2 PSU officials tied to sex case expected to surrender Monday
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A grand jury charged two Penn State University officials Saturday with perjury and failure to tell police of a report of the rape on campus of a young boy by Jerry Sandusky, a respected former defensive coordinator for the school's football team.
Mr. Sandusky has been charged with 40 counts of sexual assault, corruption of minors and other crimes in a wide-ranging pattern of sexual conduct against eight young boys between 1995 and 2009.
The officials, Athletics Director Tim Curley and Gary Schultz, senior vice president for finance and business, failed to report the assault against the boy, which occurred in a football locker room shower, after being told about it by head coach Joe Paterno and by an athletics staff member who witnessed it, according to state Attorney General Linda Kelly.
Mr. Curley and Mr. Schultz, prosecutors said, also tried to mislead a grand jury investigating Mr. Sandusky's sexual assaults on boys as young as 7. Mr. Schultz's position includes oversight of the university's police department.
(Warning: Contains graphic content)
"This is a case about a sexual predator who used his position within the university and community to prey on young boys," Ms. Kelly said. "It is also a case about high-ranking university officials who allegedly failed to report the sexual assault of a young boy after it was brought to their attention, and later made false statements to a grand jury that was investigating a series of assaults on young boys."
Mr. Sandusky met the boys during his involvement with the Second Mile, a group he founded that runs programs for at-risk children.
The university officials are expected to surrender to police on Monday morning, according to prosecutors. They will be arraigned in Dauphin County, where the alleged perjury occurred. Mr. Sandusky, 67, of State College, was arraigned Saturday morning in Centre County, where he was charged, and faces a preliminary hearing there Wednesday.
Their lawyers said the men are innocent of all charges, and will be exonerated in court. Mr. Sandusky's lawyer, Joe Amendola, could not be reached for comment Saturday, but told WJAC-TV in State College outside Saturday morning's arraignment hearing that Mr. Sandusky maintains his innocence.
"He's shaky, as you can expect," Mr. Amendola said. "Being 67 years old, never having faced criminal charges in his life and having the distinguished career that he's had, these are very serious allegations."
Mr. Sandusky retired from Penn State in 1999.
Penn State President Graham Spanier called the allegations against Mr. Sandusky "troubling" and said it is appropriate that the allegations be investigated thoroughly.
"Protecting children requires the utmost vigilance," he said in a statement.
Mr. Curley and Mr. Schultz however, had his unconditional support, he said.
"I have known and worked daily with Tim and Gary for more than 16 years," Mr. Spanier said in a statement. "I have complete confidence in how they have handled the allegations about a former University employee. Tim Curley and Gary Schultz operate at the highest levels of honesty, integrity and compassion. I am confident the record will show that these charges are groundless and that they conducted themselves professionally and appropriately."
The attorney general is continuing to investigate the case, according to a spokesman for Ms. Kelly. Additional charges in the case are possible.
In the grand jury's 23-page report on its findings, victims' testimony depicts a pattern of Mr. Sandusky befriending and then assaulting them that repeated itself over the years. Several victims, who ranged in age from 7 to 13 at the time, described meeting Mr. Sandusky at a Second Mile event, often at one of the group's camps at Penn State.
In many cases, Mr. Sandusky would invite the boy to a sporting event such as a Philadelphia Eagles game, according to victim testimony. At others, he would invite the boy to one of his own family's events.
Mr. Sandusky often gave the boys' gifts such as sports equipment and a computer, according to the presentment.
Sometimes Mr. Sandusky then would invite the boy to spend the night at his house, where he would sleep in a basement bedroom, or stay in a hotel with him and the rest of the football team prior to a home game, or to drive with him to work out at Penn State's athletic facilities. He took the boys to restaurants and Bowl games.
Then, during a swim at a hotel pool or a ride in the car, Mr. Sandusky would initiate some kind of contact, such as resting his hand on the boy's knee or rubbing his shoulders while the two stood naked in the football locker room's showers, the presentment states. Then, according to the grand jury, he would press his advance, sometimes stopping when a boy tried to resist or escape, and sometimes not.
One of the victims, identified in the presentment as Victim 1, testified that Mr. Sandusky would enter the basement bedroom after he told the victim to go to bed, lie down on the bed and pull the boy onto him, then crack his back and rub his buttocks while they lay face-to-face on the bed. Mr. Sandusky, whom the boy said he met in 2005 or 2006, ultimately performed oral sex on the boy more than 20 times, and had the boy perform oral sex on him once, by 2008, according to the grand jury report.
After the boy's mother reported the assaults to her son's high school in Clinton County, where Mr. Sandusky also volunteer coached, school officials barred him from the school district and reported the assaults to the police. The state police and attorney general's office then began the investigation that culminated in the grand jury charges against Mr. Sandusky, Mr. Curley and Mr. Schultz.
All the other boys were sexually assaulted in Penn State's facilities, including locker room showers at Lasch Football Building on the University Park campus, among other places, according to the presentment. Witnesses and victims testified that Mr. Sandusky pinned several of them against the wall of the showers before assaulting them.
The grand jury presentment also said that in 1998, university police and the Centre County district attorney investigated reports of Mr. Sandusky having inappropriate contact with young boys in the campus showers. The district attorney decided not to press charges and the campus police chief at the time ordered the university detectives investigating it to close the case, according to the grand jury report. Mr. Sandusky retired as coach the next year, but continued to have a presence on campus.
The case that set the investigation in motion started on March 1, 2002, when a 28-year-old Penn State graduate assistant entered the locker room at the Lasch Football Building to put some new sneakers in his locker and grab some recruiting tapes to watch. It was about 9:30 p.m.
Inside the locker room, the assistant was surprised to see the lights on and hear the showers running, the report states. When he looked into the showers, he saw a naked boy who appeared to be about 10 years old, with his hands up against the wall, being subjected to anal intercourse by a naked Mr. Sandusky, according to the witness' grand jury testimony. The boy and Mr. Sandusky both saw him, the witness testified.
The assistant told his father, who told him to tell Mr. Paterno. The assistant told Mr. Paterno what he saw, Mr. Paterno reported it to Mr. Curley and Mr. Schultz, who asked him to meet with them.
There, the assistant testified, he told Mr. Curley and Mr. Schultz that he had witnessed what he believed to be Mr. Sandusky having anal sex with a boy in the Lasch Building showers, according to the grand jury report. The two men assured the assistant they would look into the matter and let him know what action they took.
In a few weeks, Mr. Curley told the assistant Mr. Sandusky's keys to campus facilities were taken away and the incident had been reported to Second Mile, the report states. The assistant said he was never questioned by university police and no other entity investigated further until he testified before the grand jury in December 2010.
Mr. Curley also testified that he told Mr. Spanier of the information he received from the assistant and the steps he had taken to report the incident to Second Mile and bar Mr. Sandusky from bringing Second Mile boys onto campus.
"Mr. Curley was not specific about the language he used in reporting the 2002 incident to Spanier," the report states. "Spanier testified to his approval of the approach taken by Curley."
Mr. Curley did not report the incident to any police agency.
Mr. Schultz testified he was called to a meeting with Mr. Curley and Mr. Paterno, in which Mr. Paterno reported "disturbing" and "inappropriate" conduct by Mr. Sandusky against a young boy in the shower, as reported by the assistant.
"Schultz conceded that the report the graduate assistant made was of inappropriate sexual conduct by Sandusky," according to the report. "However, Schultz testified that the allegations were 'not that serious' and that he and Curley 'had no indication that a crime occurred.'"
Mr. Spanier testified that Mr. Curley and Mr. Schultz told him in 2002 of an incident by Mr. Sandusky that made a member of Mr. Curley's staff "uncomfortable," according to the report.
He described it as "Jerry Sandusky in the football building locker area in the shower ... with a younger child and that they were horsing around in the shower," the grand jury stated.
Mr. Spanier denied that incident was reported to him as something that was sexual in nature, according to the report. He also denied being aware of the 1998 university police investigation. The ban was "reviewed and approved by University President Graham Spanier without any further inquiry on his part," according to a statement by Ms. Kelly.
First Published November 6, 2011 12:00 am