Sunday, December 22

No Surprise...Misconduct Atop FBI

The latest DOJ IG report adds to the FBI's long history of executive misconduct, but Louis Freeh somehow remains in an unofficial "witness protection program"

Ray Blehar
December 22, 2019,  10:03 AM EST

On Monday, December 9th, DOJ IG John Horowitz reported that top FBI officials made 17 errors and omissions to the FISA court in order to justify surveillance on a U.S. citizen.   The report also found 51 violations of the procedures used for verifying and validating information in the FISA warrant submissions (a.k.a. the Woods Procedures).

Topping the list of misrepresentations, an FBI Office of General Counsel (OGC) attorney altered an email in order convince the court to renew a FISA warrant to spy on President Donald Trump.  The OGC attorney changed a single phrase in an email to make it appear that Carter Page, an associate of the Trump campaign and a CIA source, was not a CIA source.

The DOJ IG also found that exculpatory evidence was withheld from the court that likely would have put an end to the investigation almost immediately after it was opened.

Errors and omissions.
Alteration of email.
Withholding of exculpatory evidence

Sound familiar?

They should because reported similar episodes in its review and analysis of former FBI Director Louis Freeh's investigation of Penn State University (PSU).

The FBI took another hit when FISC judge Rosemary Collyer issued an strong rebuke of the FBI's handling of the case and called into question the reliability of evidence in other FISA applications.

"The frequency with which representations made by FBI personnel turned out to be unsupported or contradicted by information in their possession, and with which they withheld information detrimental to their case, calls into question whether information contained in other FBI applications is reliable." 

Rolling back the calendar to 2002, then FBI Director Robert Mueller was called into the FISC to address 75 instances of FISA cheating prior to him becoming the agency's head.

And who was at the helm before Mueller?  Louis Freeh.

While IG Horowitz's report did not answer why the most recent FISA cheating occurred, the answer seems rather obvious. FISA operates in secret and there's little chance that anyone is going to check the work, especially when the work is done at the executive level.

Friday, November 22

Initial Report: Sandusky Receives Same Sentence of 30-60 years

An updated post will follow once the court documents have not been posted on the Centre County Media Page

Ray Blehar
November 22, 2019, 5:23 PM EST

Media outlets are reporting that Jerry Sandusky received the same sentence of 30-60 years and, if he serves out his term, will be in prison until age 98.

Sandusky was convicted of 45 of 48 counts in June 2012, however, his 30-60 year sentence was based on only four (4) of the counts that garnered 5 to 10 year sentences and those sentences were to be served consecutively.   The remaining 41 counts were ordered to be served consecutively, including the counts involved in the Victim 8/Janitor incident.

The re-sentencing came as a result of the PA Supreme Court ruling that the Commonwealth's determination of Sexually Violent Predators (SVPs) was unconstitutional and that the mandatory minimum sentences connected to the SVP determination could no longer be applied.

It will be interesting to see how Judge Maureen Skerda compiled the 30-60 year sentence, but it would have been easy for her to get there given she had 41 counts that she could apply consecutively.

Sandusky maintained his innocence at the proceeding.

Thursday, November 21

Supreme Court Shoots Down Fina's Blame-Shifting Arguments

Fina's legal team's flimsy blame-shifting arguments didn't gain much traction at yesterday's Supreme Court hearing

Ray Blehar
November 21, 2019, 12:19 PM EST, Updated 1:12PM EST

Disgraced former AG and Philly DA prosecutor Frank Fina continued his blame-shifting defense at yesterday's Supreme Court hearing according to coverage by The Legal Intelligencer.

While the headline (i.e., spin) of the story by The Legal alleged the hearing showed "Fault Lines Among P.A. Justices,"'s analysis concluded that the justices were simply giving fair time to arguments put forth by the respective legal counsels. 

The bottom line appears to be that the justices shot down Fina's blame-shifting arguments.

Tuesday, October 22

Fina's Transgressions Are Worse Than ODC Knows

The Supreme Court will decide if Fina will lose his law license for misleading the court about his grand jury questioning of Cynthia Baldwin, but his transgressions were far worse than the current case being brought by the Office of Disciplinary Counsel

Ray Blehar
October 22, 2019, 5:55 PM EDT

According to one of the Penn State University (PSU) alums who filed an ethics complaint, former Office of Attorney General (OAG)  prosecutor Frank Fina's disciplinary case will be heard during the November 18-22 Pennsylvania (PA)) Supreme Court term.   Fina's legal team filed their brief on October 9th, while the Office of Disciplinary Counsel's brief  is due later this month on October 29th.

The scope of the hearing is limited to Fina's misleading of the court  regarding his improper questioning of former Penn State University (PSU) General Counsel Cynthia Baldwin.   However, Fina's transgressions far exceeded violating the attorney-client privilege issues.

Tuesday, October 8

Gladwell: The Good, the Bad, the Ugly and the Amusing

Gladwell's "Talking to Strangers"is an interesting, albeit sometimes inaccurate, read and lacks a strong ending

Ray Blehar
October 9, 2019. 11:30 PM, EDT

Rating 3.0/5

Malcolm Gladwell's latest book, Talking to Strangers -- What We Should Know about the People We Don't Know, was written over a three-year period and to the casual reader appears to be meticulously researched.  An informative read, it takes readers through a long history of misinterpretation and miscommunication among strangers, starting with Cortez and Montezuma and ending with the tragic case of Sandra Bland.   In between, Gladwell touches on the interactions of Chamberlain and Hitler, the Intelligence Community and spies (e.g. Ana Montes and Aldrich Ames), fraudster Bernie Madoff and sex offenders Jerry Sandusky and Larry Nassar and their victims, the Italian Police and Amanda Knox, and Khalid Sheikh Mohammed -- among others.

Many of the stories are fascinating, especially that of the suicide of Sylvia Plath that was enabled by her easy access to carbon monoxide in her kitchen oven.   In this instance, Gladwell uses the story as a pathway to describe "coupling" and that suicidal individuals may not commit suicide had it not been for the convenience of the death instrument -- including, for example,  San Francisco's Golden Gate Bridge.

While the book does a great job showing that most people's ability to discern truth telling from lying is quite terrible with a complete stranger and only gets worse after they've met with the stranger on several occasions.

Gladwell writes: "it is human nature to default to the truth and the world is better for it."  

Thursday, July 25

Supreme Court Denies Sandusky Appeal

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court denied Sandusky's appeal and the case will likely move to the Federal court

Ray Blehar
July 25, 2019, 8:45 AM EDT

In a one sentence ruling (below), the PA Supreme Court did as most expected and denied Jerry Sandusky's request for review of the lower court's decision.

Sandusky's legal team will likely take the matter to the Federal court where it may argue that the Commonwealth violated the Constitutional right (to a fair trial) of the former founder and face of The Second Mile. 

Thursday, June 6

BigTrial: "Reprehensible" Fina faces suspension of license

Ralph Cipriano of's coverage of the ODC ruling to suspend Frank Fina's law license

Frank Fina Gets Spanked!

By Ralph Cipriano

Frank Fina finally got his comeuppance.

In a 36-page report issued today, the Disciplinary Board of the state Supreme Court called for a suspension of the former deputy attorney general's law license for a year and a day. That recommendation now goes to the state Supreme Court.

Fina, the former lead prosecutor in the so-called Penn State sex abuse case, got blasted yesterday by the disciplinary board for his "reprehensible" and "inexcusable" conduct in purposely duping a grand jury judge into thinking that Fina wasn't going to press Cynthia Baldwin, Penn State's former counsel, into breaking the attorney-client privilege and betraying her former clients -- three top Penn State officials -- behind closed doors.

After conning the gullible judge back in October 2012, Fina then "proceeded to question [Baldwin] extensively about the very subjects he represented to Judge [Barry] Feudale he would avoid," the disciplinary board concluded. "These actions are reprehensible" and "inexcusable," the disciplinary board wrote. In addition, the board found that Fina's alleged defense of his behavior before the board was "without substance." Fina turned defense attorney Baldwin "into a witness for the prosecution against her clients," the disciplinary board wrote. And when confronted with his misconduct, he showed no remorse.

Read more at:

Thursday, May 30

Shapiro Continues His Crime & Justice Charade

PA Attorney General Josh Shapiro continues to waste tax payer dollars to pushing his "no one is above the law" charade

Ray Blehar
May 30, 2019, 9:06 PM, EDT; Updated at 9:40 PM

Yesterday, PA AG Josh Shapiro filed notice that his office intends to appeal the Federal Court's decision to vacate the verdict against former Penn State University (PSU) President Graham Spanier.  According to media reports, Shapiro continues to insist that the U.S. District Magistrate overreached in vacating the decisions of various Pennsylvania county and state courts who allowed the ex post facto application of the law every step of the way in the Spanier case.

Shapiro's appeal will be heard by the U.S. 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals.  The court notably includes former AG D. Michael Fisher, who some believe may have had a role in influencing the outcome of  the 1998 investigation of Jerry Sandusky. 

In a tweet (sent out by his lackey, Joe Grace), the AG's office told a baldfaced lie by stating that Spanier was told children were being abused.  No such evidence was presented at the trial nor does that evidence exist anywhere else in the universe.

Tuesday, May 14

We Reached 3 Million views

Dear Readers,
In late April 2019, passed 3 million views. 

Although that is the official count, back in 2014 google's counter stopped counting views/traffic from web-sites like Blue-White Illustrated and   I am sure the real number of views is significantly higher.

Thanks so much for your support!

Monday, May 6

Dick Anderson's Statement to PSU BOT

Former Penn State football assistant Dick Anderson's statement to the Penn State Board of Trustees regarding the Sandusky scandal and the Freeh Report

"On Nov. 9, 2011, Joe Paterno was fired by the Board of Trustees without due process, despite his 61 years of unparalleled service to this University and this community. The Board, confused and conflicted, was influenced by a vengeful Governor Corbett and a trustee with a personal vendetta that high-jacked its leadership. In addition, there was a bold-faced lie written by PA Prosecutor Jonelle Eshbach.

"The Board, fearing the NCAA, and lacking experience from within, jumped outside the University for counsel. They neglected to seek advice from PSU Professsor John Coyle, an internationally recognized logistics expert, who was the Faculty Representative to the NCAA for 30 years, and John Bove, who served as Penn State’s Compliance Coordinator for 14 years. Both men had intimate knowledge and personal relationships with the NCAA.

"The NCAA, not sure of their own standing on this matter, bluffed the University with the help of the Freeh Group and a lying and leaking Attorney General’s Office. It is important to note that Mark Emmert was told by his own staff not to get involved – this was not in their jurisdiction! Eventually the NCAA accepted the Freeh Report in place of their own investigation and levied one of the harshest sanctions in their history on Penn State.

"On August 28, 2012, a statement of past Chairs of the Penn State Faculty Senate was released. This ad-hoc group of 30 faculty members wrote the following:

"As a document in which evidence, facts, and logical arguments are marshaled to support conclusions and recommendations, the Freeh Report fails badly. Not only are the assertions about the Penn State culture unproven, but we declare them to be FALSE.

"John Snedden, an NCIS investigator, was sent by the Federal government to investigate President Spanier and the alleged cover-up. He concluded that there was no crime and therefore NO COVER UP.

"The A-7 report was a breath of fresh air. It exposed the Freeh Report for what it is – dishonest, deceitful, and geared to fulfill a narrative.

"In the end, the Freeh Report provided the impetus for the extreme NCAA sanctions, the incarceration of 2 outstanding administrators, the dismissal of another, the prosecution of President Spanier, the vilification of Joe Paterno, and unmeasurable damage to the University, the football program, its coaches, and this community.

"By your silence, you have made yourself complicit with the Freeh Report. Many are of the opinion that the money that has been squandered is the underlying factor that prevents the Board from acknowledging the truth. Regardless, the Board and President Barron need to stand up and publicly reject the Freeh Report.

"Truth, transparency, and integrity are critical to the University’s mission. Embracing the “montra” that time will erase the memory of this catastrophe is false. It will not go away. Ladies and Gentlemen – by the very nature of your position, you control our legacy and future. We have been wronged by many people and are hurting as a result. You can take a big step toward the healing process. Please do the right thing and denounce the Freeh Report."

Thursday, May 2

CNN's Biased Coverage of Spanier Case

CNN continues its bias against all things Penn State as it promoted the factually challenged statement of AG Josh Shapiro and hasn't published the Spanier response

Ray Blehar
May 2, 2019,10:55 AM EDT

Over the last several years, CNN has relied on anonymous sources, single sources, and unquestionably unreliable and biased sources in its coverage of all things related to Joe Paterno and Penn State. 

This practice dates back (at least)  to June 2012 when Susan Candiotti was told about excerpts of PSU emails and spewed forth the PA Attorney General's preferred narrative when it came to interpreting their meaning.

Yesterday, CNN's Madeline Holcomb, with support from three other reporters not named Sara Ganim, gave rather biased coverage that was favorable to PA Attorney General Josh Shapiro's factually challenged press release regarding his alleged intent to appeal the court's decision to vacate the verdict against former PSU President Graham Spanier

Of course, CNN didn't fact check any of the quotes they used from Shapiro's release, thus repeating the following falsehood:

"As the Pennsylvania Supreme Court has made crystal clear, Spanier's conduct was illegal," 

The fact was/is that the PA Supreme Court never ruled on the merits of the case.

Wednesday, May 1

Spanier Response to Shapiro Statement

Statement of Graham B. Spanier’s Attorneys Samuel W. Silver and Bruce P. Merenstein
 in Response to Statement of Attorney General Josh Shapiro

We are dismayed that the Pennsylvania Attorney General, the highest law enforcement official in the state, would blatantly and prejudicially misrepresent facts in a public announcement of his intent to appeal the federal court’s ruling that Graham Spanier’s conviction violated the United States Constitution.

Contrary to Attorney General Shapiro’s statement, there is no evidence that Graham Spanier was personally advised that children were being sexually abused.  And Attorney General Shapiro knows that the Pennsylvania Supreme Court made nothing crystal clear about Dr. Spanier’s conduct, as it did not hear this case on the merits at any time.

We are stunned that Mr. Shapiro accuses Dr. Spanier of engaging in a “cover-up,” when a jury expressly acquitted Dr. Spanier of having engaged in a conspiracy or a continuing course of conduct. 

We will continue to defend Dr.  Spanier against this overzealous and unlawful prosecution.  And we will continue to do so in the courts, where the dispute belongs — and not through hyperbolic statements like that of the Attorney General.

Shapiro Press Release on Spanier Conviction Is Nonsense

The PA Attorney General's announcement to appeal the Spanier decision is filled with lies and half truths

Ray Blehar
May 1, 2019, 1:35 PM EDT, Updated at 6:30 PM EDT

Unwilling to admit defeat, corrupt Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro allegedly intends to appeal the Federal court's ruling on the Spanier case.

Yesterday's ruling confirmed that former Penn State University President (PSU) Graham Spanier's Constitutional Rights were violated due to the ex post facto application of the child endangerment statute.

It is unclear at this time how Shapiro is going to appeal this ruling, but his press release makes it clear that he intends to ignore the law and evidence to make his case.   See below (my emphasis added):

Spanier Verdict Vacated

U.S. Magistrate Karoline Mehalchick ruled that Spanier's Constitutional Rights were violated by the Pennsylvania Office of Attorney General

Ray Blehar
May 1, 2019, 8:35 AM EDT

Finally, some justice.

Former Penn State University (PSU) President Graham Spanier and his legal team battled for nearly six years to have the courts dismiss the charges of Endangering the Welfare of a Child (EWOC) on the grounds that it was an ex post facto application of the law.   Numerous judges in the Pennsylvania courts either dismissed the motions, refused to rule on them, and in the case of the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, refused to hear the argument.

But yesterday, a Federal Judge ruled that Spanier's rights were indeed violated when then Attorney General Linda Kelly allowed prosecutors to charge Spanier with a 2007 version of the EWOC statute for an incident occurring in 2001.  She vacated the trial verdict.

The Pennsylvania Office of Attorney General (PA OAG) has 90 days to retry Spanier.

Wednesday, March 27

Baldwin & Fina May Face Censure

The Office of Disciplinary Counsel recommends public rebuke for Frank Fina and Cynthia Baldwin over their misconduct in cases of Curley, Schultz, and Spanier

Ray Blehar
March 27, 2019, 9:09 AM EDT

On Monday, the Pennsylvania Office of Disciplinary Counsel (ODC) recommended that former Office of Attorney General (OAG) prosecutor Frank Fina be censured for making misrepresentations to the court regarding the scope of questions he would ask former Penn State University (PSU) General Counsel Cynthia Baldwin regarding her representation of former University officials.   

The recommendation to censure Fina comes on the heels of a prior ODC ruling that Baldwin also be censured for violating attorney-client privilege when she failed to give proper warning to former PSU President Graham Spanier and former administrators Timothy Curley and Gary Schultz that she was representing the University, and not them in an individually capacity.  

Baldwin & Fina's face rebuke for misconduct regarding the cases of former PSU officials

Thursday, February 28

Sandusky presser was full of errors

If Jerry Sandusky gets a new trial, he needs to pray that Al Lindsay learns the facts about what really happened at the June 2012 trial and a lot of other information.

Ray Blehar

February 28, 2019, 8:20 PM EST, Updated March 1 at 9:35 AM EST

As reported three days ago, Sandusky's defense attorney Al Lindsay has a shot at getting a new trial due to Brady violations by prosecutors.   However, if a new trial is granted he needs to avoid repeating the failed arguments and falsehoods that caused him to lose almost every appeal issue in the PCRA.

In short, he needs to learn about who he is defending, what really happened at the trial, and what happened during the Sandusky investigation.  He apparently doesn't know those facts right now --  if he actually believed the remarks he and other panelists made at Monday's press conference.

Tuesday, February 26

PSU's Pathetic Response to the A7 Report

The official PSU response to the release of the A7 report was pathetic and dishonest

Ray Blehar
February 26, 2019, 10:29 PM EST

As expected, the University's pathetic response to the leaked report of the alumni-elected trustees (A7) report stated it didn't reflect the position of the University or the PSU BOT. 

Of course it didn't.

The University and BOT have refused to review the Freeh Report, let alone take a position on it.

That happened to be the only true statement in the official response (below).

"The public disclosure of this unauthorized report in apparent violation of court-ordered confidentiality is reprehensible. We wish to make clear the report does not represent the position or opinions of the Penn State Board of Trustees or the University in any way. It is the expression of the personal opinions of the authorsIt is also important to understand the University obtained a confidentiality order for the Freeh materials from a court in order to protect and promote a culture that asks employees to tell the truth and to speak up and report wrongdoing when they see it, without fear of retaliation. Finding the truth is dependent on such a commitment of confidentiality. This leak undermines these values and discourages a culture of reporting at Penn State. Furthermore, it is unfair to the men and women who provided information to Judge Freeh and his team, with an understanding that what they said to the interviewer would be maintained in confidence to the extent possible." 

The release of the A7 report was reprehensible?

Not in comparison to the lies put forth in the statement, especially those about protecting and promoting a culture that asks employees to tell the truth and speak up.

Monday, February 25

Sandusky's "Hail Mary" is Brady

Jerry Sandusky's attorney will use Brady violations in long-shot request for new trial

Ray Blehar
February 25, 2019, 9:08 PM, EST, Updated 9:40 PM EST

In a small meeting room at the Country Garden Inn of State College,  Sandusky's defense attorney Al Lindsay stated he would utilize Brady violations by the Office of Attorney General (OAG) as a means to get a new trial.

Lindsay was the headliner of a panel that included former NCIS Agent John Snedden, independent author/blogger Ralph Cipriano of BigTrial,net,  and former Penn State University assistant football coach Dick Anderson.  The panel was emceed by WRSC radio's Jeff Byers -- a friend and ardent supporter of the Sandusky family. 

While Lindsay appeared not to have a complete strategy in place at the moment for his request to the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, he offered that in order to win a new trial he had to prove that judicial precedence was violated at the June 2012 trial.   Brady v. Maryland requires that the prosecution must turn over all exculpatory evidence that might exonerate the defendant. 

Lindsay argued, and won, that Brady was violated in Sandusky's Post Conviction Relief Appeal (PCRA).  Specifically, he argued that the interview notes showing that the accusers had changed their stories several times prior to trial should have been part of discovery for the case.   

Even though he won on that specific argument, the Superior Court argued that the violations were not significant and that Sandusky's trial attorney was able to use the new/different testimony from the witnesses in an effort to impeach them. 

Winning a decision for a new trial based upon the Brady violations could be a long-shot. 

Sunday, February 17

Freeh's Desperate Arguments About the A7 Report

Louis Freeh's arguments in rebutting the A7 report appear to be the act of a desperate man who will stop at nothing to defend his reputation and the indefensible findings of the Freeh Report.   

Ray Blehar
February 17, 2019, 10:07 AM EST

Former FBI Director Louis Freeh's statement regarding the leaked report by the Penn State University's (PSU) alumni-elected trustees (A7) contains arguments that fabricate information, dishonestly characterize or otherwise ignore the evidence on the record, and suspend the law and logic in order to desperately defend his unearned reputation and the dubious findings of the Freeh Report.

Freeh desperation is also demonstrated by the frequency of ad hominem attacks on those who dare to criticize his report or its findings. 

There is no better example of this than in paragraph 10, where Freeh calls alumni "deniers" for their well-reasoned argument that PSU officials had no reason to suspect that Jerry Sandusky was a serial child molester after he was found not to be a danger to children by child protective services (CPS) and found (by police and the district attorney) not to have committed crimes when he showered with a boy in 1998. 

Shockingly, Freeh's argument in paragraph 11 eliminates
 a citizen's rights to due process rights and contends a person is guilty despite insufficient evidence to support a charge.  And further contends that Sandusky was a known pedophile in 1998 despite all evidence to the contrary.   

The entire statement is a shining example of how Freeh's findings were infected with hindsight bias and completely disregarded the legal processes and requirements involved in an investigation of suspected child sexual abuse.

Complete Analysis of Freeh 2.6.2019 Statement

Ray Blehar
February 17, 2019, 9:28 AM EST, Updated 2/18/19 at 2PM EST

Former FBI Director Louis Freeh's statement regarding the Penn State University's (PSU) alumni-elected trustees' critique of the Freeh Report uses the same faulty reasoning he used back in 2012 in an attempt to defend the his report's findings.

The arguments made by Freeh fit the following descriptions: completely false; mostly false; based on minority, isolated opinions;  rife with hindsight bias; legally insufficient or legally inappropriate; ad hominem attacks on individuals, and inculpatory in nature. 

Recall that the Freeh Report's standard of evidence was that a reasonable person would draw the conclusion based on the evidence.  As you will read below, little to nothing he puts forth meets that standard.

Thursday, February 14

Freeh: No Evidence of Protecting "JP or the Football Program"

The alumni-elected trustees report confirmed that Freeh and his team knew their findings were on shaky ground -- but they chose to align with the prevailing narrative instead of following the evidence 

Ray Blehar
February 14, 2019, 11:40 AM EST

After WJAC's report on leaked alumni-elected trustees critique of the Freeh Report, the true "deniers" quickly appeared on the scene to denounce and criticize the report. 

Mark Dambly and Eric Barron stated the report merely reflects the opinions of its authors, while Louis Freeh's statement accused the authors of "blindly disregarding the incontrovertible facts."

Given the speed of the response from key "denier" Freeh, it was obvious he responded without reading the alumni report.  In fact, his rebuttal states he hadn't obtained a copy of it.

As it turns out, Freeh will be surprised to learn he is the alumni report's star witness.

No Evidence of Protecting "JP or the Football Program"

Page 29 of the alumni report refers to a late June 2012 discussion of the draft Freeh Report, where Freeh commented:

"I understand -- there is a stronger case to be made for "protecting the university" than JP or the 'Football Program' -- which is never really articulated in any of the evidence I've seen."

Saturday, February 2

The Ropes & Gray Report on Nassar is Nonsense, Harmful

The Ropes & Gray report on the Nassar scandal is a public relations document for the sole purpose of "corporate cleansing." Its findings and conclusions are nonsense and repeat the same mistakes of the Freeh Report.  It seems entirely appropriate that I publish this column on Groundhog's Day.

Ray Blehar
February 2, 2019, 5:20 PM, Updated 5:51 PM

On January 2018, nearly 160 women came forward to tell their stories of victimization at the hands of former medical doctor Larry Nassar.   

Many of the women spoke out were athletes.  Some were very famous former Olympic gymnasts.  

The sentencing caused a scandal that wasn't at all about sports (but wrongly focused on sports all along) became focused on elite women's gymnastics. 

Shortly after the sentencing concluded, the United States Olympic Committee (USOC) hired the Ropes and Gray (R&G) law firm to conduct a so-called independent investigation to determine who received reports about Nassar's and what they did with the information.  

USOC stated:

“Ropes & Gray will have full discretion to conduct the investigation and make findings in whatever way Ms. McPhee and Mr. Dowden decide is appropriate,” said Susanne Lyons, the independent director of the USOC who is leading the board’s special committee.

“Ropes & Gray will prepare a written report, which will be released in its entirety to the public. The investigation will be professional, independent and thorough, and will take as long as necessary to get to the truth.

“The United States Olympic Committee pledges its full support to Ropes & Gray and will provide access to relevant documents and witnesses. USA Gymnastics (USAG) has confirmed that it will do the same.

“Once the investigation is complete and the report has been published, we will work diligently to ensure that appropriate action is taken based on the facts that emerge.”

“We must ensure that a tragedy of this magnitude can never happen again.”

The USOC announcement wasn't met with confidence from the gymnasts/survivors from the Nassar case.   They refused to speak with R&G because of their concerns over the independence of the investigation (at 15).

Their concerns were on the mark.

Sunday, January 20

Distant Replay: Success With Honor thwarted NCAA, BOT

The PSU BOT's and the NCAA's plan to cripple the Nittany Lion football program failed because they believed Joe Paterno had recruited merely football players

Ray Blehar
January 20, 2019, 9:50 AM EST

On the Friday after the Freeh Report was released to the public, former Penn State University (PSU) President Rodney Erickson and NCAA President Mark Emmert began collaborating to solve alleged cultural issues with the football program that allegedly enabled Jerry Sandusky's serial sexual victimization of children.  By Monday, Erickson had a list of proposed penalties in his hands.    

According to the deposition of former PSU Board of Trustees (BOT) chairman Keith Masser, the former PSU president informed  him on Tuesday or Wednesday that PSU and the NCAA were negotiating from a list of possible sanctions.  Consistent with Masser's deposition, Gene Marsh (who was purportedly representing PSU in the negotiations) also recalled that the list of penalties was delivered to him on Tuesday. 

Those lists did not include a death penalty -- and to Masser's recollection, a death penalty could only come as a result of the NCAA conducting its normal investigation process.  Masser's recollection was confirmed in emails by former NCAA Executive Committee Chair Ed Ray and NCAA General Counsel Donald Remy. 

So why didn't the PSU BOT, who undoubtedly knew that an NCAA investigation would find nothing in the way of violations, opt for a NCAA investigation? 

Sunday, January 13

The NCAA's blind eye to Michigan State

While the NCAA had to fabricate a rule in order to sanction Penn State athletics, you don't have to read very far into the Division I Manual to find rules rules violations at Michigan State

Ray Blehar
January 13, 2019. 9:27 AM EST, Updated 1/14/19 at 4:49 PM EST

In July 2012, the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) announced draconian sanctions against Penn State University (PSU) based on allegations of a "lack of institutional integrity."  The move was unprecedented (and legally questionable) given that  a search of the NCAA Division I manual revealed that no such terminology or rule existed.

Evidence confirms that Emmert and the NCAA fabricated a rule in order to sanction Penn State

NCAA President Mark Emmert and other senior staff members fabricated the terminology in order to punish PSU for the acts of a Pillar of the Community sex offender who went undetected -- by everyone -- for decades.  However, when a similar situation occurred at Michigan State University (MSU) involving gymnastics trainer Larry Nassar, the NCAA turned a blind eye to its own rules to give the East Lansing school a pass.