Email recovery slowing Sandusky review

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HARRISBURG -- Pennsylvania's attorney general says an internal investigation into the office's handling of the Jerry Sandusky child abuse case is ongoing, and she provided no timeline for the completion of the year-old probe.

The process has been slowed by "challenges" in obtaining documents and emails previously thought to be unrecoverable.

Attorney General Kathleen Kane's office provided a brief statement on the matter Wednesday, as it marked approximately one year since Ms. Kane appointed a former federal prosecutor to lead the review.

Ms. Kane, a Democrat, made reviewing the attorney general's investigation -- while it was under the direction of now-Gov. Tom Corbett, a Republican -- a central pledge of her 2012 campaign. Sandusky, a former Penn State University assistant football coach, was convicted in 2012 of sexually abusing 10 boys and is serving a 30- to 60-year sentence.

"The release of the review findings will be determined only by the time necessary to complete a comprehensive review," said the statement from Ms. Kane. "I remain fully committed to that approach."

The review is being led by H. Geoffrey Moulton Jr., a former federal prosecutor for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, and former chief counsel to U.S. Sen. Ted Kaufman, D-Del.

"Mr. Moulton has been both thorough and diligent, reviewing and analyzing a substantial documentary record and, despite not having the power to compel testimony through subpoena, interviewing a wide range of witnesses," said Ms. Kane's statement.

The review has been slowed by "challenges in obtaining important written records, particularly emails. For reasons that will be described in more detail when the report is made public, until last fall we believed that [Office of Attorney General] emails for the relevant time period had been permanently removed from OAG storage systems (pursuant to a then-existing document-retention policy) and were unrecoverable. Since then, we have developed a recovery process that is ongoing," the statement said.

Ms. Kane's statement said two other factors could complicate the final release of the report: because "the report will discuss matters occurring before the grand jury that have not previously been made public, the OAG will need judicial approval before releasing the report."

Additionally, "before the report is made public, due process and fairness require that certain individuals discussed in the report be afforded the opportunity to review and comment on those aspects of the report that pertain to them."

A spokesman for Mr. Corbett said:

"The governor is satisfied with the results of the Sandusky investigation. As an experienced prosecutor he has a full understanding of the complexity, the comprehensiveness and length of time needed to conduct a thorough review. He always had the goal to remove a child predator from the streets, and with the conviction of Mr. Sandusky on 45 of 48 counts, he did just that."


Kate Giammarise: kgiammarise@post-gazette.com, 717-787-4254. Karen Langley contributed.


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