News

Report on Penn State abuse finds ‘inexplicable delays’

Report on Penn State abuse finds ‘inexplicable delays’

PENN STATE:Jerry Sandusky (C) leaves the Centre County Courthouse after his sentencing in his child sex abuse case in Bellefonte, Pennsylvania Oct. 9, 2012. Photo: Reuters/Pat Little

By Daniel Kelley

HARRISBURG Penn. (Reuters) – A highly anticipated review of the child sex abuse case against Jerry Sandusky released on Monday found delays in prosecuting the former Penn State football coach but no evidence of political interference by Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett during his time as attorney general.

Sandusky, a prominent assistant coach for Penn State, was convicted in 2012 of molesting 10 boys over 15 years and now is serving a prison sentence of 30 to 60 years.

The report, compiled by former federal prosecutor Geoffrey Moulton and released by the Pennsylvania attorney general’s office, said there were “inexplicable delays in bringing a serial child molester to justice.”

An assistant attorney general prepared charging documents based on grand jury testimony of a single victim against Sandusky as early as March 2010, more than a year and a half before he was arrested, the report said.

Her supervisors in the attorney general’s office overruled her, believing testimony of a lone victim would be “insufficient against a community icon like Sandusky” and that a failed prosecution would make it difficult to proceed if other victims came forward, it said.

They wanted investigators to find more victims, despite fears that a delay could allow Sandusky to create more victims, it said.

The report noted that the investigation was delayed as well by difficulty getting documents from The Second Mile, a charity for troubled youth that Sandusky ran and from which he recruited some victims, and from Penn State, which did not turn over a police report involving a 1998 child sex abuse incident.

Investigators say finding that report led to the discovery of four more victims.

Sandusky’s arrest rocked the world of big-time college football and led to accusations that Corbett, who was attorney general when the first victim was referred to his office in 2009, slowed the case to avoid alienating potential campaign donors.

Sandusky worked from 1969 through 1999 under legendary longtime Penn State football coach Joe Paterno, who was fired in the wake of the scandal and who died in January 2012.

Attorney General Kathleen Kane, a Democrat elected in 2012, has argued criminal charges should have been brought sooner, and that Corbett failed to protect children for more than two years.

In response, several prosecutors said the review reeked of politics.

“To us, career professionals who investigated and prosecuted this case, the report was clearly born of political opportunism and posturing,” the prosecutors wrote.

They added, however, that the report, despite its “unsavory origins,” was in part “palatable.”

Corbett, a Republican, has struggled with poor approval ratings and is seen as a highly vulnerable incumbent.

Penn State’s former president, former athletic director and former vice president face charges including endangering the welfare of children, obstruction of justice and criminal conspiracy.

Moulton served as special investigator into the 1993 federal raid of the Branch Davidian headquarters in Waco, Texas.

(Editing by Ellen Wulfhorst and Bill Trott)

Recent Headlines

in Trending, Viral Videos

TODAY’S MUST SEE: ‘Scaring’ with the ‘Stars’

Fresh
11-overlay3

Halloween is alive and well on the set of the hit ABC show "Dancing With the Stars."

in Sports, Viral Videos

Nike hype video welcomes LeBron back to Cleveland

14-overlay4

The video huddles the whole city as "The King" returns home.

in Entertainment, Viral Videos

WATCH: Ice Cube teaches Elmo a new word

11-overlay2

There was a time when parents would have freaked out to hear their kids were learning words from Ice Cube.

in Viral Videos

Daniel Radcliffe ‘raps’ the alphabet

Updated
17-overlay3

The "Harry Potter" star performs the tongue-twisting "Alphabet Aerobics" and it's hilarious.

in Music

Slipknot tops Billboard album chart, Taylor Swift eyes record debut

slipknot

Heavy metal rockers Slipknot took the lead on the weekly chart, a week ahead of Taylor Swift's projected year's biggest album opening.