Penn State Scandal
By IVEY DEJESUS, The Patriot-News
Child Line, the state-run hotline for reporting suspected child abuse on average receives about 2,300 calls a week. In the wake of the charges of child sexual abuse charges against former Penn State assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky, the number of calls to the hotline doubled.
Between Nov. 7 and 11, the days immediately following the initial Sandusky arrest, Child Line received 4,832 calls of suspected physical, mental or sexual child abuse.
The following week, Nov. 14-18, the hotline logged 2,866 calls.
Students gather for a candle light vigil held in front of Old Main on the campus of Penn State University to honor the victims of sexual abuse in the wake of the Jerry Sandusky scandal. State College , Pa.11/09/2011 SEAN SIMMERS, THE PATRIOT-NEWS
Penn State candlelight vigil gallery (6 photos)
The dramatic events that have toppled the biggest names at Penn State, including legendary coach Joe Paterno, have thrust the issue of child sexual abuse front and center and have led to an increase in the reporting of suspected abuse and actual abuse.
"It's more of a guess than anything but when you have a high profile case such as the one that happened in Penn State. It got national attention. Our guess is that that increases awareness," said Carey Miller, a spokeswoman for the state Department of Welfare, which runs Child Line. "It's in the front of their mind. If they happen to see something that they might question as suspected abuse they are going to call it in."
Officials at the Pennsylvania Coalition Against Rape say calls to its 51 rape crisis centers hotlines have spiked in the past month.
"Clearly this case has made a lot more people in the state say I need to learn more about this topic and I need to know what to look for," said PCAR spokeswoman Kristen Houser.
A significant volume of the calls were made by mandated reporters seeking information on prevention, education and resources, Houser said.Read more...
By Jeremy Roebuck and Amy Worden, Inquirer Staff Writers
HARRISBURG - Mike McQueary was unequivocal: When he stumbled upon former Pennsylvania State University defensive coordinator Jerry Sandusky and a naked boy in a university shower nine years ago, he witnessed something "way over the line and extremely sexual in nature."
And that, the assistant Penn State football coach testified before a Dauphin County judge Friday, was what he told two university officials - athletic director Tim Curley and then-vice president Gary Schultz - when they questioned him about the 2002 incident.
"There's no question in my mind that I conveyed to them that I saw Jerry with a boy in the showers and that there were severe sexual acts going on," McQueary testified in his first public statements since Sandusky's arrest last month.
State prosecutors allege Curley and Schultz later lied to a grand jury about what they were told by McQueary, saying he had described a much milder tale of horseplay.
District Judge William C. Wenner ruled Friday that enough evidence existed to move their case to trial on the charges of perjury and failing to report what they learned to authorities.
Attorneys for Curley and Schultz said McQueary never told their clients the full extent of what he claimed to have seen on that March night.
"Had he heard from Mike McQueary that this boy in the shower was being sexually sodomized or anally raped, he would have remembered that and done something about it," said Curley's attorney, Caroline Roberto.Read more...
MARYCLAIRE DALE and MARK SCOLFORO
HARRISBURG, Pa. - A Penn State assistant football coach testified Friday that he believes he saw former assistant coach Jerry Sandusky sexually molesting a boy but said he wasn't 100 percent sure it was intercourse.
Mike McQueary, speaking for the first time in public about the 2002 encounter, said he truly believes what he saw in a Penn State locker room was intercourse.
McQueary took the stand Friday in a Pennsylvania courtroom during a preliminary hearing for two school officials accused of lying to a grand jury about the child sex-abuse allegations against Sandusky.
McQueary said he saw Sandusky was behind a boy he estimated to be 10 or 12 years old, with his hands wrapped around the boy's waist. He said the boy was facing a wall, with his hands on it.
He said he peeked into the shower several times and that the last time he looked in, Sandusky and the boy had separated. He said he didn't say anything, but "I know they saw me. They looked directly in my eye, both of them."
McQueary said he reported what he saw to coach Joe Paterno.
He said he did not give Paterno explicit details of what he believed he'd seen, saying he wouldn't have used terms like sodomy or anal intercourse out of respect for the longtime coach.
He said Paterno told him he'd "done the right thing" by reporting what he saw. The head coach appeared shocked and saddened and slumped back in his chair, McQueary said.Read more...
MARYCLAIRE DALE and MARK SCOLFORO
HARRISBURG, Pa. - A Penn State assistant football coach testified Friday that he believes he saw former assistant coach Jerry Sandusky molesting a boy on campus and that he fully conveyed what he had seen to two Penn State administrators.
Mike McQueary, speaking for the first time in public about the 2002 encounter in a Penn State locker room, said he believes that Sandusky was attacking the child with his hands around the boy's waist but said he wasn't 100 percent sure it was intercourse.
McQueary took the stand Friday morning in a Pennsylvania courtroom during a preliminary hearing for university officials Tim Curley and Gary Schultz, who are accused of lying to a grand jury about what McQueary told them.
District Judge William C. Wenner was hearing testimony Friday to help him decide whether prosecutors have enough evidence against the pair to send their cases to trial. The hearing was expected to last most of the day.
McQueary's story is central to the case against Curley and Schultz. They testified to the grand jury that McQueary never relayed the seriousness of what he saw. The officials, and Penn State coach Joe Paterno, have been criticized for never telling police about the 2002 allegation. Prosecutors say Sandusky continued to abuse boys for six more years.Read more...
Rich Hofmann, Daily News Sports Columnist
Is about-face on Sandusky's hearing genius or folly?
BELLEFONTE - "Isn't anybody else cold?" Joe Amendola asked at one point, standing at microphones set up in front of the courthouse steps, about halfway through a news conference that might have lasted an hour.
It might have lasted longer than an hour, but I'm not sure because I left. The attorney for Jerry Sandusky was right about at least one thing: It was cold.
Inside the Centre County Courthouse, the whole thing didn't last much more than a minute; oyez, oyez - sidebar, over. Sandusky, the former Penn State assistant football coach accused of sexual misconduct involving 10 young boys - 10 and counting, perhaps - decided at the last minute to waive his right to a preliminary hearing of the accusations against him. Instead, he entered a plea of not guilty and began the process of being judged on the 50-odd counts lodged against him. Arraignment is set for Jan. 11, but Sandusky will not appear.
Reporters with seats inside the courtroom missed the nauseating quote of the day, from Sandusky, after it was over. He said, "We fully intend to put together the best possible defense and stay the course for four full quarters."
This is the best he could come up with. This is the depth of the man. An accused sexual predator, he reached for a football cliche to describe his legal situation. Sandusky did everything but hold up four fingers as he and his ankle bracelet got into a vehicle and headed home.
And Amendola was worse.Read more...
John Baer, Daily News Political Columnist
BELLEFONTE - The event that was supposed to be the biggest thing to hit this burg since the last public hanging in 1911 was over in a New York minute.
That's how long it took alleged pedophile Jerry Sandusky to waive his right to a preliminary hearing on charges that he abused 10 boys over 15 years.
The courtroom was packed. The prosecution was ready. The defense sought a sidebar. And that was all she wrote.
An out-of-central-casting, ruddy-faced, white-haired senior magistrate, Robert Scott, 74, imported from Westmoreland County since everyone here has Penn State links, had Sandusky say that he understood the move - and then he shut down the show.
So the borough of 6,000 in the Nittany Valley, 10 miles north of the university, gets its streets reopened, gets its parking spaces back, returns to its normal trash-pickup schedule.
And the media circus climbs back onto the merry-go-round.
Why the dive? Which side gains? Is a plea agreement in the works?Read more...
BY SARA GANIM AND JEFF FRANTZ, The Patriot-News
December 08, 2011
Missed opportunities are a heartrending theme in the case against Jerry Sandusky.
- An alleged victim's cries for help from the Sandusky basement, according to grand jury testimony.
- Another alleged victim telling his foster parent that he no longer wanted to spend time with Sandusky.
- Reports of a groping in an outdoor pool on the Penn State campus.
Prosecutors say that two more alleged victims have testified to the grand jury about those calls for help and how they were ignored. Their testimony has led to more child sex crimes charges against the 67-year-old Centre County man.
Sandusky now faces more than 50 charges involving 10 alleged victims. All of the charges are expected to be fought at a preliminary hearing in Bellefonte on Tuesday.
His attorney, Joe Amendola, said he will be prepared to fight and does not expect the new charges to lead to a continuance of the hearing.
Clad in a Penn State wrestling track suit, sneakers and a sweatshirt, the former assistant football coach credited with turning Penn State into "Linebacker U" sat silently as a judge decided he would spend the night in jail. Sandusky was unable to post $250,000 cash bail fast enough to meet the end-of-the-day deadline.
Amendola said Wednesday night he expected his client to be released today, and if he is, he'll be confined to his home with an ankle monitor. Sandusky is still prohibited from having contact with children.
Sandusky had nothing to say to reporters as he was led away from the courtroom by state troopers.Read more...
By GENARO C. ARMAS, Associated Press
STATE COLLEGE, Pa. (AP) — Jerry Sandusky's arrest on additional child sex-abuse charges presents him with a new challenge — how to assist his lawyer from behind bars in what was already a complicated case to defend.
"You really prefer to have your client available to you at all times," said William Manifesto, a longtime Pittsburgh defense attorney not involved in the case. "The most difficult thing for counsel, for anyone who's in jail, is the ability to communicate."
Sandusky was jailed Wednesday after new child sex abuse charges were filed against him based on the claims of two new accusers, including one who says he screamed in vain for help while Sandusky attacked him in a basement bedroom.
Sex-crime cases that have more alleged victims — and prosecutors added two to Sandusky's case with the latest charges — tend to be stronger, said Lancaster County District Attorney Craig Stedman.
"Victims do often gather courage from the fact that others have come forward and it is not unusual for new victims to surface when multiple sex offense violations have been filed and become public," Stedman said.Read more...
By Jeff Gammage, Inquirer Staff Writer
For people who work to stop the sexual abuse of children, the horror of the allegations at Pennsylvania State University has offered something unexpected: opportunity.
The continuing national and international news coverage is fostering discussion of a disturbing, discomfiting topic that's often ignored, experts and advocates say.
"The window is open right now to have these conversations," said Pastor Aaron Anderson, a board member of Prevent Child Abuse Pennsylvania, based in Media. "But it will close because people will close their eyes to how horrific it is."
News about Penn State - coupled with a call to recognize child abuse as the nation's top public-health issue - dominates the front page of the PCAPA website.
The website of Lauren's Kids, a Florida awareness and legislation group, features a prominent photo of Joe Paterno, fired as coach of the Penn State football team after former assistant coach Jerry Sandusky was charged with abusing eight boys over 15 years.
Mission Kids, a Blue Bell agency that seeks to ease the criminal-justice process for abused children, has seized the moment by posting news and information on Facebook, Twitter, and the agency website, and by talking with members of the media.
"Child abuse is the last great taboo in American culture," said Abbie Newman, executive director of Mission Kids. "We talk about all other kinds of sex without hesitation."Read more...
The Legal Obstacles Relating to Syracuse University's Sex Abuse Scandal
MARCI A. HAMILTON,
As of this writing, three (maybe four) men have come forward to allege that, as boys, they were sexually abused by Syracuse associate head basketball coach Bernie Fine. At first, Fine's boss, the legendary Jim Boeheim, stood by Fine and attacked the first two men, Bobby Davis and Mike Lang, claiming that they were just doing it for the money.
How wrong he was. Boeheim was smart to back off after a third man, Zach Tomaselli, came forward—for it is virtually certain that Davis and Lang were not doing it for the money; for those two, there appears to be little or none to be had.
New York's Too Short Statutes of Limitations for Abuse Cases Would Likely Cut Off All Recovery of Damages by Davis and Lang
Davis, 39, and Lang, 45, cannot bring civil lawsuits in New York or pursue prosecution under New York's state law, because New York has some of the worst statutes of limitations in the United States. They are positively barbaric.
In New York, for anything other than a first-degree felony sexual assault occurring after 2006, the statute of limitations ("SOL") cuts off prosecution when the victim is 23, at the latest. For civil claims, too, a victim would have had to file his suit by age 23 at the very latest, and likely much earlier than that. Thus, Davis's and Lang's ages alone prove that they simply can't be in this "for the money." All appearances suggest that all they are "in it" for is justice.
Pennsylvania Law May Allow Tomaselli to File Civil Claims, and May Also Allow a Criminal ProsecutionRead more...
By Debra Erdley, PITTSBURGH TRIBUNE-REVIEW
Two attorneys who have filed multiple lawsuits for victims in the Philadelphia archdiocese priest sex scandal filed the first lawsuit in the Penn State child sex-abuse scandal on Wednesday.
The complaint, filed in state court in Philadelphia, contains new allegations from a 29-year-old man known as John Doe A. He says former Penn State assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky, whom he met through The Second Mile charity when he was 10, molested him more than 100 times between 1992 and 1996 and threatened to harm his family if he told anyone.
Attorneys Jeff Anderson and Marci Hamilton, who have been prominent figures in sexual abuse litigation against the Catholic Church, filed the lawsuit. It claims Sandusky abused the man between the time he was 10 and 14 at various locations, including the coach's State College home, a Penn State locker room, on trips to Philadelphia and a bowl game.
"I never told anybody what he did to me over 100 times at all kinds of places until the newspapers reported that he had abused other kids and the people at Penn State and Second Mile didn't do the things they should have to protect me and the other kids. I am hurting and have been for a long time because of what happened but feel now even more tormented that I have learned of so many other kids (who) were abused after me," the man said in a written statement.Read more...
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