Sat November 5, 2011
Penn State Ex-Coach Charged In Child Sex Case
Penn State athletic director Tim Curley and another school administrator were charged Saturday with perjury and failure to report in an investigation into allegations that former football defensive coordinator Jerry Sandusky sexually abused eight young men, state prosecutors said.
Sandusky, 67, of State College, was arrested Saturday and released on $100,000 bail, the attorney general's office said. Curley, 57, and Penn State vice president for finance and business Gary Schultz, 62, both of Boalsburg, were expected to turn themselves in Monday in Harrisburg. Schultz's position includes oversight of the university's police department.
Closely identified with the school's reputation as a defensive powerhouse and a program that produced top-quality linebackers, Sandusky retired in 1999. Longtime head coach Joe Paterno, who has more victories than any coach in the history of Division I football, was not charged, authorities said. When Paterno first learned of one report of abuse he immediately reported it to Curley, prosecutors said.
Sandusky, who worked with at-risk children through his Second Mile organization, was charged with seven counts of involuntary deviate sexual intercourse; eight counts of corruption of minors, eight counts of endangering the welfare of a child, seven counts of indecent assault and other offenses. A preliminary hearing for Sandusky is scheduled for Wednesday.
Attorney General Linda Kelly called him "a sexual predator who used his position within the university and community to repeatedly prey on young boys."
The grand jury identified eight young men who were targets of sexual advances or assaults by Sandusky from 1994 to 2009, prosecutors said.
As stunning as the charges were the names implicated at a school where the football program is known for its consistency as much as its success — a big change this year was the removal of white trim from players' uniforms.
"It is also a case about high-ranking university officials who allegedly failed to report the sexual assault of a young boy after the information was brought to their attention, and later made false statements to a grand jury," Kelly said.
Prosecutors said all of the young men first encountered Sandusky through Second Mile.
A grand jury report, which recommended charges, said the first to come to light was a boy who met Sandusky when he was 11 or 12. The boy received expensive gifts and trips to sports events from Sandusky, and physical contact began during his overnight stays at Sandusky's home, jurors said. Sandusky was banned from the child's school district in Clinton County in 2009, after his mother reported alleged sexual assault to his high school. That triggered the state investigation that culminated in charges Saturday.
Kelly said that seven years before that, in 2002, a graduate assistant saw Sandusky sexually assault a naked boy, estimated to be about 10 years old, in the locker room of the Lasch Football Building on campus. The grad student and his father reported what he saw to Paterno, who immediately told Curley, prosecutors said.
Curley and Schultz met with the graduate assistant about a week and a half later, Kelly said.
"Despite a powerful eyewitness statement about the sexual assault of a child, this incident was not reported to any law enforcement or child protective agency, as required by Pennsylvania law," Kelly said. "Additionally, there is no indication that anyone from the university ever attempted to learn the identity of the child ... or made any follow-up effort to obtain more information from the person who witnessed the attack."
The jury said Curley lied when he testified repeatedly that he was never told Sandusky had engaged in sexual misconduct with a child, Kelly said, adding that portions of Schultz's testimony also were not deemed credible by the jury.
Penn State president Graham Spanier called the allegations against Sandusky "troubling" but said Curley and Schultz had his unconditional support and he predicted they will be exonerated.
"I have known and worked daily with Tim and Gary for more than 16 years," he said. "I have complete confidence in how they handled the allegations about a former university employee."
Sandusky, once considered a potential successor to Paterno, drew up the defenses for the Nittany Lions' national-title teams in 1982 and 1986. The team is enjoying another successful run this season; at 8-1, Penn State is ranked No. 16 in the AP Top 25 and is the last undefeated squad in Big Ten play. The Nittany Lions were off Saturday.