Pennsylvania State University, home of the storied Nittany Lions football team and its legendary coach, Joe Paterno, was rocked by allegations that one of Paterno’s former assistants, Jerry Sandusky, was charged with sexually assaulting eight young, disadvantaged boys.
The point of the article I posted earlier today, about former Pennsylvania State Senator Vincent Fumo, was abuse of power. This sex abuse scandal is a variation of the same theme. Sandusky’s inappropriate behavior went on for years, probably because no one wanted to challenge a football dynasty.
According to the grand jury report:
• In 1998, Sandusky brought an 11-year-old boy into a Penn State locker room shower and behaved inappropriately. The boy’s mother reported it to Penn State University police. After a lengthy investigation, the Centre County District Attorney decided there would be no criminal charges.
• In 2000, a janitor saw Sandusky in the showers with an 11- to 13-year-old boy pinned against the wall, performing oral sex. He was distraught as he told his fellow janitors and his supervisor what he witnessed. But most of the janitors were new employees, and they were afraid that if they reported what had happened, they would lose their jobs.
• In 2002, a Penn State graduate assistant witnessed Sandusky having anal sex with a 10-year-old boy in the locker room showers. The graduate assistant told Joe Paterno. Paterno told his supervisor, Athletic Director Tim Curley. There were a few meetings, but no official investigation. In the end, all that happened was that Sandusky was told he could no longer bring boys to Penn State. Then, when the grand jury investigated, both Curley and the university’s Senior Vice President for Finance and Business Gary Schultz, downplayed the incident.
For more, read reporting in the Philadelphia Inquirer: