The judge who presided over the grand jury investigation of Jerry Sandusky and senior Penn State officials denied Tuesday motions to throw out pieces of evidence against the men before a preliminary hearing, saying their lawyers are using stall tactics to delay the case.
In a 16-page ruling, Feudale singled out one issue in making his decision: whether he has the jurisdiction to entertain such motions.
The judge also denied a motion to throw out the grand jury testimonies of Spanier and former university general counsel Cynthia Baldwin as well as to bar Baldwin from taking the stand during a yet-unscheduled preliminary hearing.
“In the view of this court, the motions extant are in effect legal chimera’s (sic),” Feudale wrote, calling them “concepts perceived by this (j)udge as legally creative, imaginative but implausible and serve only to delay the administration of justice in this simple case involving whether Spanier, Curley and Schultz did or did not commit the crimes alleged.”
The judge’s ruling would appear to give the Curley, Schultz and Spanier cases the green light to proceed to a preliminary hearing in a case that has been on hold since the men were arraigned in suburban Harrisburg in November. The men were indicted using Baldwin’s testimony as well as evidence that was turned up in the Freeh report.
The defense lawyers had argued in court papers that Baldwin violated attorney-client privilege when she testified to the grand jury against the men. The lawyers also have said their clients thought Baldwin was representing them at the grand jury, but Baldwin has said she was representing the interests of Penn State.
Feudale’s decision came after the prosecuting attorneys and the defense lawyers gave oral arguments Jan. 24. The judge also said his decision was based on an “extensive and careful review” of records related to the case.
Feudale firmly believed he does not have the jurisdiction to handle the requests. Instead, his role as the supervising judge of the grand jury is to keep its proceedings secret, and his duties ended when he accepted the grand jury presentment that a majority of the grand jurors approved by a vote.
Feudale said even if he had jurisdiction, he does not think the defense lawyers’ motions have legal merit.
“Even if attorney Baldwin exercised poor judgment and/or improper ethical conduct in her handling of the Sandusky investigation; such does not (in this court’s view) provide a defense to any crimes,” Feudale wrote.
Feudale said he does not believe Baldwin violated attorney-client privilege, and the appropriate course for that would be to take the matter to the attorney disciplinary board or a civil court — not a grand jury.
Middle States is The Middle States Commission on Higher Education
Hmmmmmm Wichita State. Louisville. Michigan. Syracuse.
These will be the four schools squaring off today to decide which teams will make up the national title game Monday night.
Mark Emmert‘s Final Four news conference even had little to do with the upcoming national semifinals. It was mostly him defending his past after a troubling report about his career as a university president was released earlier this week. The NCAA president even got into it with CBS Sports reporter Dennis Dodd, who has said in recent months that Emmert should step down. Wichita State, Huh–Emmert and Triponey!! Syracuse, hey Bernie!!–
Guess who was the President of the Middle States in 2012 that threatened Penn State? Barbara Gildenstein, president of the College of New Jersey under whom Vicky Triponey serves as Vice President of Student Affairs. Middle States accuses Penn Sate of potentially violating four different areas of their accreditation requirements, relating to the following:
■Compliance with all applicable government policies, regulations, and requirements. (Affiliation 5)
■Institution’s governing body responsibility for the quality and integrity of the institution, for ensuring that the institution’s mission is being carried out, and for making freely available to the Commission accurate, fair, and complete information on all aspects of the institution and its operations. (Affiliation 9)
■Leadership and Governance (Standard 4)
■Integrity (Standard 6)
Triponey was a lightning rod for controversy due to her policy implementations at both Penn State and before that the University of Connecticut. Spanier hired Triponey in 2003 knowing her controversial background at UConn (hired by Mark Emmert); he supported her actions vis-a-vis Paterno for a time; and the biggest clashes came after the 2004 season when Spanier had tried to strong-arm Paterno’s resignation, or at least get Paterno to plan a retirement timeline. The team started winning again in the 2005 season, and after that Spanier appears to have stopped supporting Triponey, i.e. he gave up trying to get Paterno to retire, for the time being at least. By 2007 Triponey was out at PSU.
In one email to Spanier in Sept. 2005 she wrote, “I do not support the way this man is running our football program.” Um, whose football program?
Did Paterno cause Triponey’s demise at Penn State? Almost certainly.
Did Paterno have a reputation for using his power to fire people, or get them fired? No, he didn’t.
Could Paterno wield his clout forcefully? Yes.
Vicky L. Triponey of Wichita State University has been named vice chancellor for student affairs at the University of Connecticut, Chancellor Mark Emmert has announced. Triponey, who is interim vice president for student affairs at Wichita State, will join UConn March 31. She will report to Emmert.
2003 Vicky Triponey came to Penn State from UConn
Triponey was hired in 2003 by Graham Spanier after a rocky and controversial stint at the University of Connecticut. Within months of her arrival at Penn State she began a campaign aimed at consolidating power within her Office of Student Affairs and crushing or eliminating anything or anyone that challenged that power. (note: this is also Mark Emmert’s tenure which is now under review and scrutiny by USAToday).
In a series of emails to Dr. Spanier, Triponey insisted that she alone had the responsibility to discipline the players involved and indicated that suspension or expulsion was called for. Joe Paterno pointed out that since the incidents were off-campus and everyone involved was facing criminal trials, it was necessary to wait for DUE PROCESS to take its course
When I served as the Graduate Student Association president, I was a very outspoken opponent of FAB. In particular that these students were not elected, and that university employees would hold 40 percent of the voting power. That meant that they had only to convince 20 percent of the students to agree with their voting bloc.
Not only did I voice my concern as a member of the Cabinet of Student Leaders, but I also put every monkey wrench in the system that I could as a member of the Student Activity Fee Board. In order for Triponey to wrestle control of student money away from students, they had to amend the “Guiding Principles” of the activity fee.
I was personally intimidated by Triponey, who threatened that by announcing the proposed changes to the Guiding Principles, I was disseminating confidential information and suggested that I be remanded by Judicial Affairs (funny that I was a member of that steering committee as well).
I informed Triponey & Co. that I was the president of a branch of the student government. As such, any communication with me was also a communication with the 10,000 graduate students across the university. They have a right to know about the dealings of their elected officials and their activity fee funds.
After reading many of the Collegian Articles during 2006, it appears that Triponey’s main effort was to wrestle student control of student activities away and into the hands of salaried individuals. Money was severely cut to student organizations, USG disappeared, etc, etc. Ms Triponey also attempted to take over control of student discipline, a move that was opposed by faculty and staff – not just Joe Paterno!
Dr. Spanier asked for her resignation, acknowledging the mistake he had made four years earlier.
Now, fast forward to 2011–Mark Emmert and Vicky Triponey–Payback time!! Vicky Triponey’s issues with Joe Paterno get full coverage with the Freeh Report AND Mark Emmert who is now conveniently at the NCAA–Mark Emmert hasn’t stayed in one place too long, either!! Check out his work history–and a disaster occurred everywhere he went–Scandal and Dirt left everywhere in his wake!! (note: I have heard from Vicky Triponey and she states that she and Mark Emmert have had no communication in at least 10 years). Her employment history below:
Interim Vice President for Student Affairs
The College of New Jersey
January 2012– Present (1 year 4 months)Ewing, NJ–took Vicky 4 years to find a job!! She applied for and was rejected for other positions during the 4 year hiatus!
Vice President for Student Affairs
Penn State University
July 2003– July 2008 (5 years 1 month)
Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs
University of Connecticut
April 1998– June 2003 (5 years 3 months)
Interim Vice President for Student Affairs
Wichita State University
July 1997– April 1998 (10 months)
Associate Vice President for Campus Life
Wichita State University
September 1994– July 1997 (2 years 11 months)
Assoc. Dean of Student Life and Services
Wichita State University
June 1989– September 1994 (5 years 4 months)
Coordinator of Student Orgs. & Media
University of Georgia
March 1983– August 1986 (3 years 6 months)
Asst to Dean of Student Life/Dir of Orientation
University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown
February 1980– March 1983 (3 years 2 months)
Posted on March 10th, 2013 in News and Commentary
“Let me be clear – we got this wrong.”
“None of us are proud of how we handled this.”
by Bill Keisling
Penn State trustee Stephanie Nolan Deviney is up for reelection to the school’s governing Board of Trustees. On March 9, on her webpage, she responded to the following question: What was your thought process with respect to Coach Paterno?
“PLEASE NOTE: THE THOUGHTS BELOW ARE MY OWN, NOT THAT OF THE BOARD. EACH BOARD MEMBER HAS THEIR OWN REASON FOR MAKING THE DECISION. I DO NOT SPEAK FOR THEM. ALSO, I AM NOT TRYING TO LAY BLAME OR MAKE EXCUSES. I AM ONLY TRYING TO ANSWER THE QUESTIONS YOU HAVE ASKED.
“Saturday, November 5, 2011, I received an email from a fellow PSU grad at approximately 3 p.m. with a messaging along the lines of ‘I bet you never thought you signed up for this!’ There was also an email from the university scheduling a conference call. Realizing something was going on I googled ‘Penn State’. This is how I learned the news.
“I immediately searched the web and found the presentment. I read the entire thing by our 5 p.m. call. When I read the presentment my initial reaction was that we needed to determine who knew what and when. The Presentment stated that Coach Paterno had been told of activity “of a sexual nature” between Sandusky and a young boy. During our call we planned a meeting for 7 p.m. the next evening.
“When I arrived at Old Main I was given a press release that had been issued by the Paternos. I asked if the press release had been run by anyone at the university before it was issued. I was told it had not been run by the university. When the decision was made to cancel the regularly scheduled press conference, there was no agreement with this decision. Instead, the press was told to stay tuned as plans were in the works for an off campus press conference (no such conference ever took place).
“At that time it was clear that the university’s interests and Coach Paterno’s interests were not aligned. We should have been working together on this issue – the biggest crisis the university had ever faced. Rather, we were two ships not communicating with one another. I did not think these actions were in the best interests of the university. My decision to remove Coach Paterno as head coach was largely based on the events that transpired after the presentment was issued.
“The trustees had a call on Tuesday night during which time I thought we would decide what actions to take with respect to Coach Paterno and Graham Spanier. However, many trustees thought that such a decision could not be made over the phone. Rather, we needed to be face to face, to look each other in the eye, to read each other’s body language in making such a monumental decision. We agreed to make the decision on Wednesday night when we met in person.
“I could not sleep that night as the decisions weighed heavily on my mind. I did not know what other trustees were going to decide. I appreciate all this University has done for the Commonwealth. I appreciate all Joe Paterno has done for Penn State. I understood what Penn State meant to so many people. I understood the magnitude of the decisions we would make the next day. No matter what we decided, we would forever change people’s lives, Penn State, and history. This decision was left in the hands of 32 people. I was one of them.
“On Wednesday Coach Paterno announced his retirement without consulting with the university.
“By Wednesday evening none of the trustees thought that the football season could go on “business as usual” with Coach Paterno on the sidelines and in front of the press. As such, we made the decision to remove him as head coach for the remainder of the season. We did honor his contract. Yes, I have seen the letter that Cynthia Baldwin sent to him. It should not have been sent to him.
“It seems so clear now that the university and Coach Paterno should have been speaking to each other and working with each other during those five days. Looking back it seems unbelievable that neither side communicated with one another. I often think of how things might have been different if any small changes were made that week. Posnanski recently wrote that after reading the presentment, Coach Paterno’s own family told him that he might have to face the possibility of never coaching another game. Under such circumstances it saddens me that we didn’t find a way to handle this better. We both should have been working together. When we made out decision, it was around 9 p.m. at night. It has also been widely reported why we made the decision to call his home. First, there were news vans and students surrounding his home. We did not think it was appropriate to have such a message be delivered so publicly. It surely would have been caught on camera. No one would have liked that either. Second, we did not think we could wait until the morning as many details of our meetings that week were reaching the press. The last thing we wanted was for Coach Paterno to hear the news from the press. Let me be clear – we got this wrong.
“I agree 100 percent with Sue Paterno’s statement – Joe Paterno did deserve more.” (sorry, Stephanie, too little too late–where have you been for the past year and a half? Why were you and Paul Suhey not out there with McCombie and Lubrano asking the important questions?)
“Every board member has a tremendous amount of respect and admiration for all that Joe Paterno and his family did, and continue to do, for our university. He influenced and molded countless men. He and Sue were generous with their time, money, and talent. You may wonder how we could all feel this way and still remove him as head coach but as fiduciaries we had to make the decisions in the best interests of the University.”
editor note: it is my opinion that the Board of Trustees (John Surma) had a vendetta against Joe Paterno to not only fire him but to destroy his reputation, and that was the goal (not necessarily known by the general board membership).
Excerpt from Clemente Section of Paterno Report:
I have no interest in or connection with Penn State football, I had no personal or professional interaction with Joe Paterno, and I have not followed his career in any way or seen any game that he coached. I do not follow college or professional football. Though I am being paid for my time to research and write this report, I have maintained independence while conducting my review of the Freeh investigation and supplementing it with my own investigation.
After reading the Freeh report in its entirety, I now know that the Freeh investigation made a number of errors, including its failure to properly consider the behavioral dynamics of the offender, the victims, and witnesses within the context of acquaintance child sexual victimization.
Investigating this type of crime is markedly counter-intuitive and investigators and the public need to have a deep understanding of these behavioral dynamics before they can understand and properly interpret the information and behavior presented in this case. It is precisely because this information is not within the general knowledge of the average person/juror, that local, state, and federal courts admit the testimony of expert witnesses, like myself, to explain to jurors the complicated behavioral dynamics of “preferential child sex offenders,” “nice-guy” acquaintance offenders, “grooming,” and “compliant victimization.” In fact, the SIC report does not once mention “preferential child sex offenders,” “nice-guy” acquaintance offenders, or “compliant victimization,” and uses the term “grooming” only once without applying this critical behavioral reality to their analysis. By not factoring in thesedynamics, the Freeh report got it wrong.
While I authored this report at the behest of the representatives of the Paterno family, it is not just about Joe Paterno. This report is about finding the truth and educating the public about acquaintance child sexual victimization in the real world. This report does not take the focus away from the victims; it restores that focus. As an expert in this field, and as a former victim, I can attest that one of the worst things professionals, the media, and the public can do in the aftermath of the discovery of nice-guy offenders, like Sandusky, is to perpetuate the myth that his victims must have been frightened, threatened, or physically forced into sexual behavior with him.This practice, though well-meaning, hurts those children who became compliant intheir victimizationbecause this type of offender actually takes the opposite approach and treatsthem well, is kind to them, pays attention to them, shows them affection, makes them feel special, and/or gives them gifts. Another hurtful practice is talking about how horrendous,horrific, or life-changing these crimes were to the victims. The more we amplify what happened to the victims with emotional rhetoric, the more they and other victims in the general public feel damaged by what they have endured. They feel a sense of futility about ever being whole again. They feel the obstacles to leading happy and healthy lives are insurmountable. And most unfortunately, as a result of both of these practices, they and other victims are less likely to come forward.
The sad truth is that as you read this analysis, there are thousands of acquaintance offenders similar to Sandusky sexually victimizing children in communities across this country. These “nice-guy” offenders are getting away with it because they appear to be good people who genuinely care about children. These “nice-guy” offenders escape detection even by those who are vigilant because they are on the look out for evil predators, not pillars of the community. Unless everyone in the public takes on the responsibility to educate themselves about the dynamics of acquaintance child sexual victimization, “nice-guy” offenders will continue victimizing children undetected and undeterred. For that reason, paying attention to the details of this analysis, sharing its contents with everyone you know, engaging in an age-appropriate open dialogue with children, however difficult, and investigating those who exhibit red flag warning signs, will go a long way towards eliminating this type of offending behavior.
Sandusky is a textbook preferential child sex offender, as well as being a textbook example of a “nice-guy” offender. However, I would put him in the top one percent of effective groomers in this country. This is based on the fact thathe was so bold in his high-profile “altruistic” public persona, he founded a youth serving organization, and he was caught in the act — though cleared at the time — of what turned out to be grooming and sexually assaulting children in the showers in 1998, yet he still did the samething in the same place again in 2001. Sandusky was able to deceive his way out of it. He built his reputation both professionally and interpersonally over many years of hard work and sacrifice. Drive, determination, selflessness, and altruism were his calling cards. He motivated others to give millions to needy children at The Second Mile. Sandusky was lauded and celebrated for his work. He effectively groomed most of the people who came in contact with him, including child care experts, psychologists, professionals, celebrities, athletes, coaches, friends, and family. And most notably, he was approved numerous times over thirty years as both a foster parent and an adoptive parent by child care professionals.
The victims love the offender for the things he has done for them. On the other hand, they hate the offender for the things he has done to them. That’s why the boy in the shower in 2001 kept silent even though McQueary witnessed him being groomed and assaulted by Sandusky. That’s why the nine other victims who testified, or were testified about in Sandusky’s trial, never made an immediate outcry. Even when investigators first came to some of these boys and asked them direct questions, most of them remained silent or denied anything sexual occurred. They claimed that they had not been victimized, when in fact they had. Eventually, most of them made partial or incremental disclosures, and then over time gave a full account of their victimization. It’s called the “conspiracy of silence” that surrounds child sexual victimization. It is the opposite of an “active agreement to conceal.”
The combination of nice-guy acquaintance offending, coupled with the “conspiracy of silence” by victims and “compliant victimization,” is why Paterno did not know that Sandusky was really a child molester. It is why the entire State College community did not know. One astute mother, however, saw a behavioral change in her son and recognized it as a possible sign of victimization and reported Sandusky in 1998. She might have initially bought into Sandusky’s grooming, giving him access to her child hoping the relationship would help her son have a better life. But the behavioral changes her son exhibited after spending an evening with Sandusky triggered her intuition and she fought for her son’s protection. She is a hero. Unfortunately, the system failed her, and her son. We all want to search for the culprit who caused the system to fail. In my professional opinion, the culprit is ignorance of “nice-guy”offending.
One psychologist, trained in the art of deciphering offender behavior, Alycia Chambers,evaluated the boy, saw and recognized all the red flags presented by Sandusky’s behavior, but her report apparently did not receive the attention it deserved. Centre County Children and Youth Services (CYS) referred the case to counselor John Seasock, 20 who, without reading Chamber’s report, evaluated the boy for one hour and then wrote a report concluding nothing improper took place.That is why no one at Penn State did anything to sanction Sandusky. The UniversityPolice Department, the Department of Public Welfare (DPW), and the District Attorney all closed their cases based in large part on Seasock’s report. For those who worked closely with Sandusky and knew about the 1998 incident, the closing of this investigation as unfounded was confirmation of Sandusky’s outstanding reputation and their belief that he was a devoted advocate for children.
Though a trained child sex crimes investigator should have known to keep a close watch on Sandusky from that point forward, civilians generally revert back to the thousands of positive interactions they have had with him and validate the belief in their own minds that they knew Sandusky couldn’t have been a “monster predator.” If he had been, they tell themselves, they would have known. They would have been able to tell the difference between that kind of evil person and the affable Sandusky they knew, whom they viewed as a dedicated husband and father, who fostered and adopted dozens of children, an altruist, who founded a children’s charity, and a professional, who worked for decades as assistant football coach of one of the most successful college teams in the country.
Because of the private and one-on-one nature of the vast majority of child sex crimes, adult offenders know that in most circumstances, if the child makes an allegation against them, they have a higher likelihood of being believed than a troubled youth. And, as the inaction by McQueary and the janitor exhibit, even if adults witness this behavior, they are reticent to get involved or make a detailed report because it is just too difficult to comprehend or believe or talk about what they witnessed. As I will develop in much greater detail below, these complicated dynamics, which so few people understand (and most find completely counter-intuitive) explain why McQueary behaved as he did. They explain why he did not rescue the boy in 2001, and instead, left the scene as quickly as possible. They explain why McQueary had such difficulty recounting what he saw to his father and Dr. Dranov, and even more difficulty speaking about it to Paterno. McQueary likely was relieved when Curley and Schultz did not ask him detailed questions about what he had witnessed. At the time, he was not certain of what he saw because it was so abjectly counter to what he knew about Sandusky and how he expected a child victim to behave. They also explain why McQueary gave Paterno such a watered down and, ultimately, unhelpful version of events.
These complicated dynamics explain why Paterno did not conclude that Sandusky was a child molester, and why Paterno did what he did and nothing more. Paterno did not witness a child being sexually assaulted. Paterno did not have the opportunity that McQueary had to rescue that child while he was being sexually assaulted. Paterno did not have the opportunity to catch Sandusky in the act and restrain him while calling the police. As I’ll discuss in more detail below, Paterno only heard the sketchiest version of what happened from a confused, embarrassed, and reticent McQueary. Paterno could not read McQueary’s mind. He did not know what McQueary actually witnessed, but sensing that McQueary was having so much trouble talking about it and wanting to minimize his distress, Paterno told McQueary that he did not have to speak the details to Paterno, that he did the right thing coming to Paterno, and that Paterno would find the right people for McQueary to report it. Paterno was not an investigator. Paterno had no authority over Sandusky, who had retired two years earlier. Paterno ran into Sandusky infrequently and did not socialize with him. Paterno did his best to address the situation by informing the people at the university who were in a position to deal with Sandusky, and, in fact, who had dealt with Sandusky’s retirement and continued to deal with Sandusky about administrative details.
As it relates to Paterno, there is very little to be said about the 1998 incident. As far as Paterno knew, if he knew anything, it was fully investigated and Sandusky was fully cleared. Had Paterno or anyone else taken any action against Sandusky, as far as they knew, they would be exposing themselves and the university to a lawsuit from Sandusky. Nonetheless, I will discuss the 1998 incident in some detail for two reasons. First, if Paterno did know about the 1998 incident and the fact that Sandusky was investigated and cleared, this likely would have affected Paterno’s understanding of the 2001 incident. Upon hearing the report from McQueary, Paterno could have reasonably believed that Sandusky was simply horsing around with the boy — just like he was determined to have been doing in 1998 — despite the fact that McQueary perceived it as “over the line.”
The allegations of sexual misconduct were fully investigated by the University Police and Public Safety (“University Police Department” or “UPD”), DPW, CYS, and the District Attorney’s Office. The “victim” and Sandusky were repeatedly interviewed at the time and it was determined that Sandusky had no sexual intent and did not commit any crimes. The investigators had evenidentified another boy who recounted virtually the same story as the first boy and they still did not find sexual or criminal intent.Thus, even if the 1998 accusations had been communicated to Paterno, there would simply have been no way for Paterno to know that Sandusky was actually sexually attracted to boys and that he had been sexually victimizing a number of them in secrecy for years. Following the closing of this investigation, UPD Detective Schreffler instructed Sandusky not to shower again with any child.This explicit advice coming from the law enforcement body responsible for policing Penn State — and not simply the head coach —should have put Sandusky on notice that his actions were being scrutinized and dissuaded him from showering with any more boys at Penn State or anywhere else. UPD apparently did nothing else with respect to Sandusky beyond issuing this “advice the members of this approximately 50-man police department were bettertrained in the area of sex crimes and investigations than Paterno. Certainly UPD had the ultimate responsibility to police and secure all facilities on Penn State’s campus. And certainly, UPD had the ultimate responsibility to protect all persons, including children who were guests on campus. Paterno is blamed by the SIC for not instituting his own prevention program, when the very police agency that was charged with conducting, and actually conducted, the 1998 investigation, did absolutely nothing to investigate Sandusky further, to prevent him from bringing children into the showers, or to inform university staff and students about the allegations against Sandusky. That’s because Sandusky was cleared.
Paterno didn’t know about or have access to the 98-page report that the UPD had compiled on the 1998 incident. Paterno didn’t have a team of detectives who presumably were trained to recognize sex offender behavior. Paterno’s profession had nothing at all to do with children, or sex offenders, or investigations, or recognizing the red flags of child sexual victimization. It is incorrect to assert that Paterno, even as head coach and football icon, was in abetter position to keep an investigative eye on Sandusky and prevent him from offending on campus than was the UPD.
The UPD, DPW, CYS, and the DA’s office also should be accused of “callous and shocking” “total disregard for the safety and welfare of Sandusky’s child victims,”or the accusations against Paterno related to the 1998 incident are biased and wrong.
The entire case against Paterno regarding the 2001 Sandusky shower incident hinges on the words of Mike McQueary. Paterno was not an eyewitness. His only basis of knowledge about what Sandusky did in the shower with a boy in February 2001 was the words McQueary chose to tell Paterno at that time. Clearly, those were not the detailed and explicit words McQueary used a decade later when talking to investigators and during his testimony. What is most critical in analyzing Paterno’s subsequent behavior is what McQueary actually communicated to Paterno during that five to ten minute conversation on the morning of Saturday, February 10, 2001. There are no contemporaneous recordings, notes, or confirmatory emails from this meeting, and the documentation that was made closest in time to the actual events was a statement made by McQueary to attorney general investigators, Trooper Rossman and Agent Sassano, almost a decade later on November 22, 2010. Because of the lapse of time between the actual conversation and the documentation thereof, the probability that particular details of this conversation are reliably recalled from memory is very low.
When a layman, like Paterno, hears ambiguous information about an incident that might involve male on male child sexual victimization and “considers” but rejects the possibility of it actually being true, it does not mean that it is an act of deliberate or willful denial or an attempt to conceal. This is especially true when the accused “offender” does not act like a heinous criminal and the alleged “victims” don’t act like he did anything wrong to them at all. What is actually going on with the untrained layman is a common and fundamental misunderstanding of offender and victim behavior and honest disbelief.
We know the following: McQueary walked into the coaches’ locker room between 9:30 and 10:00 on a Friday night. After McQueary passed through the first of two privacy doors to the locker room, he heard the showers running. He then heard what he has variously described as “two or three” “slapping noises,”36 “smackingsounds,”and “rhythmic slapping sounds”38 over the course of a second or two. In McQueary’s words, he “immediately became alerted and kind of — I don’t know — embarrassed that I was walking in on something that I didn’t want to see or walk in on.” At that moment McQueary “thought maybe one of the other people had someone with him in the showers.”McQueary got to his locker and glanced over his right shoulder and, using the reflection of a mirror, looked into the shower. His first glance lasted one to two seconds. In McQueary’s words, “I immediately turned back to my locker, trying to digest what I just saw and making sure I saw what I just saw. . . . I thought maybe I wasn’t seeing what I was seeing.” McQueary then stepped to the side and looked directly into the shower.According to his testimony, McQueary saw Sandusky in the shower with a young boy. Taking into account all of McQueary’s testimony, that’s all the detail he has given about what he actually saw as opposed to what he thought was happening or what he thought he heard, or what he told Paterno. McQueary also testified to what he did not see or hear. He did not see the front of Sandusky or the boy until the two of them were standing three to five feet apart and were facing him. He did not see any genitalia, erection, or insertion. He did not see any fondling. He did not see any sex act. He did not hear any “protests or any verbiage.” McQueary says he was “extremely alarmed, extremely flustered, extremely shocked, all of those things.”He went back to his locker and “tried to think . . . I accentuate the word ‘try.’”McQueary explained, “this is a Penn State football building . . . you don’t register that. .. . I’m used to pressure situations, and I can tell you that’s — that’s more than my brain could handle at that time.” McQueary was so overwhelmed that he described what he had seen as “ridiculous” as opposed to criminal.
Some believe that he wanted to save the name of Penn State football and so he decided to forget what he saw and walk away rather than to act to save the boy or restrain Sandusky. However, if this were true, he would not have attempted to tell five other people about what he saw and he would not have been so upset while he was trying to do so. In my experience the reasonable conclusion is that he was so overwhelmed by what he saw that he was paralyzed with confusion and disbelief. He did not understand how a man he knew and respected could possibly be doing something like that to a boy. He could not understand why the boy was not screaming out in pain or protest, or fighting to free himself. He could not understand why, when faced with a potential rescuer (McQueary), the boy did not even ask for help. He could not understand how Sandusky could just stare at him with a blank expression only seconds after he was apparently sexually assaulting a boy. And he did not understand how any of this could have happened in his own football locker room. Quite simply, in McQueary’s mind, it did not compute.
McQueary was forced to reconcile three things in his mind that he did not know how to reconcile: (1) when he heard the slapping sounds, he expected to see “normal” sexual activity, but what he saw was shocking, (2) he had always known Sandusky as a nice guy, professional, altruistic person, but now he was confronted with the sight of Sandusky apparently sexually assaulting a boy, and (3) the young boy was not fighting, screaming, or attempting to get away — all the things he would expect the victim of a sexual assault to do. At the time, and in the subsequent days, McQueary could not reconcile these things. He knew nothing about preferential sex offenders, grooming, “nice-guy” acquaintance offenders,and compliant victimization. Consequently, he did not rescue the boy. He ran away. He did not go to the campus police, he went to his office and called his dad. McQueary lived on his own, but he did not go home. He went straight to his parents’ house. While McQueary’s actions are confusing to many, in my experience they are typical of someone who is completely baffled and confused by what he saw and consequently he did not have the confidence to report it in detail.
McQueary has consistently testified that he did not tell Paterno any graphic details, so it is highly probable that McQueary did not tell Paterno anything that would have led Paterno to believe that Sandusky was sexually assaulting the boy in the shower.
The following day, McQueary went to Paterno’s house. According to McQueary, he told Paterno that he “saw Jerry with a young boy in the shower and that it was way over the line,”“[t]he rough positioning I would have described but not in very much detail,”“I told him what I had seen, again, on the surface.”However, McQueary has been clear that he did not use the terms “anal,” “intercourse,” sodomy,” or “rape.”McQueary explains he did not give these details “out of respect and just not getting into detail with someone like Coach Paterno,”“in my mind I don’t go to Coach Paterno and go into great detail of sexual acts. I would have never done that with him ever.” In fact, the reason McQueary didn’t want to use sexual terms with Paterno was the very reason why he needed to. Paterno was known as a prude who was uncomfortable talking about sex. Implying a sex act was not enough to undermine Paterno’s years of interactions with Sandusky and Sandusky’s image as a pillar of the community. McQueary needed to be direct, explicit, and comprehensive in his description. If McQueary had simply said to Paterno, “I saw Sandusky having sex with a boy,” then at least Paterno would have known what McQueary meant. Paterno may still have had trouble believing McQueary, but he would at least have been aware of what McQueary was saying.
Sexual behavior is typically very private; criminal sexual behavior is extremely private.McQueary was understandably embarrassed by what he witnessed, and he acted like someone who had never had to talk about this difficult topic before in his life. It apparently was particularly difficult for McQueary to talk to an elder and iconic figure whom he looked up to about the details of sexual activity.
In response, Paterno, trying to spare McQueary from any further distress, told McQueary that he didn’t have to tell Paterno anything else, that McQueary did the right thing bringing it to Paterno, and that it was Paterno’s job to get McQueary together with the right people for McQueary to report it.
What we do know from Paterno’s recounting of events and his later shock and surprise when he finally read McQueary’s statements in the presentment the week of November 7, 2011,was that Paterno did not have any idea that McQueary was trying to tell him that Sandusky was sodomizing the boy or even sexually assaulting the boy. When asked by an investigator if McQueary said there was a sexual act, Paterno responded, “He never said that.” When Paterno finally read the presentment, he asked his son what the word “sodomy” meant. After his son explained it to him, Paterno asked, “Can a man even do that to a boy?” Nonetheless, as Paterno explained, if he had been told that Sandusky was raping a boy, or having sex with a boy in the shower, he “would have gone to the police right then and there, no questions asked.”
It is more reasonable to conclude that these five men did notunderstand the true nature of Sandusky’s actions because McQueary did not convey what he thought he had conveyed to them. That’s because McQueary relied on implication, and deliberately did not use explicit or graphic terms in describing what he thought he witnessed in the shower.
Of those five men, the one who was most prepared for such a situation arguably would be Dr. Dranov. As a medical doctor, he is a mandated reporter, and he acted like one. He asked all the right questions aimed at determining whether McQueary had seen any specific sexual acts. McQueary repeatedly said no and got more upset when Dr. Dranov attempted to get more details out of him. Dr. Dranov then advised McQueary to tell Coach Paterno and did nothing more. Dr.Dranov did not tell McQueary to call the police, he did not call the police himself, and he did not call the Department of Public Welfare. This behavior is consistent with Dr. Dranov deducing at the time that what McQueary had actually witnessed was non-sexual in nature.
Jan. 18 Board of Trustees meeting to be streamed live online
Thursday, January 17, 2013
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. – The Penn State Board of Trustees will hold its regular bi-monthly meeting on Friday, Jan. 18, in Deans Hall at The Penn Stater Conference Center Hotel on the University Park campus. Penn State Public Broadcasting will stream the meeting live at http://wpsu.org/live. The meeting, which begins at 1:30 p.m. with remarks from University President Rodney Erickson, is open to the public. At 3:15 p.m. there will be a public comment period for those who have registered in advance
If you haven’t received a ballot from Penn State, contact the administrative office at Penn State for your ballot.
Alumni may request a nomination or election ballot by sending an e-mail to BOT@psu.edu, including the following information:
- complete name at time of graduation (maiden name included)
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Once your alumni record is qualified, a ballot will be sent to you electronically. Alumni who receive the nomination ballot will automatically receive the election ballot on April 10. There is no need to send additional request to receive a ballot. Alumni who have no internet access must call (814) 865-2521 and provide the above information. Once your alumni record is qualified, a ballot will be mailed to you.
In new briefs filed in Dauphin County court Friday, attorneys for two former Penn State administrators pressed for a hearing on their claims that Athletic Director-on-leave Tim Curley and retired senior vice president Gary Schultz were effectively denied legal counsel when they testified in 2011 before a grand jury investigating the Jerry Sandusky child sex abuse scandal.
The defendants’ have maintained they thought then-University Counsel Cynthia Baldwin was representing them.
Baldwin, however, has argued she represented the administrators only as agents of the university, and has become a likely star witness for the prosecution in its case that Curley and Schultz lied to the grand jury about what they knew of allegations against Sandusky and how they responded to them.
Curley and Schultz’s attorneys have asked for a full hearing before Judge Todd Hoover at which they can present expert testimony about the conflict.
If Hoover finds there was a conflict, the defense has argued, he should at minimum bar prosecutors from using Curley and Schultz’s grand jury testimony at trial, thereby effectively gutting the case against them.
Today’s brief addresses only the original perjury charges filed against Curley and Schultz.
Similar challenges are being waged against perjury counts filed against former Penn State president Graham Spanier, which have not reached the preliminary hearing stage yet.
Erickson’s new salary will now put him in the 50th percentile of base salaries for presidents from institutions similar to Penn State. The increase is performance-based because Erickson’s contract is concerned with salary and a benefits package only.
The salary increase comes after the board conducted an annual performance review that focused on factors such as leadership, planning and resource development, and management of financial resources. The discussion to increase the president’s salary has been under consideration since the summer, said Trustee Anthony Lubrano.
The board recently finalized the discussion to give Erickson an $85,000 raise.
“The entire board had a general discussion in November,” Lubrano said.
Erickson, although a voting member of the Board of Trustees, was not present at the discussion in November, Lubrano said.
Lubrano said that there was no formal vote taken on the salary increase. He said that he was made aware of the increase today.
Although there was no formal vote, Board of Trustees Chairwoman Karen Peetz issued a statement in support of Erickson and the increased salary.
“It is imperative that we have a strong, effective leader to ensure our future excellence. Rod Erickson is that leader,” Peetz said in a press release.