in this case, therefore the evidence was the 1998 police report.

      Second, my blogpost incorrectly reported Houser's first name. It's Christopher, not Christian. He was a York County cop and now resides in Southeastern PA, though I am not aware of the exact town name.

    20. Well, can you make sure that this is the right Chris Houser. Your free to check the alumni directory.

      I do not see anyone from OAG having that earlier. That said, there are several people that were involved in 1998. OAG may have heard of an incident, but had no documentation. The DA's Office had nothing on it.

    21. Ray - Interesting coincidence if tipster, Houser, was a York County cop. Eshbach is from York County, where last year she was defeated in the DA primary.

      Eshbach worked in the York County DA's office from 1988 to 2000.

  9. Speak of the devil, Tom Corbett, just gave a Jan. 8 interview where he expressed regrets about the Sandusky scandal.

    Governor Tom Corbett – The Complete Uncut Interview

    The Sandusky scandal discussion starts about the 53 minute mark.

    Corbett admitted that "a lot of mistakes occurred" and that "It was hard to fathom, even for me, that Mr. Sandusky did what he did. I'm sure it was very difficult for Mr. Paterno to fathom that too."

    Had Corbett told the Trustees the latter back in Nov. 2011, maybe Paterno would not have been fired.

    Corbett refused to say whether he believed firing Paterno was the right thing to do. He also maintained that he didn't vote to fire Paterno but said he didn't expect anyone to believe that.

    He also claimed he could not warn the Trustees about the upcoming firestorm touched off by Sandusky's arrest because of grand jury secrecy rules. I think that is BS because Ganim's March 2011 article gave away the secrets on the Sandusky grand jury and the 1998 Sandusky shower incident at PSU.

    Trustee Corbett could have legally advised the trustees to hire a crisis management firm and speak to Curley, Schultz and Paterno about their grand jury testimony. Ganim had already reported that those three men testified at the grand jury.

  10. JJ,
    You wrote:
    The supposed feud however was clearly not the cause of Spanier's removal. The BoT was discussing it on 11/6/11 and on a conference call on 11/8. Guess who was not at the meeting or on the conference call, Corbett.

    I think Corbett had a great deal to do with Paterno's removal, but very little to do with Spanier's removal.

    At a meeting with former PSU football players in January 2013, Corbett told them his intention was to remove Spanier and that was the reason for his remark "remember the little boy in the shower."

    However, Corbett wanted both of them removed.

    According to multiple sources, Corbett told Surma:

    "“You must act because my reputation is at stake.”

    Then he threatened him:

    “If you don’t do this (remove Spanier and fire Paterno) then you will lose my support in Harrisburg!”

    I've been investigating this case for six years. Conversely, you've been swallowing the crap written about it and then acting as a propaganda machine for the Commonwealth.

    You've done the same with the Gricar case.

    1. Ray, you have posted things that are, as best, inaccurate, and you are being called on it.

      I don't know how ANYONE could that saying Corbett had a great deal to do with removing Paterno could be considered "acting as a propaganda machine for the Commonwealth." It certainly does not put Corbett in a very good light.

      The problem with the "Corbett/Spanier feud" is that the BoT had reached a decision to end their relationship with Spanier prior to 11/9/11, when Corbett finally showed up. They had been looking at it on 11/6/11. It was, in part, because of Spanier's press release that expressed support for Curley and Schultz.

      Corbett's role in removing Spanier was minor; his role in removing Paterno was much more substantial. The method of Spanier's removal, permitting him to resign, was justified, if not overly generous. The way Paterno was removed was not.

      I think it is interesting that you feel a need to defend Spanier to the extent you are.

    2. JJ,
      You claim things I wrote are inaccurate because of your assumptions about the case -- not what actually happened.

      Corbett finally showed up on 11/9/11. INCORRECT. Corbett became an ex officio member of the BOT the moment he was sworn in as governor. He was in communication with members of the BOT, notably Surma, prior to 11/9/11.

      The press release story is a load of crap. Spanier was going to get fired no matter what he did. BTW, the BOT gave about six different reasons for firing him between November 2011 and April 2012? It had to bring in PR flack Lanny Davis to finally settle on the reason.

      The above is all documented in BOT emails.

      Spanier was Corbett's target all along. Paterno was collateral damage.

      But, hey, you're entitled to your opinion. If you want to believe what the newspapers wrote, go ahead. Just don't try to use it as evidence for what actually happened in this case.

    3. 11/9/11 was the first meeting where Corbett showed up (that doesn't speak to well of Corbett's interest in PSU). Being a member ex officio does mean that you are magically transported to the meeting.

      The press release was the one written by Graham Spanier, so I think it was a load of crap. It was used as a ground for McQueary's suit against PSU, successfully.

      Again, according to Spanier, he resigned and certainly received a substantial severance package. While I have heard multiple reasons for removing Paterno from the BoT, can you cite those for Spanier?

      Once again, why do you feel a need to defend Spanier?

    4. Ray, you said this, in so many words: "Mike Gillum, who was in contact with Jonelle Eshbach throughout the investigation, confirmed the 1998 incident was known in 2009 -- but the OAG sat on the lead."

      There does not seem to be any confirmation of that.

      Again, you claim a Spanier/Corbett feud, and imply Houser was somehow planted by the OAG, in 11/10. "All the OAG needed Houser to do was send in a tip on McQueary (because it already knew what happened in 2001)."

      The funding battle, which you cite, didn't happen to March of 2011. How would Corbett know that there would be budget battle in March of 2011, in November of 2010?

      Further, how would Corbett, or anyone at OAG, know that McQueary, Jr. (Mike's brother) would tell Houser about what his brother Mike saw?

    5. JJ,
      Several trustees overheard Corbett say (in October 2010) that if elected governor he would have Spanier fired.

      Corbett didn't know in October 2010 that there would be a budget battle. Why would he know that?

      Seriously, do you think there was a well-thought out playbook for this?

      Corbett saw the education budget as a way to get back at Spanier. There's more to that story -- but since PennLive didn't write about it you have no idea what it is.

      As I wrote in the blog, AG Corbett's investigators got subpoena's to track down people who were commenting in the chat room. DVN Jr's column states that Mike's brother told Houser about what Mike witnessed.

      Again, you have to read more than just the Harrisburg propaganda machine to be aware of this information.

      BTW, you can find evidence of Eshbach having information about 1998 in other sources (aside from the Moulton Report and PennLive). Good luck.