Sep 7, 2012

Democratic Party reveals it's true colors at the convention. Delegates say no to God and turn their back on Israel

This is just unbelievable! How can someone of faith logically support a political party that clearly mocks our religious values. A party that struggles to agree to add God and Jerusalem as the capital of Israel to their party's platform.

My favorite quote is "I guess ah, I guess ah, let me do that one more time". Classic! After watching this, how confident are Americans in President Obama's and the leaders of today's democratic party can lead us forward?

I guess that famous President Obama quote, "They cling to guns or religion", quote now has a whole new meaning for us here in Pennsylvania. Just further evidence that today's democratic party at the core doesn't support the average American, our traditions, our christian faith, or our way of life.

Jul 28, 2012

NCAA's use of Freeh Report to punish Penn State questioned

Guest Column by Travis Waldron

That the NCAA relied heavily on the report produced by former FBI director Louis Freeh and his team to level the Penn State football program earlier this week is hardly a shock or a secret — the report, as NCAA president Mark Emmert said, was “vastly more involved and thorough than any investigation we’ve ever conducted.”

But the Freeh Report, commissioned by Penn State’s Board of Trustees, was never meant to investigate whether the football program violated NCAA rules, according to a source from Freeh’s team reached by the Chronicle of Higher Education.

The Freeh Report, the source said, was an investigation into “how Penn State operated, not how they worked within the NCAA’s system,” and it “was not meant to be used as the sole piece, or the large piece, of the NCAA’s decision-making.” Instead, the source said, the report “was meant to be a mechanism to help Penn State move forward. To be used otherwise creates an obstacle to the institution changing.”

Looking through the Freeh Report, it’s hard to dispute that point. The report is a legal investigation meant to lead to changes that prevent another such institutional failure, and it includes specific recommended changes to Penn State’s administrative and academic culture to achieve that goal. In no way does it examine Penn State’s role within NCAA bylaws or whether it might have broken NCAA rules.

Given that, it seems a thorough investigation into whether, and how, Penn State violated NCAA rules should have been in order, especially before the program was hit with massive fines, bowl bans, and scholarship reductions. Some sort of investigation was begun — Emmert delivered questions to Penn State in November, and the university was reportedly set to deliver its formal response around the time Emmert handed down the sanctions — but it was abruptly aborted, a fact that always seemed odd, especially when Emmert struggled to name specific bylaws Penn State had violated. The reasoning the NCAA uses to justify going forth with the sanctions before it conducted an investigation is shoddy, at best, as Emmert said the Freeh Report provided all the information he and the organization’s Executive Committee needed to know.

The fact is, there are multiple investigations going on at Penn State. To produce the Freeh Report, investigators combed through millions of emails and conducted a thorough investigation. The Department of Education is now carrying out its own investigation into whether Penn State violated federal law by not reporting crimes committed on campus, and deep investigations will continue to take place involving the federal charges facing two former Penn State officials. And the NCAA has even reserved the right to conduct a more complete investigation and bring more punishments to the table for individuals once the legal process is completed.

For whatever reason, though, the only organization to have punished Penn State thus far did not conduct its own investigation and instead relied on a document we now know was used outside its stated purpose. That’s a step that, frankly, does absolutely nothing to dispel the notion that the NCAA has overstepped its legal bounds to hand down a punishment because it felt it had to do something and because, with football season just weeks away, doing nothing might have seemed like an abdication of its duties, even if that something ignored its own role in the creation and fostering of the culture it says it wants to change.

Travis Waldron is a reporter/blogger for at the Center for American Progress Action Fund.

Jul 25, 2012

Freindly Fire: Corbett’s Response On Sandusky Fails To Answer Questions

Guest Column by Chris Friend

In a speech before the world’s press, Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett said, “We must keep in mind that when it comes to the safety of children, there can be no margin for error, no hesitation to act.” It was the same authoritative tone he took when chastising Joe Paterno for not doing more to stop Jerry Sandusky.

Talk about the pot calling the kettle black.

It is Tom Corbett himself who is most guilty of hesitating. Hesitating to appropriately staff the Sandusky investigation, and hesitating for years to make an arrest - both of which may have jeopardized the safety of children. That hesitation, and the stonewalling that Corbett has now employed, has created an intense firestorm around the governor.

Given the unprecedented nature of the Penn State scandal, this issue is not going away. In fact, if Corbett doesn’t come forward with answers, it promises to be the Number One issue in his 2014 re-election campaign.

Last week, the Governor responded to Freindly Fire’s Open Letter, which had requested specifics on key issues. But rather than answering any questions, the Corbett response raised even more red flags.

The Corbett response stated, “Grand juries take time. Evidence in decades-old molestations must be reassembled. A moral certainty of conviction must be reached … Where does Mr. Freind think that decade's worth of evidence came from? It had to be gathered, reluctant witness-by-reluctant witness, with accompanying corroborating evidence.”

Absolutely correct - and precisely Freindly Fire’s point. Corbett is admitting that this high-profile case required a tremendous amount of work. So why were so few investigating it?

Here’s the bottom line. The Sandusky investigation took three years, was reportedly staffed by a single investigator at the outset, and later spearheaded by two narcotics agents, neither of whom had any experience in child molestation cases. Compare to this to the army of investigators Corbett used in the Bonusgate political corruption probe, including, sources say, agents from child predator units.

Given those facts, it seems logical that there can be only one of two explanations:

1) Politics

It doesn’t take a genius to know that sullying the reputation of the state’s largest university and taking down its legendary football coach would be a monumental challenge to any candidate running for governor. This would have been particularly true in Corbett’s case, given that his opponent, Dan Onorato, was a Penn State alumnus.

And the might of Penn State’s massive alumni network was just illustrated, where 76,000 alumni donated much of the $208 million the university raised this year.

So was the understaffed investigation dragged out in such a fashion that the arrests were not made until after the 2010 gubernatorial election?

2) Priorities

Or was the Sandusky case mishandled because Tom Corbett did not prioritize catching child predators?

If politics played no role, then Tom Corbett clearly prioritized corrupt politicians, who we will always have, over taking a serial child rapist off the street. One can only wonder how many more victims Sandusky molested while he was under investigation.

There are a number of quotes, some by Corbett himself, that are quite telling.

Randy Feathers, the head of the Attorney General’s Bureau of Narcotics Office in State College who eventually headed the investigation, stated, "During the Bonusgate investigation, we had a shortage of investigators in Harrisburg." (Altoona Mirror, June 24, 2012)

Corbett was obviously proud of the fact that he pulled no one from Bonusgate, stating, “We used a completely different unit from Bonusgate … (the agents working the Sandusky case) were pure narcotic investigators from up in that region.” (Corbett press conferences, July 12, 2012, and July 14, 2012).

And Corbett admitted worrying that Sandusky could still be victimizing boys during the lengthy investigation, stating, “It was a calculated risk.” (CBS Philadelphia/KYW New Radio, June 26, 2012)

So Corbett knew of the risk, and yet decided that investigating a child-victimizing monster was worthy of only two investigators.

What’s even more telling is the fact that, upon Corbett becoming governor, he immediately ordered state police resources to the case. Why wasn’t that done before? So again, the question has to be asked whether Corbett, as attorney general, ever requested additional assistance from then-Gov. Ed Rendell, himself a highly respected former prosecutor. It’s not a trick question, and only requires a Yes or No answer.

And did Corbett ask the Feds for assistance, especially if additional state police resources were denied by Rendell and no one could be pulled from Bonusgate?

If the answers are in the negative, as they appear to be, what were Corbett’s motives in choosing to stay with such a bare-boned investigative staff?

No one has suggested that Sandusky should have been arrested before evidence was gathered. Common sense dictated that at least two or three solid cases be assembled before an arrest was made, and numerous prosecutors with no ax to grind have stated that strategy would have been a viable one.

But, as has been stated in the media, Corbett waited to have at least 10 cases before making an arrest, which just boggles the mind.

Once several victims were identified and an arrest was made, with the spotlight on Sandusky, more witnesses would come forward. More importantly, Sandusky would have been closely watched and children would have been safe. But that didn’t happen.

Instead, a predator was given three more years to victimize his prey.

No wonder the governor doesn’t want to answer questions.

So the stonewalling continues. There are still no answers as to why Bonusgate investigators were not ordered to work the Sandusky case, and why, sources say, Attorney General agents, including those in child predator units, were pulled from other cases to assist with that corruption probe.

Gov. Corbett also failed to answer the Open Letter’s other questions, including why he did not consider it a conflict of interest to serve on the Penn State Board of Trustees while simultaneously investigating it, and why he approved the $3 million taxpayer grant to Sandusky’s charity, The Second Mile, when he could have simply done nothing or vetoed it without raising one eyebrow.

The latter is particularly compelling since $640,000 in campaign contributions were made from Second Mile board members and affiliates to Corbett’s Attorney General and gubernatorial races.

The Open Letter received an astounding response from across the political spectrum. It was Facebooked and Tweeted thousands of times, published in media outlets and websites across the nation, and was the hottest topic on talk radio, with Freindly Fire discussing it from coast to coast. Most telling is that 99.9 percent of that dialogue had one common theme: why was there so much hesitation to act by Attorney General Corbett?

Rather than invoking “space aliens,” as he did in his response, Gov. Corbett would be better served by coming clean with the only thing that matters: the truth.

There is no such thing as “fair and balanced.” There is only truth and accuracy. It is time for Tom Corbett to tell the whole truth - accurately - regarding the very troubling Jerry Sandusky investigation.

The best place to start? Answer the questions. And the truth shall set you free.

Chris Freind is an independent columnist, television/radio commentator, and investigative reporter who operates his own news bureau,

Jul 23, 2012

Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett isues statement on NCAA sanctions for Penn State

"The appalling actions of a few people have brought us once again into the national spotlight. We have taken a monster off the streets and while we will never be able to repair the injury done to these children, we must repair the damage to this university.

Part of that corrective process is to accept the serious penalties imposed today by the NCAA on Penn State University and its football program.

However, as governor, I am grateful that the NCAA did not impose the 'death penalty,' which would have also had a severe detrimental impact on the citizens of State College, Centre County and the entire Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

I also want assurance from Penn State that no taxpayer dollars will be used to pay the $60 million fine imposed on the university today.

Penn State is more than football -- it is a world-class university, providing an outstanding education to our young people in a variety of areas from scientific research and engineering, to the arts and humanities.

I am confident that the university will move forward from this experience, complete the healing process and once again be worthy of its great reputation."

Penn Staters for Responsible Stewardship's letter to the NCAA regarding sanctions

Subject: Pennsylvania State University
Date: July 22, 2012

Dr. Emmert,

The undersigned is counsel to Penn Staters for Responsible Stewardship ("PS4RS"), a group of over
5,000 individuals affiliated with Pennsylvania State University (the "University") as alumni, students,
benefactors, and friends. This email is in relation to your proposed announcement of "unprecedented"
sanctions against the University in connection with certain criminal actions of a former Assistant Football
Coach and tenured professor emeritus at the University.

Time and space prevent me from outlining that which you already know - your organization is wholly
without power to sanction the University for the events related to the above. It is beyond comprehension
how the NCAA can possibly believe it has the power to control events that do not violate NCAA rules,
nor how the NCAA can issue punishment without ever even launching an investigation in accordance
with your own rules. However, we can, at this point, agree to disagree on that issue, though you can be
most certain that the issue will be addressed.

The immediate issue relates to the concept of imposing sanctions on the University based, in whole or in
part, upon the findings of an internal investigation commissioned by the University's Board of Trustees
("BoT") and conducted by the private law firm of Freeh, Sporkin & Sullivan ("FSS"). The investigation
culminated in a 267 page report (the "FSS Report") which was issued on July 12, 2012.

My client has engaged our firm to conduct a comprehensive review of the FSS Report. While we have
only begun our work, upon even a cursory review, we have determined that the FSS Report is fraught
with factual and legal errors, filled with opinions and unsupported conclusions, and, in a word, faulty. To
rely on such a report to issue punishment of any kind would be beyond reckless.

Lest you be misled by the frenzied media reports, the FSS Report, and the individuals who were paid to
conduct it, are far from infallible. In this regard, I would refer you to the recent decision of the Court of
Arbitration for Sport in connection with an alleged election bribery case involving a former FIFA
presidential candidate. In its decision, that Court lifted a lifetime ban on the individual based, in part,
upon the fact that that an internal investigation by FSS on behalf of FIFA, which led to the ban, was "not
complete or comprehensive enough to fill the gaps in the record." These same concerns, and more, are
most certainly present here.

On behalf of my client, I urge you to reconsider your position. Knee-jerk reactions based upon faulty and
incomplete information have been the hallmark of the events that have transpired at the University over
the last 8 months. The FSS Report is less than 10 days old, and the 2 other University employees charged
with crimes have not even had their day in Court. Should the NCAA move forward tomorrow, whether
with the concurrence of the University's administrators or not, you will add yet another sad chapter in a
saga that simply has not been fully reviewed and, unfortunately, your actions will set in motion litigation
that could be avoided if appropriate consideration is given to the actual facts.

Please be guided accordingly.

Robert J. Tribeck, Esquire
Rhoads & Sinon LLP
One South Market Square, 12th Floor
Harrisburg, PA 17101

Paterno family statement on NCAA sanctions

Sexual abuse is reprehensible, especially when it involves children, and no one starting with Joe Paterno condones or minimizes it. The horrific acts committed by Jerry Sandusky shock the conscience of every decent human being. How Sandusky was able to get away with his crimes for so long has yet to be fully understood, despite the claims and assertions of the Freeh report.

The release of the Freeh report has triggered an avalanche of vitriol, condemnation and posthumous punishment on Joe Paterno. The NCAA has now become the latest party to accept the report as the final word on the Sandusky scandal. The sanctions announced by the NCAA today defame the legacy and contributions of a great coach and educator without any input from our family or those who knew him best.

That the President, the Athletic Director and the Board of Trustees accepted this unprecedented action by the NCAA without requiring a full due process hearing before the Committee on Infractions is an abdication of their responsibilities and a breach of their fiduciary duties to the University and the 500,000 alumni. Punishing past, present and future students of the University because of Sandusky’s crimes does not serve justice. This is not a fair or thoughtful action; it is a panicked response to the public’s understandable revulsion at what Sandusky did.

The point of due process is to protect against this sort of reflexive action. Joe Paterno was never interviewed by the University or the Freeh Group. His counsel has not been able to interview key witnesses as they are represented by counsel related to ongoing litigation. We have had no access to the records reviewed by the Freeh group. The NCAA never contacted our family or our legal counsel. And the fact that several parties have pending trials that could produce evidence and testimony relevant to this matter has been totally discounted.

Unfortunately all of these facts have been ignored by the NCAA, the Freeh Group and the University.

Former Penn State President Graham Spanier's letter to the board of trustees

ESPN is reporting that Former President Graham Spanier wrote a letter to the Penn State board of trustees Sunday night criticizing the Free Report and providing members with more details regarding the University's role in the Jerry Sandusky scandal.

Dear Members of the Board of Trustees:

I write to you with great regret about the situation that the entire University finds itself in following the conviction of Jerry Sandusky and the release of the Freeh report. Upon release of the Grand Jury presentment last November I was shocked and continue to be deeply troubled to have learned that a child predator victimized children while associated with the University, even after his retirement. I can assure you that I hadn't the slightest inkling until reading the Grand Jury presentment that Sandusky was being investigated for more than a single incident in a shower in 2001, something that was described to me only as "horsing around."

Had I known then what we now know about Jerry Sandusky, had I received any information about a sexual act in the shower or elsewhere, or had I had some basis for a higher level of suspicion about Sandusky, I would have strongly and immediately intervened. Never would I stand by for a moment to allow a child predator to hurt children. I am personally outraged that any such abusive acts could have occurred in or around Penn State and have considerable pain that it could perhaps have been ended had we known more sooner.

You need to understand and hear from me some important facts: I was apparently copied on two emails in 1998, the first, from Gary Schultz to Tim Curley on May 6 saying that "the Public Welfare people will interview the individual Thursday." The second email, from Schultz to Curley on June 9, says "They met with Jerry on Monday and concluded that there was no criminal behavior and the matter was closed as an investigation. He was a little emotional and expressed concern as to how this might have adversely affected the child. I think the matter has been appropriately investigated and I hope it is now behind us." I have no recollection of any conversations on the topic or any other emails from that era sent to me or by me. It is public knowledge that the District Attorney decided there was no crime to pursue. I don't understand how one could conclude from such evidence "concealment" of a known child predator.

My knowledge of the 2001 incident is fully explained to the best of my recollection in the materials I provided to Mr. Freeh and that are appended to his report (enclosed again here). I never heard a word about abusive or sexual behavior, nor were there any other details presented that would have led me to think along those lines. McQueary's name was never mentioned to me, and it is clear that Curley and Schultz had not spoken to him yet when they gave me their initial heads up. I was in fact told that the witness wasn't sure what he saw, since it was around a corner. Dr. Jonathan Dranov's Grand Jury and trial testimony appear to corroborate that nothing sexual was reported to him in his meeting with McQueary on the night of the 2001 incident.

The Freeh report is also egregious in its incomplete and inaccurate reporting of my 2011 discussions with certain trustees, advice and reporting from the University's General Counsel, and the recounting of unfolding events in November, 2011. I want to be clear that the Chair of the Board of Trustees was kept informed by me throughout 2011 to the fullest extent I was able, beginning on the Sunday after my Grand Jury appearance and in other discussions with trustee leaders.

In reporting to the Trustees, I was guided by and followed all instructions from the University's General Counsel. She told me very little about how she was handling the Grand Jury investigation. She never told me anything about the content of the interviews with athletic department staff or the Curley and Schultz Grand Jury testimony or the interview of Curley and Schultz by the Attorney General when she was present. She did tell me on at least three occasions, however, that this was the third or fourth Grand Jury on this matter, that there appeared to be no issue for the University, and that the Attorney General did not seem to have any evidence to suggest that something happened involving Penn State. She had, she said, spoken several times to Attorney General staff. I was never told by her of any materials being subpoenaed from the University, or even that I had been subpoenaed to testify. She told me I was going voluntarily, as I had previously agreed to do, and she accompanied me before the judge and in the Grand Jury room and sat through my testimony. I had no preparation or understanding of the context. As I was being sworn in for my Grand Jury appearance, much to my surprise she handed over to the judge a thumb drive containing my entire history of emails back to 2004.

I note that the Freeh report concluded that the General Counsel failed to seek the advice of a law firm with quality criminal experience to advise her of how to deal with the Attorney General and the Grand Jury investigation. I have learned this is a standard procedure when corporations or other large entities are served with Grand Jury subpoenas.

It is unfathomable and illogical to think that a respected family sociologist and family therapist, someone who personally experienced massive and persistent abuse as a child, someone who devoted a significant portion of his career to the welfare of children and youth, including service on the boards of four such organizations, two as chair of the board, would have knowingly turned a blind eye to any report of child abuse or predatory sexual acts directed at children. As I have stated in the clearest possible terms, at no time during my presidency did anyone ever report to me that Jerry Sandusky was observed abusing a child or youth or engaged in a sexual act with a child or youth.

This conclusion should have been abundantly clear to Mr. Freeh and his colleagues who interviewed me for five hours before their report was finished and interrogated scores of employees about me. Yet the report is full of factual errors and jumps to conclusions that are untrue and unwarranted. I have identified many errors in the report that pertain to me, which my attorneys will share confidentially with University legal counsel for your records and consideration. Moreover, I look forward to the opportunity to set the record straight with representatives of the Board of Trustees as you might desire.

As my attorneys have pointed out, another investigation of my conduct, an investigation by federal officials responsible for my national top secret security clearance, was carried out simultaneously with the Freeh investigation. This clearance required a re-review when the Sandusky matter surfaced in November. Federal investigators then conducted a four-month investigation of their own in which they interviewed many of the same individuals the Freeh Group interviewed and other relevant individuals Freeh did not interview. The investigation was significantly focused on any possible role I might have played in the Sandusky matter.

At the conclusion of the investigation, my top secret clearance was reaffirmed. Although I told Mr. Freeh directly about the federal investigation and its result, there is no mention of it anywhere in his report.

Comments from the Freeh report and some trustees about my leadership of Penn State over more than 16 years are confusing to me. I tried to keep the trustees informed of all of the most relevant issues. Following our prior tradition of "Chairpersons Meetings," I instituted a pre-board dinner with trustee leadership, Trustee Seminars, and a morning report in public session with ample time for questions on any topic. We initiated Board subcommittees, an audit committee, a governance committee, and numerous other reforms to improve governance. I also believe his report is unfairly critical of the Board of Trustees in parts.

I worked with seven board chairs, received stellar annual reviews following surveys of all board members, and four contract renewals. I had an open door policy with trustees, returned all calls and answered all board members' emails on a same-day basis. I never hesitated to bring to board leadership discussion of any sensitive issue. I believe my record as president of Penn State speaks for itself. Together, we accomplished a great deal of good during my 16-year presidency of Penn State. Yet I find myself excoriated by the Freeh report and individual trustees speaking negatively of me in public. My reputation has been profoundly damaged.

In light of my 26 years of service to Penn State, my contributions as president for more than 16 years, and my continuing service even after I left the presidency, I would ask to have an audience with representatives of the board to answer any questions you might have. I write you with sincere respect, with a heavy heart for the children who were victimized by Sandusky, and with regret for the difficult challenges ahead for this great University.


Graham Spanier
I hate to say it but I agree with Spanier here but why wait until the night before the NCAA destroys the football program to try and clarify the record? But it Seems like Spanier is the only one with the balls to stand up and fight these NCAA sanctions.

The key point in this letter that I find interesting is that Spanier says that in 2001 he consulted and was advised by the University's general counsel regarding the allegations. Sounds like a cover up to me. This is very interesting. A lot of the details in this letter are left out of the Freeh Report. Why? That is the question that should be on your minds.

More: Spanier says university lawyer kept him in dark on Sandusky investigation Pittsburgh Tribune-Review.

Breaking down the NCAA's sanctions against Penn State

 Source: NCAA.Org

$60 million fine. The NCAA imposes a $60 million fine, equivalent to the approximate average of one year's gross revenues from the Penn State football program, to be paid over a five-year period beginning in 2012 into an endowment for programs preventing child sexual abuse and/or assisting the victims of child sexual abuse. The minimum annual payment will be $12 million until the $60 million is paid. The proceeds of this fine may not be used to fund programs at the University. No current sponsored athletic team may be reduced or eliminated in order to fund this fine.

Four-year postseason ban. The NCAA imposes a four-year postseason ban on participation in postseason play in the sport of football, beginning with the 2012-2013 academic year and expiring at the conclusion of the 2015-2016 academic year. Therefore, the University's football team shall end its 2012 season and each season through 2015 with the playing if its last regularly scheduled, in-season contest and shall not be eligible to participate in any postseason competition, including a conference championship, any bowl game, or any postseason playoff competition.

Four-year reduction of grants-in-aid. For a period of four years commencing with the 2013-2014 academic year and expiring at the conclusion of the 2016-2017 academic year, the NCAA imposes a limit of 15 initial grants-in-aid (from a maximum of 25 allowed) and for a period of four years commencing with the 2014-2015 academic year and expiring at the conclusion of the 2017-2018 academic year a limit of 65 total grants-in-aid (from a maximum of 85 allowed) for football during each of those specified years. In the event the total number of grants-in-aid drops below 65, the University may award grants-in-aid to non-scholarship student-athletes who have been members of the football program as allowed under Bylaw

Five years of probation. The NCAA imposes this period of probation, which will include the appointment of an on-campus, independent Integrity Monitor and periodic reporting as detailed in the Corrective Component of this Consent Decree. Failure to comply with the Consent Decree during this probationary period may result in additional, more severe sanctions.

Vacation of wins since 1998. The NCAA vacates all wins of the Penn State football team from 1998 to 2011. The career record of Coach “Joe” Paterno will reflect the vacated records.

Waiver of transfer rules and grant-in-aid retention. Any entering or returning football student-athlete will be allowed to immediately transfer and will be eligible to immediately compete at the transfer institution, provided he is otherwise eligible. Any football student-athlete who wants to remain at the University may retain his athletic grant-in-aid, as long as he meets and maintains applicable academic requirements, regardless of whether he competes on the football team.

Individual penalties to be determined. The NCAA reserves the right to initiate a formal investigatory and disciplinary process and impose sanctions on individuals after the conclusion of any criminal proceedings related to any individual involved.


Adoption of all recommendations presented in Chapter 10 of the Freeh Report. The NCAA requires the university to adopt all recommendations for reform delineated in Chapter 10 of the Freeh Report. The university shall take all Reasonable steps to implement the recommendations in spirit and substance by December 31, 2013.

Implementation of Athletics Integrity Agreement. The Freeh Report includes a number of recommendations related to the University's athletics department. Specifically, in Chapter 10, Section 5.0, the report addresses the integration of the athletics department into the greater university community. Within 10 days of this consent decree, the university will be required to enter into an “Athletics Integrity Agreement” (AIA) with the NCAA and the Big Ten Conference, which obligates the University to adopt all of the recommendations in Section 5.0 of the Free Report as described in the above paragraph and, at a minimum, the following additional actions:
  • Compliance Officer for Athletics. Establish and select an individual for a position of a compliance officer or equivalent who is, at a minimum, responsible for the ethical and compliance obligations of the athletics department.
  • Compliance Council. Create a Compliance Council (or Council Subcommittee) composed of faculty, senior university administrators and the compliance officer for athletics, which shall be responsible for review and oversight of matters related to ethical, legal and compliance obligations of the athletics department.
  • Disclosure Program. Create a reporting mechanism, including a hotline, for named or anonymous individuals to disclose, report or request advice on any identified issues or questions regarding compliance with (i) the AIA; (ii) the athletics department's policies, conduct, practices or procedures or (iii) the NCAA Constitution, bylaws or the principles regarding institutional control, responsibility, ethical conduct and integrity reflected in the Constitution and bylaws.
  • Internal Accountability and Certifications. Appoint a named coach, manager or administrator for each of the university's NCAA-sanctioned intercollegiate athletics teams who shall be assigned to monitor and oversee activities within his or her team and shall annually certify to the Compliance Council that his or her team is compliant with all relevant ethical, legal, compliance and university standards and obligations.
  • External Compliance Review/Certification Process. The athletics director shall annually certify to the Compliance Council, the board of trustees and the NCAA that the athletics department is in compliance with all ethical, compliance, legal and university obligations. If the department fails to earn a certification, the board of trustees ( or subcommittee thereof) or an appropriate university administrator shall take appropriate action against the athletics department, including the possibility of reduction in athletics funding.
  • Athletics Code of Conduct. Create or update any code of conduct or the athletics department to codify the values of honesty, integrity and civility.
  • Training and Education. In addition to Chapter 10, Section 5.5 of the Free Report, require all student-athletes and university employees associated with the athletics department, including faculty and staff to complete a yearly training course that addresses issues of ethics, integrity, civility, standards of conduct and reporting of violations. Each person who is required to complete training shall certify, in writing, that he or she has received such training. All training shall be overseen by the Compliance Council. The board of trustees also should receive training and education on these issues, including its relationship, role and responsibilities regarding the athletics program.
If the NCAA determines, in its sole discretion, that the university materially breached any provision of the AIA, such action shall be considered grounds for extending the term of the AIA or imposing additional sanctions, up to and including a temporary ban on participation in certain intercollegiate athletic competition and additional fines. The NCAA shall be permitted to accept as true and take into consideration all factual findings of the Freeh Report in imposing additional sanctions related to breach of the AIA and may initiate further NCA investigative and administrative proceedings. The NCAA will provide the university notice of the allegation of a material breach and an opportunity to respond, but the final determination rests with the NCAA.

Appointment of an independent Athletics Integrity Monitor for a five-year period. The NCAA requires that the university appoint an independent Athletics Integrity Monitor for a five-year period, at the university's expense. The monitor will prepare a quarterly report to the university's board of trustees, the Big Ten Conference, and the NCAA regarding the university's execution and maintenance of the provisions of the AIA. The monitor will make recommendations to the university to take any steps he or she reasonably believes are necessary to comply with the terms of the AIA and to enhance compliance with NCAA rules and regulations. The Monitor will operate under the following conditions:
  • He or she will be selected by the NCAA, in consultation with the university and the Big Ten Conference.
  • He or she will have access to any university facilities, personnel and non-privileged documents and records as are reasonably necessary to assist in the execution of his or her duties. The university shall preserve all such records as directed by the monitor.
  • He or she will have the authority to employ legal counsel, consultants, investigators, experts and other personnel reasonably necessary to assit in the proper discharge of his or her duties. His or her expenses will be paid by the university, and the university shall indemnify and hold harmless the monitor and his or her professional advisors from any claim by any third party except for conduct: a) outside the scope of the monitor's duties; b) undertaken in bad faith; or c) constituting gross negligence or willful misconduct.

NCAA's full statement on "unprecedented" sanctions against Penn Sate University

Source: NCAA.Org

By perpetuating a "football first" culture that ultimately enabled serial child sexual abuse to occur, The Pennsylvania State University leadership failed to value and uphold institutional integrity, resulting in a breach of the NCAA constitution and rules. The NCAA Division I Board of Directors and NCAA Executive Committee directed Association President Mark Emmert to examine the circumstances and determine appropriate action in consultation with these presidential bodies.

"As we evaluated the situation, the victims affected by Jerry Sandusky and the efforts by many to conceal his crimes informed our actions," said Emmert. "At our core, we are educators. Penn State leadership lost sight of that."

According to the NCAA conclusions and sanctions, the Freeh Report "presents an unprecedented failure of institutional integrity leading to a culture in which a football program was held in higher esteem than the values of the institution, the values of the NCAA, the values of higher education, and most disturbingly the values of human decency."

As a result, the NCAA imposed a $60 million sanction on the university, which is equivalent to the average gross annual revenue of the football program. These funds must be paid into an endowment for external programs preventing child sexual abuse or assisting victims and may not be used to fund such programs at the university.

The sanctions also include a four-year football postseason ban and a vacation of all wins from 1998 through 2011. The career record of former head football coach Joe Paterno will reflect these vacated records. Penn State must also reduce 10 initial and 20 total scholarships each year for a four-year period. In addition, the NCAA reserves the right to impose additional sanctions on involved individuals at the conclusion of any criminal proceedings.

The NCAA recognizes that student-athletes are not responsible for these events and worked to minimize the impact of its sanctions on current and incoming football student-athletes. Any entering or returning student-athlete will be allowed to immediately transfer and compete at another school. Further, any football student-athletes who remain at the university may retain their scholarships, regardless of whether they compete on the team.

To further integrate the athletics department into the university, Penn State will be required to enter into an "Athletics Integrity Agreement" with the NCAA. It also must adopt all Freeh Report recommendations and appoint an independent, NCAA-selected Athletics Integrity Monitor, who will oversee compliance with the agreement.

Effective immediately, the university faces five years of probation. Specifically, the university is subject to more severe penalties if it does not adhere to these requirements or violates NCAA rules in any sport during this time period.

"There has been much speculation on whether or not the NCAA has the authority to impose any type of penalty related to Penn State," said Ed Ray, Executive Committee chair and Oregon State president. "This egregious behavior not only goes against our rules and constitution, but also against our values."

Because Penn State accepted the Freeh Report factual findings, which the university itself commissioned, the NCAA determined traditional investigative proceedings would be redundant and unnecessary.

"We cannot look to NCAA history to determine how to handle circumstances so disturbing, shocking and disappointing," said Emmert. "As the individuals charged with governing college sports, we have a responsibility to act. These events should serve as a call to every single school and athletics department to take an honest look at its campus environment and eradicate the 'sports are king' mindset that can so dramatically cloud the judgment of educators."

Penn State fully cooperated with the NCAA on this examination of the issues and took decisive action in removing individuals in leadership who were culpable.

"The actions already taken by the new Penn State Board of Trustees chair Karen Peetz and Penn State President Rodney Erickson have demonstrated a strong desire and determination to take the steps necessary for Penn State to right these severe wrongs," said Emmert.

Jul 22, 2012

Update: NCAA sanctions for Penn State

Update on Penn State sanctions: Penn State prepares for a 5-7 year bowl ban with 7 years losing scholarships. It is also being reported that Penn State's President Rondey Erickson and the BOT agreed to the NCAA sanctions yesterday which is one of the reasons Joe Paterno's statue came down today.

NCAA set to gut the Penn State football program Monday morning

ESPN is now reporting that the death penalty will not be the sanction levied against Penn State. But then comes this eerie statement from a NCAA source:
“NCAA president Mark Emmert has decided to punish Penn State with severe penalties likely to include a significant loss of scholarships and loss of multiple bowls, a source close to the decision told ESPN’s Joe Schad on Sunday morning.

But Penn State will not receive the so-called ‘death penalty’ that would have suspended the program for at least one year, the source said.

The penalties, however, are considered to be so harsh that the death penalty may have been preferable, the source said.”
Well, the NCAA seems hell bent on levying sanctions against the football program and the university that sources call “unprecedented.” It’s hard to imagine anything worse than the death penalty, which, when one thinks of the SMU situation, is not unprecedented, so we’re curious what these sanctions will involve, exactly.

We do know, however, that Emmert has been granted the power to use “non traditional methods” of punishment. Whatever that means. The decision will be announced tomorrow morning at 9:00 a.m.

I guess we can say goodbye to the Penn State football program as we know it. NCAA President Mark Emmert and the NCAA Executive Board is basically going to gut the program Monday morning. Rumors are the sanctions will be something like a 5 to 7 year bowl ban. A 5 to 7 year TV ban. A large number of scholarships taken away over 7 years.

So if you own a house in the State College area get ready for the value of your house to drop significantly during the next five years. If you are a small business owner you might as well close up shop now.

Considering the Freeh Report is basically garbage and has no concrete evidence of a cover up, I only hope that state officials step in at this point and challenge the NCAA on what can only be described as a sever overreach of NCAA authority. Considering the economic ramifications of these sanctions, residents of State College might want to obtain a lawyer and file a class action lawsuit against the NCAA.

Paterno Family statement on taking down the statue

Tearing down the statue of Joe Paterno does not serve the victims of Jerry Sandusky's horrible crimes or help heal the Penn State Community. We believe the only way to help the victims is to uncover the full truth. The Freeh report, though it has been accepted by the media as the definitive conclusion on the Sandusky scandal, is the
equivalent of an indictment - a charging document written by a prosecutor - and an incomplete and unofficial one at that.

To those who truly want to know the truth about Sandusky, it should matter that Joe Paterno has never had a hearing; that his legal counsel has never been able to interview key witnesses, all of whom are represented by lawyers and therefore unavailable; that there has never been an opportunity to review critical evidence which has not been made public; that selective evidence and the opinion of Mr Freeh
is treated as the equivalent of a fair trial. Despite this obviously flawed and one-sided presentation, the University believes it must acquiesce and accept that Joe Paterno has been given a fair and complete hearing. We think the better course would have been for the University to take a strong stand in support of due process so that
the complete truth can be uncovered.

It is not the University's responsibility to defend or protect Joe Paterno. But they at least should have acknowledged that important legal cases are still pending and that the record on Joe Paterno, the Board and other key players is far from complete.

Joe Paterno statue taken down this morning

I have confirmed that Penn State University crews tore down the Joe Paterno statue in front of Beaver Stadium this morning around 7:00 AM. The statue was wrapped and taken to storage. Police blocked off access to the area starting at around 6:00 AM.

The University released the following statement regarding the decision to take down the statue:
"Since we learned of the Grand Jury presentment and the charges against Jerry Sandusky and University officials last November, members of the Penn State community and the public have been made much more acutely aware of the tragedy of child sexual abuse. Our thoughts and prayers continue to go out to those victims of Mr. Sandusky and all other victims of child abuse. I assure you that Penn State will take a national leadership role in the detection and prevention of child maltreatment in the months and years ahead.

With the release of Judge Freeh's Report of the Special Investigative Counsel, we as a community have had to confront a failure of leadership at many levels. The statue of Joe Paterno outside Beaver Stadium has become a lightning rod of controversy and national debate, including the role of big time sports in university life. The Freeh Report has given us a great deal to reflect upon and to consider, including Coach Paterno's legacy.

Throughout Penn State, the two most visible memorials to Coach Paterno are the statue at Beaver Stadium and the Paterno Library. The future of these two landmarks has been the topic of heated debate and many messages have been received in various University offices, including my own. We have heard from numerous segments of the Penn State community and others, many of whom have differing opinions. These are particularly important decisions when considering things that memorialize such a revered figure.

I now believe that, contrary to its original intention, Coach Paterno's statue has become a source of division and an obstacle to healing in our University and beyond. For that reason, I have decided that it is in the best interest of our university and public safety to remove the statue and store it in a secure location. I believe that, were it to remain, the statue will be a recurring wound to the multitude of individuals across the nation and beyond who have been the victims of child abuse.

On the other hand, the Paterno Library symbolizes the substantial and lasting contributions to the academic life and educational excellence that the Paterno family has made to Penn State University. The library remains a tribute to Joe and Sue Paterno's commitment to Penn State's student body and academic success, and it highlights the positive impacts Coach Paterno had on the University. Thus I feel strongly that the library's name should remain unchanged.

Coach Paterno's positive impact over the years and everything he did for this University predate his statue. At the same time it is true that our institution's excellence cannot be attributed to any one person or to athletics. Rather, Penn State is defined by our actions and accomplishments as a learning community. Penn State has long been an outstanding academic institution and we will continue to be.

The world will be watching how Penn State addresses its challenges in the days ahead. While some may take issue with the decisions I have made, I trust that everyone associated with our University will respond in a civil and respectful manner.

I fully realize that my decision will not be popular in some Penn State circles, but I am certain it is the right and principled decision. I believe we have chosen a course that both recognizes the many contributions that Joe Paterno made to the academic life of our University, while taking seriously the conclusions of the Freeh Report and the national issue of child sexual abuse. Today, as every day, our hearts go out to the victims."
Tearing down Joe Paterno's statue will be the defining moment of this Sandusky child abuse scandal. The statue is now down. His ties to Penn State is further broken. His legacy is gone. And those who are really responsible for this horrific tragedy will never be held responsible for the mistakes that they made. Every Penn State fan and alum should be outraged. Just another huge mistake made by members of the BOT and the administration.

Jul 20, 2012

Letter from Penn State alum to University President Rodney Erickson puts abuse scandal into perspective

This was originally posted on NotPSU Blog

Author of the letter: Ray Blehar
Dear President Erickson, 
Your message of July 18th in response to the Freeh Report put forth some of the future realities for Penn State: 
1) This is not the end of the process, nor will it be the end of a number of investigations or inquiries into the University; 
2) Time to heal. Time to comprehend. Time to trust. Time to transform. Time to regain what has been lost, and time to move forward; and 
3) The world is watching and they are anxious for expedient responses 
It is how PSU prepares for these realities that is going to count most. We have now undergone two media feeding frenzies, the first in November of 2011 and the second in response to the Freeh Report. In both cases, PSU was unprepared with a statement of its own that could slow down or stop the media narrative, let alone get control of the narrative. In the first instance, the Penn State Board of Trustees (BOT) did the worst thing possible, and made statements that confirmed the media's narrative that PSU is a football factory that vested its power in one person (Joe Paterno). This admission remains an affront to PSU alumni, who are proud of PSU because of the quality of its academics and the education we received, its #1 ranking for corporate recruiting by the Wall Street Journal, its great fund raising efforts for THON and outreach to Special Olympics, and in the outstanding graduation rates of its student athletes. Under the intense pressure of the media, the BOT completely ignored these facts and did not defend our fine university against a false narrative provided by the media and readily consumed by the public. 
I have read that you are preparing a response to the Freeh Report. As you prepare the response, I ask that you think about what you are going to say as the media will report it. Those things will be reported in fifteen second sound bites and in the news crawlers that run across the bottom of our television screens. The message must be clear, it must be strong, and it must help us regain what we have lost.

I have spent over 20 years of my career as an analyst, assistant inspector general, director of quality, and director of financial controls and have much familiarity with writing, analyzing, and responding inspector general inspections and audits, financial audits, and reviews from government oversight. In fact, I had a key role in analyzing the Robb-Silberman Commission Report on Weapons of Mass Destruction and determining my organizations response to the report recommendations on improving the quality of our intelligence reporting. 
In responding the the Freeh Report, PSU should show respect for the victims and give credence to the administrative recommendations offered by the Freeh Report, it also must call out the flaws in the report , the inaccuracies of Mr. Freeh's press conference comments, and that the report, while containing some facts, is certainly not a full accounting of the facts. The Freeh report also takes liberties with hearsay evidence provided by witnesses and treats the hearsay as if it were direct quotes. Finally, Mr. Freeh assigns motives and feelings to the officials involved in the 1998 and 2001 incidents without ever interviewing those officials. Without the testimony of Curley, Schultz, Spanier, police chief Harmon, and others, this report is incomplete. 
I humbly submit the following talking points for inclusion in your response to the Freeh Report. 
1. The Freeh Report provided clear evidence that the Penn State BOT failed to perform its oversight role and vested to much decision making authority with the President. In the critical time between the announcement of the grand jury proceedings of the Sandusky Scandal and the release of the grand jury presentment, the PSU BOT failed to ask the right questions and as a result, PSU was not prepared to address the many allegations in the report, and particularly the false allegation of a rape occurring on our campus. The damage caused to PSU by that single false allegation is immeasurable and, unfortunately, Mr. Freeh joined in doing more damage when he made the misstatement that "the rapes of these boys occurred in the Lasch Building" during his press conference. 
2. Mr. Freeh stated that PSU officials failed to take any action to in the Sandusky case to avoid bad publicity. We do not believe the evidence gathered supports this claim, as it is solely based on hearsay from the attorney of Second Mile. In this instance the Second Mile attorney is relaying information from a discussion he had with the Second Mile CEO, who stated that Tim Curley told him to avoid publicity. Quite frankly, this is a case of double hearsay. And it is also incredible that it never dawned on Mr. Freeh that Second Mile failed to report this incident because it was avoiding bad publicity to preserve its own livelihood. 
3. Mr. Freeh states that Tim Curley, Graham Spanier, Tim Curley and Gary Schultz had knowledge of a 1998 investigation involving sexual misconduct by Jerry Sandusky is not supported by the evidence. Mr. Freeh produced hand written notes by Gary Schultz that relate to the investigation, but Mr. Freeh states he cannot determine who was present when these notes were taken or if the information was shared. There is no direct evidence of Mr. Curley, Mr. Paterno, or Dr. Spanier ever being informed of the details of the 1998 investigation. There is no evidence to suggest that Mr. Paterno followed this investigation closely or received updates, as Mr. Freeh stated. The report stated that it could not find any evidence to confirm that Mr. Paterno was ever informed of the conclusion of the investigation. The report also could not produce evidence that Mr. Paterno got a single update. Dr. Spanier stated he remembers the incident as a "vague reference with no individual mentioned." What Mr. Freeh has done amounts to throwing unrelated documents and evidence into a box, then stating the evidence is related because it is in the same box. 

What is truly incredible about this concoction devised by Mr. Freeh is that as a former law enforcement official, he should be aware that crimes involving juvenile victims are conducted in a confidential manner. Given this scenario, it is more likely that the information stopped with Gary Schultz and was not shared with other PSU officials. This is perfectly consistent with the statements of Detective Schreffler, who stated that "Old Main" did not get involved in this investigation. And it would be perfectly consistent with Spanier's lack of recall. And it would be perfectly consistent with the absence of details in the e-mails from Harmon to Schultz that were relayed to Curley. And it would be consistent with the grand jury testimony of Joe Paterno, who stated he was not aware of any allegations of sexual abuse against Jerry Sandusky prior to 2001. 
4. Mr. Freeh downplays the significance of Tim Curley informing Second Mile that Jerry Sandusky showered with a boy. Mr. Freeh obviously did not familiarize himself with the qualifications of the former Second Mile CEO, who is a licensed PhD in psychology and an individual who should have had a heightened sense of awareness for child abuse -- not only because of his profession but because he is the director of a children's charity. I also feel it is necessary to remind everyone of this fact -- Jerry Sandusky worked for Second Mile in 2001. He was not a PSU employee. Under the Pennsylvania child abuse reporting statutes, the employer who receives a report of abuse involving children under their care are mandated to report it to the authorities. Let the record state that a Penn State official reported an incident of suspected child abuse of a child in the care of Jerry Sandusky - a Second Mile employee who mentored children - to the CEO of Second Mile, who had a responsibility to report this abuse to authorities. 
5. Freeh states: "Many, many witnesses we spoke to described Paterno as one the most powerful leaders on campus," Freeh said. "He could have stopped it." 
Repeating what people believe to be true and what is the truth are two different things. Freeh provides no evidence (other than opinion) that demonstrates Joe Paterno was in a position of power - or had a leading role - in the decisions regarding Sandusky's actions in 1998 and 2001 or in Sandusky's retirement. a) Freeh references a number of meetings and discussions between Curley, Schultz, and Spanier, yet it is mind-boggling that the most powerful man on campus is not invited to the meetings nor can Freeh provide any credible evidence that Paterno played a role in the decision-making process. b) The report provided contradictory evidence to Paterno's power on campus when it reports that Detective Schreffler received no interference from the administration in the 1998 investigation of Sandusky. Wouldn't it make sense that Detective Schreffler and the police force would have immediately informed Paterno of the outcome of the investigation, given his importance on campus? Yet, Freeh cannot even uncover a piece of evidence indicated Paterno was informed of the outcome. c) The Freeh Report produces scant evidence - in the form of handwritten margin notes - that Paterno had a role in determining Sandusky's retirement package. In fact, the evidence - in the form of correspondence - clearly shows that "one of the most powerful" men on campus was rarely consulted during the negotiations of the retirement of his top assistant coach. d) The Freeh Report ignores the Washington Post interview (used in another instance to imply Paterno was untruthful about 1998) where Joe Paterno describes himself as "in a dilemma" about Sandusky because he was no longer Jerry's boss. While this interview was conducted long after the 2001 incident, it provides information that provides how Joe viewed his role in decision making outside of the football program. 
6. Regarding the aftermath of the 1998 incidence, Freeh states: "Nothing in the record indicates that Curley and Schultz discussed whether Paterno should restrict or terminate Sandusky's uses of the facilities or that Paterno conveyed any such expectations to Sandusky." 
This suggested course of action only makes sense if PSU officials have a crystal ball and can see the future. Unfortunately, the future is not known and the decision about Sandusky's access to facilities was based on: a) in 1999, Sandusky was fully employed by PSU as the Defensive Coordinator of the football team and needed access to facilities to perform his job; b) that Sandusky was not charged with a crime and that the Department of Welfare's investigation concluded in that child abuse was unfounded; c) up until that incident, PSU had no reason to believe that Sandusky's interactions with children were anything but altruistic; and d) that providing the Second Mile children with access to the PSU football facilities and football team provided many with a positive influence on their lives. 
7. The Freeh report condemns PSU for allowing "Sandusky to retire in 1999, not as a suspected child predator, as a valued member of the Penn State football legacy..."
At the time of Sandusky's retirement, PSU officials were aware of one unfounded allegation of child abuse against Sandusky. The suggestion that they would somehow change his retirement package and access based unfounded allegation of child abuse, weighed against 30 years of service to PSU is unfathomable. Again, Mr. Freeh assumes that PSU officials have the power to look into the future. 
It is time to regain what has been lost. It's time to take control of the media narrative. 
The world is watching.
Raymond M. Blehar
  • Honors Graduate, Smeal MBA Class of 2008
  • Sparks Circle Member, Presidents Club
  • Lifetime Member, Penn State Alumni Association
  • Charter Member, Mount Nittany Club
  • Honorary Coach Member, Nittany Lion Club
The level of misinformation and untruths being spread about Penn State University's role in a "cover up" has reached an alarming level. If you are a Penn State graduate, I think it is time to start pushing back. I totally agree with Mr. Blehars thoughtful incites in his letter regarding where Penn State is right now, the flaws in Louis Freeh's report, and what Penn State needs to accomplish moving forward as a community. The Penn State reputation and even the livelihoods of those who live in State College are now being threatened by the misinformation being reported by the national media.

Joe Paterno statue will be torn down this weekend

Statue will be torn down this weekend

According to my sources at Penn State Universtity, the decision has been made to tear down the statue of legendary football coach, Joe Paterno. The statue will come down this weekend. Apparently the decision to tear down the statue was made by Penn State interim President Rodney Erickson after consulting with members of the Board of Trustees in a conference call last night.

Erickson and the Penn State Board of Trustees have chosen to cave to the mounting pressure by national media outlets and the possibility of severe NCAA sanctions against the football program by deciding to tear down the statue this weekend. Personally, I feel this is the culmination of just how poorly the Penn State administration and Board of Trustees have handled this story since if first broke last November.

From refusing to allow Coach Paterno to have his press conference, to coach Paterno's firing, to the awful embarrassment of the Freeh Report and all of it's flaws; the Board of Trustees at Penn State have made one bad decision after another. They lack the currage to stand together and correct the large amount of misinformation that has been reported by national media outlets regarding the Sandusky sccandal. In fact, with the release of the Freeh Report they have even made things worse.

It doesn't take rocket scientist to identify the severe lack of evidence in the Louis Freeh report. The report is filled with Louis Freeh's assumptions and accusations based on scribbled notes and vague emails that he assumes references Paterno. Since it's release several sources have laid out the report's flaws, but yet the national media keep reporting that, "Joe Paterno and former Penn State officials covered up evidence that protected a pedophile since 1998" despite no credible evidence in the Freeh Report suggesting this as fact. President Rodney Erickson and the Board of Trustees have failed to set the facts of the Sandusky Scandal straight and the media continues to define the message and image of Penn State.

Now one week after the garbage report (Freeh Report) was released, Joe Paterno's statue will be torn down.

Penn State fans and alumni should be outraged today. The statue of the greatest college football coach will be torn down this weekend and this will no doubt be the defining moment of this scandal. Paterno will forever be linked with Sandusky's abuse of children once the statue comes down. Paterno will no longer be remember for the wonderful things he did for our university or for the players he coached. If the statue comes down, Coach Paterno will always be remembered for this abuse scandal which he really had nothing to do with.

No one will remember that Paterno never was afforded due process during this entire scandal up to this point. Or remember that coach Paterno never had a chance to defend himself against the hearsay and accusations of the Freeh report. No one will remember that Paterno was the only person that followed protocol and the law by reporting the abuse to his superiors while Penn State janitors, the president of the Second Mile foundation, and the incompetent staff at Centre County Children and Youth get to exit stage left without anyone noticing.

Jul 19, 2012

1998: So Close to an End for Sandusky - Who Interfered and Why?

Guest Column by Barry Bozeman,

A SMOKING GUN IN THE FREEH REPORT that focuses on the real reason Sandusky was not discovered in 1998? This information comes directly from the Freeh Report and a little research. Freeh's investigators got some good information - but did they fail to connect the dots and follow the trail? This is what I discovered - you will have to determine it's value and impact. I hope it is not divisive since it has little to do with the actions or inaction of Joe, Tim or Gary in 2001 and only involves what could have been known in 1998 but slipped away due to a colossal mistake or a hidden hand.

Brief Summary: In 1998 CYS is replaced by DPW in the Victim 6 investigation and in the process A.Chambers damning psychological evaluation is hidden from DPW investigator Lauro. Instead a CYS counselor who worked with The Second Mile gives a "pedophile free" evaluation over the objection of DA Arnold to Lauro who advises Gricar to close the case. Sandusky goes undiscovered. Sounds downright Machiavellian but the Freeh Report reveals that's what happened. Ironic isn't it? Freeh could have actually cleared Joe and PSU and discovered the real reason that Sandusky was not found out in 1998?

Why did the 98 investigation get side tracked? Who caused it? Or was it just a terrible mistake? This is a serious question that should be investigated by someone not influenced by PA politicians. Someone at the State level had to OK the hand-off from CYS to DPW and knew about the Chambers report that could have ended this whole affair before it cost Joe and PSU so much. The Seasock report is what left Sandusky in place at PSU and The Second Mile but only PSU, Joe, Tim, Gary and Spanier got burned because of it. From the Freeh Report Page 43
Detective Schreffler contacted John Miller, a caseworker with Centre County Children & Youth Services (CYS) about the allegation. However, there were several conflicts of interest with CYS's involvement in the case. CYS had contracts with the Second Mile - including placement of children in 2M residential program & the Second Mile CEO Raykovitz had a contract with CYS to conduct evaluations. The referral sheet from psychologist Chambers indicated the case might involve a CYS foster child. In light of these conflicts, the Dept of Public Welfare (DPW) took over the case on May 5. DPW officials in Harrisburg, PA took the lead because of Sandusky's high profile and assigned it to caseworker Jerry Lauro replacing John Miller.
So the CYS John Miller who knew about Psychologist Alycia Chambers report was replaced because of a "conflict" with The Second Mile. Since Second Mile CEO Raykovitz had a contract with CYS to do evaluations someone there could easily have tipped him or someone in the Attorney General's office off about Chambers Sandusky damning evaluation and the stink it would raise about The Second Mile. Corbett was an early member of the 2M Board along with several other prominent political figures. Would they find it "inconvenient" if this shining star in the 1000 Points of Light was dimmed by this report? Would it launch an investigation that might reflect badly on them and the cash cow that was beginning to generate some significant income and assets while funneling money to certain candidates for high office?

May 4-6, Police Report, Initial Investigation and Psychological Evaluation
On May 4, Victim 6's mother called Alycia Chambers, a licensed psychologist who had been working with her son, to see if she was overreacting to Sandusky's showering with her son. The boy told Schreffler what happened with Sandusky the previous evening, and added that a 10-year-old friend of his had been in a shower with Jerry on another occasion where Sandusky similarly squeezed the friend. Chambers made a report to the PA child abuse line and consulted with colleagues. Her colleagues agreed that the incidents meet all of our definitions, based on experience and education, of a likely pedophile's pattern of building trust and gradual introduction of physical touch, within a context of a "loving, special relationship
Wow -note that Chambers uncovered a second victim of a Sandusky shower right then who is never mentioned again. if only Jerry Lauro had known of Chambers evaluation? What would he have done then? Freeh Report Page 43

On May 7, Chambers provided a copy of her written report to Det. Schreffler. Chambers said she was pleased with the response ot the agencies involved, as the gravity of the incidents seems to be well appreciated. Also on May 7, Lauro interviewed the boy's mother. According to Schreffler's notes, Lauro had received copies of the boy's recorded statement, yet Lauro advised the Special Investigative Counsel that he did not have full access to the facts of the case and was unaware of psychologist Chambers' evaluation. Lauro said that if he "had seen Chambers report, I would not have stopped the investigation", which he thought at the time fell into a "gray" area and involved possible "boundary issues" Schreffler had a discussion with AD Arnold that day as well. Arnold told Schreffler to postpone a second psychological evaluation of the boy until an additional investigation could be completed. Nonetheless, a second evaluation of the boy occurred on May 8, as part of DPW's investigation.

Obviously Lauro would have continued to investigate and certainly he would not have concluded "no criminal behavior"

CYS is a Centre County Organization but DPW Dept. of Public Welfare is state. If someone on the State level wanted to quash a damning psychological examination what would they do and why? Who could cause this take over and why? Or was it just particularly sloppy work by a confused system of conflicting agencies. People don't give Joe Tim or Gary a break for not reporting to these agencies but given this track record would it have made a difference? This mistake was made in error or with help from a guiding hand. Seems like it would be a good idea to find out which does it not?

The 1998 situation was so very close to getting to the truth of Jerry Sandusky - if Lauro or Gricar had known of Chambers evaluation and the 2nd "victim" it would have all ended right there but somebody stepped in and because of "conflicts" put the State's DPW in charge keeping Chambers report a secret. It certainly wasn't Paterno or PSU administrators - it had to be someone connected to The Second Mile and the state government. In the final result the conclusions of Jerry Lauro - "there was no criminal behavior" and Seasock - "no pedophile tendencies" were the result of not knowing what Psychologist Chambers had found and that led to a situation where a Head Coach, Athletic Director, and VP for Finance could only be aware that Sandusky was investigated and cleared leading them with good reason to believe his showering with boys was nothing much to be concerned about. Had they known of Chambers and her colleagues opinions it could have made a significant difference. So who changed the agencies and how was that report kept from Lauro? Who gave Seasock the go ahead that led to his "pedophile free:" evaluation?

Tom Ridge was the Gov at the time and someone with a knowledge of PA politics will have to get into any connection to The Second Mile or the BOT at PSU. Mike Fisher was then Attorney General and he was preceded by Tom Corbett now Gov. Both Ridge and Fisher were appointed to Federal office by George W Bush. Wonder if there was any relationship to The Second Mile here like there is with Corbett? From th e Milton Hershey Protect the Children

Mike Fisher served as AG from 1997 to 2004. One of AG Fisher's inappropriate activities he failed to investigate and prosecute pedophile Charles Koons even though his molestation of an MHS student had been reported to authorities in the late 1980s. Fisher further exacerbated dysfunction at MHS by his failure to replace self-serving Trust Board members with child care experts. Instead he continued the tenure of some Board members who were part of the problem and appointed non-child care experts to replace those removed from the Board. IS FISHER THE PROBLEM?

Mike Fisher was also the Attorney General when the inappropriate behavior of Jerry Sandusky, State College, PA pedophile, was first reported by the victim's mother to PSU police in May 1998. The complaint was referred to Ray Gricar, DA of Centre County, PA. Gricar initially assigned the case to Assistant DA Karen Arnold. Gricar took the case from Arnold after two or three days, saying he was going to handle it personally. No charges were filed by Gricar or Fisher against Sandusky. Ron Schreffler, PSU police investigator, helped produce a report about the 1998 Sandusky incident that was referred to Gricar. That report, although highly sought after, is missing.
Hold the presses - Is the real reason for the Attorney General going after Paterno and PSU coming into focus? Who better than a deceased icon to distract attention away from some very powerful politicians with every reason to want the world to focus on anything else but their interference in 1998. Mike Fisher and the Board for the Second Mile are part of a group that secured over $200,000 for the Corbett Campaign while Corbett was supposedly investigating Sandusky. Why did the Chambers psych evaluation never make it from CYS to Jerry Lauro and DPW? Was someone protecting Sandusky and the Second Mile?

More from the Freeh Report p 42

" Schreffler had a discussion with Karen Arnold, Centre County prosecutor in the District Attorney's office, that day as well. Arnold told Schreffer to postpone a second psychological evaluation of the boy until an additional investigation could be completed. Nonetheless, a second evaluation of the boy occurred on May 8, as part of DPW's investigation. Counselor John Seasock,opined that "there seems to be no incident which could be termed as sexual abuse, nor did there appear to be any sequential pattern of logic and behavior which is usually consistent with adults who have difficulty with sexual abuse of children." Seasock's report ruled out that the boy "had been placed in a situation where he was being "groomed for future sexual victimization.*
Why did CYS evaluator Seasock go ahead with this evaluation when DA Arnold instructed it not be done? What additional investigation was Arnold having done? Did that stop when Gricar took over? It seems strange that DPW would use a CYS Evaluator after deciding that CYS had a conflict of interest with The Second Mile. Does someone from the state or The Second Mile want to have Seasock's report instead of Chambers go to Lauro at DPW? Is that why Arnold's directive was ignored? Who could arrange that and go over DA Arnold's head?

Joe could not have done this - nor Gary or Tim. This had to come from The Second Mile who used Seasock as an evaluator or someone on the state level who could influence DPW investigator Lauro's use of the Seasock report while concealing the existence of the Chambers evaluation. Or am I way off base here? Was this just a simple oversight with disastrous consequences for PSU and Joe? Why isn't Freeh asking these questions? Why does he not point out this rather obvious reason Sandusky was not stopped in 1998 and why Joe and the others may have believed Jerry to be harmless when it was clear to Chambers he was not?
On May 9, 1998, Schreffler discussed the outcome ot Seasock's evaluation with Seasock. While Seasock said he identified some "gray areas," he did not find evidence of abuse and had never heard of a 52-year-old man "becoming a pedophile." When Schreffer questioned Seasock's awareness of details of the boy's experience, Seasock acknowledged he was not aware of many of the concerns Schreffler raised but stated Sandusky "didn't fit the profile of a pedophile and that he couldn't find any indication of child abuse.
This counselor Seasock evaluation is completely opposite of psychologist Chamber's evaluation and was a mistake of monumental ill effect for Joe and PSU. If Jerry had been labeled a potential pedophile in 1998 it would have been a minor blip compared to what has happened. He would have been identified as a potential pedophile for those showers in 1998 and closely watched away from The Second Mile and PSU. Perhaps the earlier victims would have been discovered and perhaps not but he would never have been in that shower in 2001 or if he was and Joe, Tim and Gary knew of the Chambers evaluation it would have ended right then for him. If they knew of Chambers evaluation in 98 instead of Seasock's there should have been no hesitation about involving authorities and faith in those authorities would not have been misplaced.

DA Arnold didn't interfere in the CYS/DPW investigation or the Chambers evaluation and neither did Joe, Tim or Gary - it had to come from The Second Mile or the State level for Seasock to ever get involved and Seasock's involvement led to the "no pedophile profile" finding that kept key people at PSU from knowing how dangerous Sandusky might be. Had Chambers and her colleagues evaluation been common knowledge it would have made all the difference and if Lauro had known and kept investigating he may have found victim 4 in 1998. If Gricar had left it with Karen Arnold there could have been charges. Isn't it at least reasonable to insist that someone find out who authorized Seasock's evaluation and who concealed Chambers along with who engineered the DPW takeover of the case from CYS?

You can read more complete version of this on the Second Mile Sandusky Scandal site more detailed and longer with more information on the Second Mile and Raykovitz. If this information was projected as much as the "coach is anxious to know" email there would be a far different opinion of Joe and PSU in the world today.

Barry Bozeman is the Editor and owner of The Second Mile Sandusky Scandal Weblog, the most complete collection of information on what has been unfairly labeled The Penn State Sex Scandal.

Jul 17, 2012

Freind: An open letter to Gov. Corbett on Sandusky affair

An open letter to Pennsylvania’s governor, who refuses to answer disturbing questions about his role investigating the Penn State sex scandal:

Bursting with righteous indignation, his cheeks flushed with rage, the governor banged the podium in disgust while berating a journalist - in fact, chastising the entire media - for the audacity to ask questions on the issue.

We’re not talking about New Jersey’s Chris Christie, who gets away with such outbursts because of his stellar track record and pure gravitas.

No, this tantrum came from Pennsylvania’s Tom Corbett after being queried about his incredibly long investigation of child predator Jerry Sandusky.

And it backfired in spectacular fashion. Why?

Because Tom Corbett is no Chris Christie.

Since questions on this matter remain unanswered, it seems only fitting, on behalf of the media and public, to pen an open letter to Mr. Corbett.

For the record, no media commentator in Pennsylvania supported Corbett’s ideas more than Freindly Fire during the 2010 campaign, from increased Marcellus Shale drilling to school choice to liquor privatization. In fact, FF even backed Corbett’s decision to subpoena Twitter during the Bonusgate corruption probe - a highly unpopular position. Bottom line: this isn’t personal, and it’s not partisan. It’s only about one thing: the truth.

Dear Gov. Corbett:

Since there are a number of questions which you have failed to answer concerning your investigation of Jerry Sandusky, on behalf of the media and the public, I respectfully ask for clarification in the following areas:

1) Based on a decade’s worth of evidence of Sandusky’s predatory activities, why did it take the Attorney General’s Office three years to arrest him? I fully understand that it takes time to conduct an investigation, but as numerous prosecutors have stated, you could have arrested him quickly and continued building the case.

Tragically, it is probable that Sandusky continued to molest victims during your epic investigation, as predators do not stop preying unless forced to do so. Had he been arrested early, (standard procedure in many cases with a lot less evidence), Sandusky would have had to post bail, had restrictions placed upon him, and, most important, been under an ultra-intense media and community spotlight - every minute of every day until his trial.

In short, children would finally have been safe. And contrary to your assessment, this would have created a much more favorable environment for additional witnesses to come forward, knowing their bigger-than-life demon could hurt them no more. Arresting Sandusky quickly would have in no way jeopardized the strength of the case.

One of two things seems to be true, as there is no third option. Either A) you were an incompetent attorney general, which virtually no one believes, or B) the investigation was deliberately understaffed and drawn out because you did not wish to be the gubernatorial candidate who took down fabled Penn State - with its massive and intensely loyal alumni network - and the beloved Joe Paterno. Since doing so would have presented difficult campaign challenges, many are asking if politics was placed above children’s safety. Which leads to the next question.

2) Why was the investigation so understaffed? Yes, you just now claimed - after eight months - that media reports are wrong that only one investigator was assigned the case for the first 15 months. The real number, as you now state, was a whopping two. We know you were busy with Bonusgate, but political corruption never threatens anyone’s physical well-being, particularly defenseless children.

And the two investigators assigned were narcotics agents. While Sandusky’s heinous crimes were many, drug offenses were not among them.

Yes, they were former police officers. But wouldn’t the reasonable course have been to assign agents with experience in child molestation cases? Did their inexperience lengthen the investigation more than normal … say, past your election in November 2010?

Additional resources were available. Upon becoming governor, you placed state police on the case. You could have made that same request to Gov. Ed Rendell, and, given the stakes, there is virtually no possibility he would have refused. And since you are a former United States attorney, you undoubtedly realized that federal assistance was also available.

3) Do you believe ethical and moral lines were crossed when, after investigating Penn State as Attorney General, you then participated as a member of the Board of Trustees upon becoming governor?

In other words, knowing full well that the investigation was still in full swing, conducted by your handpicked attorney general successor, you nonetheless chose to sit on the very board you had been - and still were - investigating!

Did you ever consider recusing yourself from board activities until the investigation was concluded? Since governors rarely attend board meetings, this would have in no way raised suspicions.

4) As governor, why did you personally approve a $3 million taxpayer-funded grant to Sandusky’s Second Mile charity, given your knowledge that Sandusky was under investigation for multiple child rapes?

Your statement that blocking the grant would have tipped people off to the investigation is utterly disingenuous, particularly since the media reported on the investigation in March, and you did not approve the funds until July 2011.

Vetoing the charitable grant would have simply been viewed as another financial cutback in a budget full of slashed programs.

So one has to ask if the $640,000 in campaign donations from board members of the Second Mile, along with their businesses and families, had anything to do with your actions?

If not, fine. But how did such a massively significant point slip your mind - until the media brought it up? And was that question also out of line?

Since these are matters of grave concern, I and many others look forward to your immediate response.

The media talks about Penn State’s Big Four casualties: Joe Paterno, former President Graham Spanier, Senior Vice President Gary Schultz, and Athletic Director Timothy M. Curley. But perhaps they are missing the biggest: Tom Corbett.

He has always claimed to hold himself to a higher standard, and has roundly criticized Paterno and others for not doing more to stop Sandusky. But when it came down to it, when Corbett had the power to put a speedy end to Sandusky, he didn’t.

If mistakes were made, fine. People can accept that. But to stonewall reasonable questions on such an important matter, and then stalk off , is something that should not, and will not, be tolerated.

Tom Corbett has a choice, perhaps the biggest of his career. He can either answer now - or in 2014.

Chris Freind is an independent columnist, television/radio commentator, and investigative reporter who operates his own news bureau, He can be reached at

Jul 16, 2012

Paterno Family Issues Statement Criticizing Freeh Report

This morning the following statement was released by the Paterno family lawyer, Wick Sollers, calling for further examination of the Freeh Report. In the statement, Mr. Sollers and the Paterno family feel that Mr. Freeh misled public opinion by focusing heavily on assumptions and assurtions that were backed by little credible evidence. They want to make it clear that they "vehemently disagree" with Freeh's conclusions. The following is the full statement released this morning.
"Following the release of the grand jury findings last fall, Joe Paterno called for a thorough, fair and transparent investigation. Like everyone else, Joe was stunned at the charges that were filed against Jerry Sandusky. At the same time, Joe cautioned against a rush to judgment on Penn State and its senior officials and reminded everyone that we owed it to the victims to uncover the full truth.

"The announcement of the findings by the Freeh Group is yet another shocking turn of events in this crisis. We are dismayed by, and vehemently disagree with, some of the conclusions and assertions and the process by which they were developed. Mr. Freeh presented his opinions and interpretations as if they were absolute facts. We believe numerous issues in the report, and his commentary, bear further review.

"Our interest has been and remains the uncovering of the truth. We have never tried to run from this crisis or shift all responsibility to others. To help prevent this sort of tragedy from happening again at Penn State or any other institution, it is imperative that the full story be told.

"After the report was released, we instructed our attorneys and their experts to conduct a comprehensive review of the materials released by the Freeh Group as well as Mr. Freeh's presentation and press conference. We have also asked them to go beyond the report and identify additional information that should be analyzed. And we have asked the Freeh Group to preserve all records, notes and other materials related to the investigation and the presentation of their findings as we expect they will be the subject of great interest in the future.

"To those who are convinced that the Freeh report is the last word on this matter, that is absolutely not the case. Since various investigations and legal cases are still pending, it is highly likely that additional critical information will emerge.

"With that said, we want to take this opportunity to reiterate that Joe Paterno did not shield Jerry Sandusky from any investigation or review. The 1998 incident was fully and independently investigated by law enforcement officials. The Freeh report confirms this. It is also a matter of record that Joe Paterno promptly and fully reported the 2001 incident to his superiors. It can certainly be asserted that Joe Paterno could have done more. He acknowledged this himself last fall. But to claim that he knowingly, intentionally protected a pedophile is false.

"The process of reviewing the report and other relevant information is going to be a complicated and time consuming exercise. It took the Freeh Group roughly seven months to conduct more than 400 interviews and review three million documents. We do not expect or intend to duplicate this effort but we are going to be as thorough as reasonably possible. In the meantime, our attorneys have asked that we not make any further comment on this matter until they are ready to provide an update on their progress."
I've already stated in a previous post that I was surprised just how little evidence Freeh based his conclusions on during his press conference. After further review of the report, there is no doubt that the report is garbage. When an investigator has to change the context and wording of emails to support his opinions instead of focusing on the truth, one has to wonder what Freeh's true motivations were during this entire investigation.