Thursday, November 18, 2021

Free Jerry Sandusky!

By Ralph Cipriano

Ten years after an illegal grand jury leak set off the media firestorm known as the Penn State sex abuse scandal, the evidence of official misconduct in this case is so pervasive and egregious that Jerry Sandusky deserves to walk out of prison today as a free man.

Since 2017, Big Trial has reviewed thousands of pages of court transcripts and legal proceedings in the case, along with hundreds of pages of confidential documents that are still under a judge's seal.

Taken together, those records tell a clear story -- the case against Sandusky is fatally flawed from top to bottom. A decade later, records show, the actions of many of the principal actors in this case, including prosecutors, judges, and FBI Director Louis Freeh, who led the civil investigation at Penn State, are irredeemably tainted by misconduct, incompetence, unethical behavior, conflict of interest, collusion and/or corruption. 

In addition, psychologists in the case used scientifically discredited recovered memory therapy to elicit suspect testimony from many of the alleged victims, whose improbable and constantly evolving stories to this day have never been vetted by anyone. Finally, the defendants' own medical records cast doubt on whether Sandusky was physically capable of performing the acts he was accused of.

Based on the evidence that I will present here, there's no longer any reason for any sane person to believe in the findings of both the civil and the criminal investigations conducted at Penn State. A decade later, the prevailing story line in the Penn State sex scandal about the man who's supposed to be the most notorious pedophile in America amounts to an X-rated fractured fairy tale that, when viewed from multiple angles, makes no freaking sense. 

There's a looming shadow that's cast over the entire Penn State scandal, and that's the egregious conduct of an overzealous prosecutor on a rampage, former Deputy Attorney General Frank Fina, who was the lead prosecutor at Penn State.

Amelia Kittredge, the counsel for the state Supreme Court's disciplinary board who ran the investigation that resulted in Fina losing his license to practice law, memorably described Fina to the state's highest court as "someone who cannot or will not separate right from wrong."

A decade later, Fina's fingerprints are all over this travesty of a case, particularly when it comes to illegal grand jury leaks. But when we're talking about bad actors in the Sandusky case, Fina's got plenty of company. 

The tragedy of all this is if the state gets its wish, Sandusky, who at 77, still professes his innocence, may die in prison before the truth about the scandal behind the scandal at Penn State is finally known. 

Much of the material published below will be familiar to Big Trial readers, as it has been presented piecemeal over the past five years in some 60 blog posts published on this website.

The stories were written by myself as well as author Mark Pendergrast, who excerpted on several chapters from his 2017 book, The Most Hated Man In America; Jerry Sandusky and the Rush to Judgment.

It was ten years ago this month, on Nov. 4, 2011, that the premature leak of the pending grand jury indictment of Sandusky to reporter Sara Ganim set off the media firestorm that would railroad Sandusky into spending what amounts to a life sentence in jail.

Just five days after that leak, without doing any fact-finding, Penn State's panicked board of trustees hastily  fired Joe Paterno, the winningest football coach in America, as well as longtime Penn State President Graham Spanier. 

With the tenth anniversary of the Penn State case upon us, rather than examine its own malpractice and negligence, the news media has chosen to regurgitate a completely discredited story line that's built around a big lie. 

To counter the prevailing narrative, I've decided to publish in one spot large chunks of the evidence that clearly shows Sandusky was railroaded.

As outlined below, the level of official misconduct in this case is so extreme that it rises to the level of egregious. That's the term the state Supreme Court used in 1992 when it freed former Lower Merion High School Principal Jay Smith from prison, where he had been on death row for six years, after his conviction for the murders of English teacher Susan Reinert and her two children, whose bodies were never discovered.

In the Jay Smith case, the state Supreme Court found that prosecutors in the state attorney general's office committed egregious misconduct when they hid exculpatory evidence that would have benefitted the defendant. The hidden evidence included two grains of sand found between the toes on Reinert's body that indicated she may have died at the Jersey Shore, as opposed to the the prosecution's theory of the case, which was that Smith had killed Reinert in his basement.

In freeing Smith, the state Supreme Court barred a retrial on the grounds that it would amount to unconstitutional double jeopardy. 

In the Sandusky case, the state attorney general's office outdid its previous standards for corruption by knowingly writing a false and inflammatory grand jury presentment, deliberately leaking that false presentment to the media, and then basically manufacturing the trial testimony that was used to convict Sandusky. To finish the job, the judges in this case trampled on Sandusky's constitutional rights at every turn, while turning a blind eye to overwhelming evidence of official misconduct. 

Stated simply, the Sandusky case is a cluster f--k from start to finish that can't be undone. 

The Rape In The Showers

Let's start at the beginning, with the headline charge in the grand jury presentment that has permanently convicted Sandusky in the minds of an entire nation, as well as the jury pool in Centre County. The headline charge that was also responsible for the firing of Paterno and Spanier.

“Remember that little boy in the shower,” then-Gov. Tom Corbett told the university’s board of trustees on Nov. 9, 2011, just before they decided, in a mad rush to judgment, to fire Paterno and Spanier without even taking a formal vote. 

According to that grand jury presentment, a decade earlier, at 9:30 p.m. on March 1, 2002, a then-28-year-old Penn State graduate assistant walked into the locker room at the Lasch Football Building on the University Park Campus.

[The prosecutors subsequently claimed they had gotten the date of the shower story wrong, and moved the date of that alleged incident back 13 months to Feb. 9, 2001.]

The graduate assistant, subsequently identified as assistant Penn State football coach Mike McQueary, heard "rhythmic slapping sounds" emanating from the showers, sounds that he "believed" to be evidence of "sexual activity." 

According to the grand jury presentment, McQueary looked into the showers and saw "a naked boy, Victim 2, whose age he estimated to be ten years old, with his hands up against the wall, being subjected to anal intercourse by a naked Sandusky."

According to the grand jury presentment, the "distraught" graduate assistant called his father for advice, and then he left he Lasch Building and went straight home.

"The next morning," according to the grand jury presentment, McQueary "went to [Coach Joe] Paterno's home, where he reported what he had seen."

The rape in the showers, as well as the implication that McQueary promptly told Paterno about "what he had seen" -- as in that rape in the showers -- are both works of fiction written by overzealous prosecutors in the state attorney general's office.

How do we know this? From the words of the sole witness himself, in emails first disclosed by blogger Ray Blehar. 

On Nov. 10, 2011, six days after the grand jury presentment was leaked, McQueary emailed deputy Attorney General Jonelle Eshbach to tell her that the grand jury report the AG had just published was factually incorrect. 

"I feel my words are slightly twisted and not totally portrayed correctly in the presentment," McQueary wrote. "I cannot say 1000 percent sure that it was sodomy. I did not see insertion. It was a sexual act and or way over the line in my opinion whatever it was."

In a second email that day to Eshbach, McQueary complained about "being misrepresented" in the media. To which Eshbach replied, "I know that a lot of this stuff is incorrect and it is hard not to respond. But you can't."

During a defamation suit that McQueary subsequently filed against Penn State, Eshbach was sworn in as a witness and asked to explain what she meant by telling McQueary not to talk.

"My advice to Mr. McQueary not to make a statement was based on the strengthening of my -- and saving of my case," Eshbach testified. "I did not want him [McQueary] making statements to the press at that time that could at some time be used against him in cross-examination. He [McQueary] was perfectly free to make a statement, but I asked him not to."

Less than a month after the grand jury presentment, Paterno issued a statement disclosing that when he went before the grand jury, he testified, "It was obvious that the witness [McQueary] was distraught over what he saw, but he at no time related to me the very specific actions contained in the Grand Jury report."

To further confirm this, on Dec. 16, 2011, McQueary testified under cross-examination that "I have never used the word anal or rape in this -- since day one." 

Besides Paterno, McQueary told his story about "whatever it was" that he had allegedly witnessed within hours of the alleged incident in the Penn State showers to his father, John McQueary, and his father's friend, Dr. Jonathan Dranov, who, as a doctor, was a mandated reporter when it comes to allegations of sex abuse. 

Approximately 10 days later, McQueary told Penn State Athletic Director Tim Curley and senior Vice President for finance and business Gary Schultz about what he had allegedly seen in the showers.

All five men -- Paterno, McQueary's father, Dr. Dranov, Curley and Schutz -- have testified under oath that Mike McQueary never told them that he witnessed anything sexual going on in the showers. Instead, Paterno, Curley and Schultz characterized what McQueary told them about as "horseplay."

On Nov. 23, 2010, recounting what was then a nearly decade-old incident in the showers, McQueary wrote out a statement to police that said whatever he witnessed took place during a brief time period that lasted between 30 and 45 seconds. 

During that time, McQueary wrote to the cops, he glanced into a mirror once, which gave him a reflected view of the showers, and then he glanced directly into the showers.

McQueary told a grand jury in 2010 that the two “glances” he took each lasted “maybe one or two seconds.”

But the story McQueary told kept changing. 

On Nov. 8, 2011, after the grand jury presentment became public, McQueary emailed a friend and claimed that instead of leaving the locker room and doing nothing to stop an alleged rape of a child in progress, "I did stop it, not physically, but made sure it was stopped when I left that locker room."

In that email that was subsequently published in Thee Morning Call of Allentown, PA, on Nov. 15, 2011, McQueary also claimed that he told the police about the rape in the showers. But the next day, representatives from both the Penn State campus police and the State College police publicly stated that they had no record of McQueary ever reporting any sex crime to them. 

In subsequent retellings of the shower story, McQueary claimed that when he left the locker room, he slammed his locker door, which he said, made Sandusky look up and stop the abuse. McQueary also claimed that as he was leaving the shower room, he took another glance in the showers a second time, to make sure that Sandusky and the boy remained apart.

At the Sandusky trial in 2012, McQueary testified that when he first glanced in the showers eleven years earlier, this time he said that glance lasted between one and five seconds, and that he saw Sandusky standing behind a boy whose hands were against the shower wall. 

On the witness stand, McQueary claimed that he now recalled a "very slow, slow, subtle movement" of Sandusky's crotch against the boy's buttocks. 

The identity of the victim, the boy in the showers, Deputy Attorney General Joe McGettigan told the jury at the Sandusky trial, was "known only to God." But jurors didn't buy that story, and despite convicting Sandusky on 45 other counts, they acquitted Sandusky on the charge of abusing the unknown boy in the showers.

[According to author Mark Pendergrast, McGettigan was lying when he said they didn't know the identity of the boy in the showers. He's a former Marine named Allan Myers, who was 14, and not 10 at the time of the alleged shower incident. Myers initially told the state police and a private investigator that Sandusky was a father figure and mentor who had never abused him, and that they were horsing around that day in the shower, snapping some towels, when McQueary walked in. 

That was before Myers decided to drastically change his story and cash in, to the tune of a $6.9 million civil settlement. During Sandusky's bid for a new trial, Myers was sworn in as a witness in 2016 and asked which story he told was the truth. He responded by saying he couldn't remember 34 times.]  

The Previously Undisclosed Federal Investigation At Penn State 

The Penn State sex scandal was the subject of a criminal investigation by the state attorney general's office, and a supposedly independent civil investigation conducted at the cost of $8 million by former FBI Director Louis Freeh.

The investigation conducted by the state attorney general's office resulted in the indictment of Sandusky for the alleged rape of the boy in the showers, as well as for allegedly abusing seven other minors. 

On June 22, 2012, a Centre County jury found Sandusky guilty of 45 out of 48 counts of sex abuse, and sentenced him to 30 to 60 years in jail. 

The state attorney general's office also initially charged Spanier, Curley and Schultz with failing to report allegations of child abuse to authorities, along with allegedly committing perjury during grand jury testimony. 

The Freeh Report concluded that there was an official cover up of Sandusky's sex crimes at Penn State. And that during that cover up, the Freeh Report claimed, Spanier, Curley and Schultz had displayed a "total and consistent disregard" for the safety and welfare of Sandusky's alleged victims, as well as a "striking lack of empathy."

In publishing their 267-page report, the authors of the Freeh Report claimed they operated "with total independence," and that "no party interfered with, or attempted to influence the findings in this report."

The media has dutifully reported on the two investigations done by the state attorney general's office, and former FBI Director Freeh, as well as their findings about a rape in the showers, followed by an official cover-up on the part of Penn State's top officials.

But there has been a total news blackout in the mainstream media on the third investigation done at Penn State. It was done by the federal government in 2012, which resulted in a 110-page report that initially was stamped confidential, but was finally declassified in 2017.

The federal investigation was conducted by former NCIS Special Agent and veteran cold case investigator John Snedden, then on assignment for the U.S. Federal Investigative Services.

Against the backdrop of the Penn State sex abuse scandal, Snedden's job was to determine whether former Penn State President Spanier deserved to have a high-level national security clearance renewed amid allegations that he had orchestrated an official cover-up of Jerry Sandusky's sex crimes.

With national security at stake, Snedden conducted a five-month investigation on the Penn State campus in 2012. And what did he find?

That the rape in the showers story told by McQueary made no sense, and that McQueary, who told so many different versions of that story -- according to author Mark Pendergrast, a total of five different accounts -- wasn't a credible witness. 

Snedden also concluded that there was no cover up at Penn State, because there was no sex crime in the showers to cover up. It was the exact opposite of the conclusions reached by the state attorney general's office, and the Freeh Report.

As a result, the feds cleared Spanier, and renewed his high level security clearance. 

Why didn't Snedden buy the rape in the showers story?

Back in 2001, Snedden told Big Trial, Mike McQueary was a 26-year-old, 6-foot-5, 240-pound  former college quarterback used to running away from 350-pound defensive linemen. If McQueary actually saw Jerry Sandusky raping a young boy in the shower, Snedden said, he probably would have done something about it.

"I think your moral compass would cause you to act and not just flee," Snedden said.

If McQueary really thought he was witnessing a sexual assault on a child, Snedden said, wouldn't he have gotten between the victim and a "wet, defenseless naked 57-year-old guy in the shower?"

Or, if McQueary decided he wasn't going to physically intervene, Snedden said, instead of going home and doing nothing about a child rape in progress, why didn't he call the cops from the Lasch Building? 

As Snedden says, the story makes no sense. It was also egregious  prosecutorial misconduct for the state attorney general's office to fictionalize and sensationalize such a flimsy, decade-old story, and then hang an entire grand jury presentment on it.

Evidence of Corruption, Collusion & Illegal Grand Jury Leaks 

While the Freeh Group investigation claimed to operate with "total independence," there's a  confidential record that meticulously documents ample evidence of routine collusion between the criminal investigation of Penn State conducted by the state attorney general's office, and the supposedly independent investigation conducted by the Freeh Group.

And that evidence comes from a seemingly unimpeachable source, former FBI Special Agent Kathleen McChesney, who was credited with starting the investigation that led to the capture of serial killer Ted Bundy.

In "Conversations with a Killer: The Ted Bundy Tapes," McChesney revealed on camera how the federal investigation of the serial killer got started. A woman called and said, "I'm concerned about my boyfriend -- his name is Ted Bundy."

The girlfriend proceeded to detail Bundy's suspicious behavior that included following women around at night, hiding a knife in his car and keeping a bag of women's underwear in his apartment.

McChesney, who was on the task force that ultimately arrested Bundy, rose to become the only female FBI agent appointed to be the bureau's executive assistant director. Her credibility was such that in 2002, in the wake of the widespread sex abuse scandal involving the Catholic clergy, the U.S. Conference of Bishops hired McChesney to establish and lead its Office of Child and Youth Protection. 

McChesney is also the author of a 2011 book, "Pick Up Your Own Brass: Leadership the FBI Way."

But in the Sandusky case, the decorated former FBI special agent is now known for another book she wrote -- an unpublished, confidential 79-page diary written in 2011 and 2012, back when McChesney was a private investigator working for her old boss, former FBI Director Freeh, while investigating Penn State. 

In her diary, McChesney records multiple contemporaneous instances of then Deputy Attorney General Frank Fina, the lead prosecutor in the Penn State case, leaking grand jury secrets to the Freeh Group. 

It's clear from the McChesney diary that multiple grand jury documents were also regularly leaked to the Freeh Group, as was a 1998 police report on an earlier alleged shower incident that was investigated and found to be unfounded, resulting in a report that was supposed to have been expunged in 1999.

While the Freeh Group claimed in their report that they operated with "total independence" and "no party interfered with, or attempted to influence the findings in this report," the McChesney diary tells a different story. 

Namely, that in conducting their supposedly independent investigation, the Freeh Group was regularly colluding with and working seemingly under the direction of the state attorney general's office, and particularly under the direction of deputy Attorney General Frank Fina.

According to McChesney, members of the Freeh Group "don't want to interfere with their investigations," and that she and her colleagues were being "extremely cautious & running certain interviews by them." 

McChesney wrote that the Freeh Group even "asked Fina to authorize some interviews." And that the A.G.'s office "asked us to stay away from some people, ex janitors, but can interview" people from the Second Mile, Sandusky's charity for disadvantaged youths. 

According to McChesney, Fina was actively involved in directing the Freeh Group's investigation, to the point of saying if and when they could interview certain witnesses. 

For example, McChesney recorded that the Freeh Group was going to notify Fina that they wanted to interview Ronald Schreffler, an investigator for Penn State Police who probed the earlier 1998 shower incident involving Sandusky and another boy that turned out to be unfounded; he also wrote the police report that was supposed to be expunged.

After he was notified, McChesney wrote, "Fina approved interview with Schreffler."

According to the McChesney diary, Fina also routinely kept the Freeh Group up to date on what was going on with the grand jury investigation, telling Freeh's investigators secrets that the defendants and their lawyers weren't privy to.

For example, the night before former Penn State President Spanier, Curley and Schultz were going to be arrested, Gregory Paw, another Freeh investigator, sent an email to his colleagues at the Freeh Group, advising them of the imminent arrest.

The subject of Paw's email: "CLOSE HOLD -- Important."

"PLEASE HOLD VERY CLOSE," Paw wrote his colleagues at the Freeh Group. "[Deputy Attorney General Frank] Fina called tonight to tell me that Spanier is to be arrested tomorrow, and Curley and Schultz re-arrested, on charges of obstruction of justice and related charges . . . Spanier does not know this information yet, and his lawyers will be advised about an hour before the charges are announced tomorrow."

When I asked Freeh, through a spokesperson, whether he as a private citizen during the Penn State investigation, was authorized to have access to grand jury secrets, Freeh declined comment. 

Other emails contained in documents under seal show that while investigating Penn State, Freeh may have had a conflict of interest. According to the emails, Freeh, whose investigators had telephone conferences with every Friday with NCAA officials, saw the Penn State investigation as a way to land the NCAA as a permanent client.

On July 7, 2012, a week before the release of the Freeh Report on Penn State, Omar McNeill, a senior investigator for Freeh, wrote to Freeh. "This has opened up an opportunity to have the dialogue with [NCAA President Mark] Emmert about possibly being the go to internal investigator for the NCAA. It appears we have Emmert's attention now."

In response, Freeh wrote back, "Let's try to meet with him and make a deal -- a very good cost contract to be the NCAA's 'go to investigators' -- we can even craft a big discounted rate given the unique importance of such a client. Most likely he will agree to a meeting -- if he does not ask for one first."

It took seven years but Freeh's efforts finally paid off. In August, 2019, the NCAA hired five employees of the Freeh Group to staff its new Complex Case Unit.

The McChesney diary was the basis for a motion for a new trial filed with the state Superior Court in 2020 by Sandusky's appeal lawyers. In their motion for a new trial, Sandusky's lawyers requested an evidentiary hearing where McChesney would have been summoned to testify under subpoena and asked to authenticate the diary.

But a year later, on May 13, 2021, the state Superior Court denied that motion, ruling that Sandusky's lawyers did not file their appeal in a timely fashion. 

Instead, the state Superior Court blasted Sandusky's appeal lawyers, saying that they "dithered for one-half a year" before bringing the newly discovered evidence to the court's attention.

Evidence of Jury Tampering

The Freeh Group's investigation at Penn State involved interviewing hundreds of people, including a Penn State faculty member before she was chosen as a juror in the Sandusky case.

And when it came time for defense lawyers to question the juror, she misrepresented what she had told the Freeh Group.

The juror was identified by Freeh's investigators as Laura Pauley, a professor of mechanical engineering at Penn State, who did not respond to a request for comment. During jury selection on June 6, 2012, Pauley was asked by Joseph Amendola, Sandusky's trial lawyer, what she told Freeh's investigators. 

"It was focused more on how the board of trustees interacts with the president," Pauley told Amendola, as well as "how faculty are interacting with the president and the board of trustees . . ."

But an April 19, 2011 confidential summary of that interview shows that the juror had already made up her mind about the guilt of Sandusky, by reading her local newspaper. According to the report of the interview, Pauley had also already decided that Penn State's top administrators were guilty of a cover up. 

In her interview with Freeh's investigators, Pauley stated that she was "an avid reader of the Centre Daily Times" and that she believed that the leadership at Penn State just "kicks the issue down the road."

"The PSU culture can best be described as people who do not want to resolve issues and want to avoid confrontation," she told Freeh's investigators.

Pauley, a tenured professor who served on the Faculty Advisory Committee for three years, told Freeh's investigators that Penn State President Graham Spanier was "very controlling," and that "she feels that [former Penn State Athletic Director Tim] Curley and [former Penn State vice president Gary] Schultz are responsible for the scandal."

"She stated that she senses Curley and Schultz treated it [the scandal] the 'Penn State' way and were just moving on and hoping it would fade away."

While Pauley was being questioned by Amendola, Sandusky's appeal lawyers wrote, "at no time during this colloquy, or any other time, did the prosecution disclose that it was working in collaboration with the Freeh Group which interviewed the witness." 

Had Amendola known what Pauley told Freeh's investigators, he would have sought to have her stricken from the jury. He would have also asked the judge to find out whether any other jurors had met with Freeh's investigators.

At Sandusky's trial, w
hile Amendola was questioning Pauley about what she told Freeh's investigators, Deputy Attorney Frank Fina sat silently at the prosecution table and said nothing.

Since the McChesney's diary documents how the Freeh Group routinely kept the attorney general's office abreast of the Freeh investigation, it's possible that Fina knew all about the Freeh Group's interview with Pauley.

It's also possible that Fina may have even been given his own copy of that interview with the juror.

The Corruption Of Frank Fina

On Feb. 19, 2020, the state Supreme Court of Pennsylvania voted to suspend for a year and a day the law license of former deputy attorney general Frank Fina, the lead prosecutor in the Penn State case, for his "reprehensible" and "inexcusable" misconduct during the grand jury investigation of three Penn State officials that he accused of orchestrating a cover up.

Fina, the disciplinary board found, was guilty of purposely "misleading" a grand jury judge into thinking that Fina wasn't going to press Cynthia Baldwin, Penn State's former counsel, into breaking the attorney-client privilege behind closed doors and betraying three top Penn State officials who were her former clients -- Spanier, Curley and Schultz.

Fina got Baldwin to cooperate by threatening her with an indictment for obstruction of justice. So Baldwin went into the grand jury and testified against her clients, without even notifying them of her betrayal. 

After deliberately misleading the judge back in October 2012, Fina then "proceeded to question [Baldwin] extensively about the very subjects he represented to Judge [Barry] Feudale he would avoid," the disciplinary board concluded. 

"These actions are reprehensible" and "inexcusable," the disciplinary board wrote.

Even worse, the disciplinary board found that Fina's alleged defense of his behavior before the board was "without substance." What Fina did, the disciplinary board said, was to tear down all the safeguards built into the criminal justice system by turning defense attorney Baldwin "into a witness for the prosecution against her clients."

"Unlike other lawyers, the prosecutor is more than a zealous advocate for a client," the state Supreme Court wrote. "The prosecutor bears as well the high and non-delegable duty of ensuring a fair process for the defendant and of comporting himself or herself always in a manner consistent with a position of public trust."

"To state it plain, instead of Baldwin serving as a shield for her former clients, her testimony was elicited and used by Fina as a sword against them, to devastating effect," the court wrote. In addition, when he was brought up on charges of misconduct, the disciplinary board concluded, Fina "failed to acknowledge he had a special responsibility to ensure justice and utterly failed to acknowledge the ramifications of his conduct." 

The board found that "deflecting responsibility and displaying a lack of sincere remorse constitute aggravating factors."

Clearly, Fina was a man who would stop at nothing to accomplish his goals. Even if it meant breaking the law.

There was more fall-out from Fina's actions.

In 2013, then state Attorney General Katharine Kane ousted Judge Feudale from his duties as supervising grand jury judge in Harrisburg, citing his close relationship with Fina and lack of objectivity. 

On Feb. 21, 2020, the state Supreme Court publicly censured Baldwin, a former state Supreme Court justice herself, for her "unfathomable" and "incompetent" actions in betraying her own clients. 

In censuring Baldwin, the court noted her "lack of remorse for her actions," saying she "cast blame for her problems on everyone involved," but never herself.

The Corruption Of the Trial Judge In The Sandusky Case

The trial of Sandusky was presided over by the Honorable John Cleland, who oversaw a rush to judgment that resulted in Sandusky going from indictment to conviction at trial in just seven months.

How did the judge pull that off? By trampling on Sandusky's constitutional rights.

Before the trial started, Sandusky's defense lawyers tried to get the trial postponed so they could wade through 12,000 pages of grand jury transcripts he had just received only 10 days before the start of trial.

Amendola, Sanduksy's trial lawyer, begged for a continuance, telling the judge that he needed time to read the files and find out what Sandusky's accusers were saying about him; he also needed time to subpoena witnesses.

"We can't prepare . . . I felt like Custer at Little Bighorn for God's sake," Amendola testified during an appeals hearing. But Judge Cleland turned him down. 

[Besides being unprepared, Joe Amendola, Sandusky's trial lawyer, was painfully inept, as detailed on this blog by author Mark Pendergrast.]

Jerry Sandusky had a constitutional right to a fair trial. But in order to save Penn State football, which was being threatened with the death penalty by the NCAA, Sandusky had to be convicted and sitting in jail before the start of the 2012 college football season to wrap up the Penn State scandal in a nice, neat bow.

Putting Sandusky in jail for life fit right into the deal that PSU had struck with the NCAA, which was to voluntarily admit guilt and take their lumps, which included a $60 million fine. But the payoff for Penn State was that the Nittany Lions would escape the death penalty that the NCAA had threatened to impose on the football program in Happy Valley.

Jerry Sandusky also had a constitutional right to confront his accusers, but Judge Cleland took care of that as well.

The night before the preliminary hearing in the case, the only pretrial opportunity where Sandusky's lawyers would have had the right to confront his accusers -- the eight young men who claimed that Sandusky had abused them -- Judge Cleland convened an unusual off-the-record meeting of prosecutors, a magistrate, and defense lawyers at the Hilton Garden Inn at State College.

At the meeting, with prosecutors nodding in agreement, the judge talked Amendola into waiving the preliminary hearing so that Sandusky could remain out on bail for his trial. On their end of the deal, the state attorney general's office, which had previously requested bail of $1 million for Sandusky, agreed to lower that amount to $250,000. 

The A.G. had also had threatened to file more charges against Sandusky, but according to the deal worked out by the judge during the off-the-record session at the Hilton Garden Inn, no more charges would be forthcoming.

So Amendola caved and took the deal. The grand result of Sandusky's lawyers waiving the preliminary hearing was that the Pennsylvania railroad that Sandusky was riding on would stay on schedule.

During the appeal process, after Judge Cleland's actions were disclosed regarding the Hilton Garden Inn conference, the judge had to turn over notes that he had taken during the off-the-record session. Cleland then voluntarily recused himself from continuing to preside over the appeals in the Sandusky case.

While the Sandusky case was headed to trial at breakneck speed, some people in the know were aware that the Honorable Judge Cleland wasn't going to budge on the scheduled trial date.

In the McChesney diary, on May 10, 2012, the former FBI agent noted in a conference call with Gregory Paw and Omar McNeil, two of Freeh's investigators, that Paw is going to talk to Fina, and that the "judge [is] holding firm on date of trial."

In an affidavit, Amendola, Sandusky's trial lawyer, stated that McChesney didn't get that information from him.

"An obvious question arises as to whether or not the trial judge was communicating with a member of the Freeh Group, attorneys for the attorney general's office, or anyone else concerning the trial date," Sandusky's appeal lawyers wrote.

In their motion for a new trial, Sandusky's lawyers sought to question Judge Cleland at an evidentiary hearing "to determine whether, and to what extent, collusion between the office of the attorney general, the Freeh investigation and the NCAA had an impact on the trial."

But the court denied that appeal.

Gullible Judges Deny A New Trial For Sandusky 

During the appeals of Sandusky's conviction, his lawyers accused deputy attorney generals Fina and Eshbach of breaking state law by repeatedly leaking grand jury secrets. 

But on Oct. 18, 2017, Jefferson County Presiding Judge John Henry Foradora issued a 59-page opinion where he cleared Fina and Eshbach of leaking, while denying Sandusky a new trial sought under the Post Conviction Relief Act.

In his opinion, Judge Foradora concluded that Fina and Eshbach weren't the leakers who were feeding reporter Sara Ganim intel about the impending grand jury presentment. 

Why? Because Fina said so.

The judge bought Fina's alibi that he and Eshbach had supposedly set an "internal trap" to find the real leakers. But apparently the two prosecutors were about as successful as O.J. Simpson was in his hunt for the real killers.

Fina had asked his old buddy, Judge Barry Feudale, the supervising judge of the grand jury, to investigate the leak, Judge Foradora wrote. So, Judge Foradora decided, after hearing testimony from Fina, that it couldn't be Fina or Eshbach who were doing the leaking at the A.G.'s office.

At the PCRA hearing, "the testimony, then did not support the idea that the prosecution leaked grand jury information for any reason, let alone for the purpose of generating more victims," the judge wrote. 

"If anything it supports the opposite conclusion, because while someone might be skeptical about the validity of Eshbach and Fina's internal 'trap'" to catch the real leakers, the judge wrote. "It is a fact of human nature that one engaged in or aware of misconduct he does not wish to have exposed does not ask an outside source to investigate it."

Unless the judge in question is an old pal. As in wink, wink.

One of the allegations of a leak raised by Sandusky's lawyers involved an incident related by the prosecution's official whistle blower in the Sandusky case, Mike McQueary.

At the 2017 trial of former PSU President Graham Spanier, McQueary was asked by a prosecutor how he found out that Sandusky was going to be arrested.

During the bye week of the 2011 Penn State football season, McQueary said, "I was on my way to Boston for recruiting and I was going from the F terminal over to the B terminals over in Philadelphia Airport." 

That's when "the AGs called," McQueary said, referring specifically to Eshbach. According to McQueary, Eshbach told him "We're going to arrest folks and we are going to leak it out."

But rather than believe McQueary, Judge Foradora decided to trust Fina and Eshbach. 

In denying Sandusky a new trial, Judge Foradora foolishly staked his entire 59-page opinion on the credibility and integrity of Frank Fina, which is now in tatters.

On Feb. 5, 2019, the state Superior Court, in a 70-page written by another gullible judge, the Honorable Judge Carolyn Nichols compounded this lunacy by denying Sandusky's appeal of Judge Foradora's opinion not to grant a new trial.

Once again, Judge Nichols and another court bought Fina and Eschbach's explanation that they had set an "internal trap" to find the real leakers, and didn't do any leaking themselves.

Recovered Memory Therapy

According to Mark Pendergrast, therapists in the Sandusky case used scientifically-discredited recovered memory therapy on six of Sandusky's eight accusers at trial, and on several other alleged victims who wound up getting civil settlements.

Pendergrast focused on the work of therapist Mike Gillum, who for three years, in weekly and sometimes daily skull sessions, basically brainwashed Aaron Fisher, Victim No. 1, into recalling memories of abuse, after he had originally denied he had been abused. 

In a book Gillum co-wrote with Fisher, Silent No More, the therapist, who was convinced from the get-go that Sandusky was a serial abuser, stated that he sought to “peel back the layers of the onion” of Fisher's brain to recover memories of abuse that Gillum already knew were there.

During these weekly and sometimes daily sessions, Fisher didn't have to say anything.  According to Silent No More, Gillum would guess what happened and Fisher only had to nod his head or say Yes. 

“I was very blunt with him when I asked questions but gave him the ability to answer with a yes or a no, that relieved him of a lot of burden,” Gillum wrote. In the same book, Aaron Fisher recalled: “Mike just kept saying that Jerry was the exact profile of a predator. When it finally sank in, I felt angry.”

The grand result of Gillum's work --- Fisher cashed in for $7.5 million. 

Another alleged victim who initially denied he had been abused, Dustin Struble, Victim No. 7, dramatically changed his story after he also underwent recovered memory therapy. 

Like many of the other alleged victims in this case, Struble's story kept evolving. Struble told the grand jury that Sandusky had never touched his privates or touched him in the shower, which Struble said he and Sandusky shared with other coaches and players. 

But at Sandusky's trial, Struble changed his story to say that Sandusky put his hands down the boy's pants when they were riding in Sandusky's car. And this time when he told the story about showering with Sandusky, Struble claimed that Sandusky was alone with him in the shower. And that Sandusky grabbed the boy and pushed his own naked front against the boy's backside, then he touched the boy's nipples and blew on his stomach. 

When asked why his account had changed, Struble testified, "That doorway that I had closed has since been reopening more.  More things have been coming back and things have changed since that grand jury testimony.  Through counseling and different things, I can remember a lot more detail that I had pushed aside than I did at that point."

Struble's new story won him a civil settlement of $3,250,000.

A prominent critic of recovered memory therapy is Dr. Elizabeth Loftus, one of the world’s foremost experts on the malleability of human memory. Loftus, who testified at a hearing on behalf of Sandusky’s unsuccessful bid for a new trial, has given lectures on how memory works to the Secret Service and FBI; she also has a contract to work for the CIA

On May 11, 2017, testifying by phone, Loftus told Judge Foradora, “There is no credible scientific support for this idea of massive repression." 

Nor is there any credible support, she added, for the idea that “you need psychotherapy to dig it out, and you can reliably recover these memories . . . in order to heal yourself.”

In many jurisdictions, Loftus told the judge, cases involving repressed memories have been thrown out of court. 

Human memory “doesn’t work like a recording device” that can simply be played back at a later date, Loftus told the judge. Memories evolve over time and can be distorted or contaminated with suggestive and leading questioning. Her experiments have also shown that people can be talked into believing things that aren’t true. 

“You can plant entirely false memories in the minds of people for events that never happened,” she explained to the judge. And once those false memories are planted, she said, people will relate those memories as if they were true, “complete with high levels of detail and emotion.”

But at the Sandusky trial, repressed memories were consistently presented as fact. Prosecutor Joseph McGettigan told the jury before calling his witnesses that he would have to “press these young men for the details of their victimization,” because “they don’t want to remember.” That’s why the investigation was slow,” McGettigan told the jury, because “the doors of people’s minds” were closed. 

After a jury found Sandusky guilty, then Pennsylvania Attorney General Linda Kelly held a press conference outside the courthouse where she said of the alleged victims, “It was incredibly difficult for some of them to unearth long-buried memories of the shocking abuse they suffered at the hands of this defendant.”

During the appeal hearing over Sandusky's conviction, memory expert Loftus told Judge Foradora, “It seems pretty evident that there were drastic changes in the testimony of some of the [Sandusky] accusers.” 

One reason for those changes, she testified, was the “highly suggestive” way police and psychotherapists interviewed them. 

But rather than listen to Loftus, and the science, Judge Foradora chose to believe the recovered memories of the victims, which was the basis for the state attorney general's X-rated fractured fairy tale.

Victims' Stories Totally Unvetted

At Penn State, the university paid out $118 million to 36 alleged victims without investigating anything.

The average cost of the settlements was $3.3 million, more than double the average settlements paid out by the Catholic Church in abuse cases in Los Angeles and San Diego. 

In 2013, the extravagant payouts prompted the university’s insurance carrier, the Pennsylvania Manufacturers Association Insurance Company [PMA], to sue Penn State and the various “John Doe” claimants. The lawsuit ended three years later in a confidential settlement that lawyers in the case told Big Trial they were prohibited from discussing.

One of those lawyers is Eric Anderson of Pittsburgh, an expert witness who testified on behalf of the insurance carrier. 

“It appears as though Penn State made little effort, if any, to verify the credibility of the claims of the individuals,” Anderson wrote on October 5, 2015. In his report, Anderson decried “the absence of documentation” in the claims, saying in many cases there was “no signed affidavit, statement or other means of personal verification of the information which I reviewed."

“I do not know why so many of the cases were settled for such high sums of money,” Anderson wrote. 

In paying out the $118 million, the university did not undertake any of the usual methods to vet the stories of the accusers, such as having them questioned by private investigators, deposed by lawyers, personally examined by forensic psychiatrists, or subjected to polygraph tests.

Instead, the university just wrote checks. 

How The Alleged Victims Were Recruited

On May 1, 2009, deputy state attorney general Eshbach wrote a formal request to initiate a grand jury probe of Sandusky. Nineteen months later, the state attorney general's investigation of Sandusky the alleged serial pedophile, had produced only one alleged victim, the brainwashed Aaron Fisher.

To make matters worse, the first grand jury that heard Fisher testify didn't believe him, so they issued no indictment. 

But in November 2010, the A.G. got a tip about the shower incident that Mike McQueary had supposedly witnessed a decade earlier, a breakthrough that suddenly energized the Sandusky investigation.

On March 10, 2011, the state attorney general convened a second grand jury. They were aided by reporter Sara Ganim, who on March 31, 2011, wrote the first story about the secret grand jury probe of Sandusky that revealed for the first time the allegation that Sandusky was a serial sexual abuser of children.

The Ganim story basically functioned as a want add for the A.G.'s office to recruit more sex abuse victims.

The state police and the attorney general's office promptly created a seven-member joint task force and sent them out knocking on the doors of hundreds of young men who were alums of Sandusky’s Second Mile charity for disadvantaged youths, hunting for alleged victims. 

But the joint task force didn't have much success.

As one frustrated investigator emailed on June 3, 2011, as recounted by author Mark Pendergrast in his book, “We have recently been interviewing kids who don’t believe the allegations as published and believe Sandusky is a great role model for them and others to emulate.”

On Jan. 4, 2012, Anthony Sassano, a narcotics agent from the state attorney general's office who led the Sandusky investigation, testified that the special task force interviewed 250 men who were former members of the Second Mile charity, but found only one man who claimed to be a victim of abuse.

Ask yourself a simple question. If Jerry Sandusky was allegedly the most notorious pedophile in America who's been on rampage in a small town of 42,000 for nearly four decades, why does the state have to create a special joint task force to go out knocking on doors, and hunting down victims?

Shouldn't they be lined up around the block?

But then the grand jury presentment hit the media. On Nov. 10, 2011, Business Insider ran a story predicting that Penn State wound wind up paying Sandusky's accusers a total of $100 million. 

Suddenly, every plaintiff’s lawyer in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania had been alerted about a possible jackpot at Penn State. All they had to do to hit the lottery was to round up some guys who were willing to claim they were abused.

In seeking a lottery payoff, these alleged victims wouldn't even have to give up their real names. The media, for sure, could be counted on to keep their identities secret. While they were vilifying and destroying Jerry Sandusky's name and reputation every day.

After Sandusky was convicted, the floodgates opened, and 41 men filed civil claims for damages. Thirty-six of them would eventually get paid.

And it didn't require any heavy lifting.

Penn State had hired Kenneth Feinberg, dubbed “The Master of Disaster,” to oversee the settlement process with victims. Feinberg specialized in a global approach to settlements, rather than duke it out in court with one individual claim after another.

At Penn State, Feinberg prepared a form for alleged victims that merely required their lawyers to make their allegations, as part of what was billed as a “claims resolution process."

The claims as submitted in more than 120 pages of confidential records that the press or public has never seen, are entirely devoid of evidence. 

None of the initial claims were authenticated by signed affidavits, there were no reports of forensic evidence or witness testimony, or corroboration of any kind. Except when a few of the victims who were pals got each other to vouch for their stories.

The stories of the alleged victims, which were often improbable, and featured constantly changing details, remain completely unvetted to this day.

Jack Rossiter, a former FBI agent of 30 years, investigated more than 150 cases of alleged sex abuse as a private detective employed by the Catholic Archdiocese of Philadelphia between 2003 and 2007. 

As far as the Penn State case was concerned, Rossiter told Big Trial he was surprised to hear that apparently not one of the 36 alleged victims ever told anyone about the attacks when they allegedly occurred -- a period that spanned nearly four decades.

Got that? Over four decades, in at least 500 alleged sex crimes involving 36 innocent victims, there was not one contemporaneous report of abuse.

If a pedophile was running loose for that long in small town, Rossiter said, "You would think someone would pick it up. Either at school or the parents or a close friend." 

On top of that, in a scandal involving national publicity, like the Sandusky case, Rossiter said, if you were a gate keeper at Penn State, you'd have to be on guard against criminals and drug addicts coming forward to seek a pay day.

"With national headlines and all these people lining up, you'd have to be more skeptical" of the claims," Rossiter said. 

But Penn State never even ran background checks to see if any of the alleged victims had criminal records. When Big Trial checked, we found that 12 of the 36 alleged victims who got paid did indeed have criminal records, including arrests for tampering with and fabricating physical evidence, identity theft, criminal conspiracy, theft, receiving stolen property, theft by deception, robbery and terroristic threats.

The way the system is supposed to work, somebody at Penn State should have investigated the stories told by the alleged victims.

"That's what you do, you investigate," Rossiter emphasized. "The key is to find corroboration for the victim's story, to see if their stories hold up."

But Penn State didn't do any of that. Instead, they just wrote checks. 

Why? Because the trustees had already decided that they would pay any price to save their beloved Nittany Lions. 

As for Jerry Sandusky, and his constitutional rights, nobody gave a damn.

The Defendant's Medical Records

In their civil claims of abuse, the 36 alleged victims portray Sandusky as a sexually insatiable predator with the virility of a male porn star in his 20s. According to the claims, Sandusky was constantly on the prowl for forced sex with boys, and never had any problems achieving an erection.

Sandusky’s medical records, however, from 2006 to 2008, depict a man in his 60s suffering from all kinds of ailments and conditions, including atrophied testicles and chronic prostatitis. 

A doctor who reviewed Sandusky’s medical records, but asked to remain anonymous, told Big Trial in an email, “This guy couldn’t get an erection no matter how he tried. Even Cialis/Viagra would probably not work.” 

The doctor added that because the medical issue was never raised at trial, Sandusky should have sued his lawyers for malpractice.

Doctors described Sandusky as having an “androgen deficient state,” meaning he had levels of male sex hormones so low it was unhealthy. Sandusky’s medical records state that he was undergoing “testosterone replacement therapy for significant low levels of both free and total testosterone.”

 Sandusky's medical records reveal that he was being treated with antibiotics for chronic prostatitis, an inflammation of the prostate commonly caused by bacterial infection that results in frequent and painful urination. Prostatitis can also cause sexual problems such as low libido, erectile dysfunction, and painful ejaculations.

Sandusky’s chronic prostatitis began in 2005 and continued through 2008, his medical records state. Doctors described Sandusky as being “light-headed” and suffering “dizziness” from using Flomax, which he began taking in 2006, because he was having trouble urinating.

In addition to his urological problems, Sandusky’s medical records list many ailments that raise the question of whether Sandusky was healthy and energetic enough to be out having rampant, promiscuous sex with all those boys. 

Sandusky’s ailments include cysts on one of his kidneys, a small aneurysm in his brain, a 2006 hernia operation, bleeding hemorrhoids, chest pains, headaches, drowsiness, elevated blood pressure, and sleep apnea. 

He was on thyroid medication when he went to the doctors and told them he began “falling apart” in 2005. By 2008, his doctors wrote, Sandusky reported he was falling asleep at the wheel and gotten involved in two car accidents.

The medical records also describe a distinctive feature of Sandusky’s anatomy that none of his accusers have ever mentioned.

On February 2, 2006, Dr. Frank B. Mahon at the Milton S. Hershey Medical Center, who was treating the 62-year-old Sandusky for chronic prostatitis, wrote that Sandusky had “small” testicles of “perhaps 2 cm” or centimeters each, which equals .787 of an inch. The average size of adult testicles are between two and three inches.

On December 18, 2008, another doctor at the Hershey Medical Center wrote that the 6-foot-1 210-pound former coach, nearly 65, had “marked testicular atrophy with very little palpable testicular tissue.”

In stark contrast to the way he is portrayed in the claims against him, a couple of law enforcement types who have observed Sandusky in close quarters describe him as an anomaly in the hyper-macho world of football coaches, saying he comes across as asexual.

There may be genetic reasons for that. Sandusky’s medical records state that as a boy, he had “delayed development of secondary sexual characteristics” that required shots, but they don’t say what kind of shots. Sandusky told his doctors he was “unable to have children” because his “sperm counts were low.”

Sandusky's medical records state that he suffered from hypothyroidism, [underactive thyroid] as well as hypogonadism, meaning his body didn’t produce enough testosterone to maintain good health.

The medical records, which date from 2006 to 2008, cover the same time period during which a couple of key trial accusers, Aaron Fisher and Sabastian Paden, claimed they were being raped hundreds of times by Sandusky. 

Fisher settled his civil case against Penn State for $7.5 million. Paden, whose lawyers won in court access to all the confidential records in the Penn State case that are still under a judge's seal, got the biggest pay out of all the alleged victims, $20 million.

Totaling up the allegations made in 36 civil claims that were paid, the alleged victims stated that they had been raped or sexually abused by Sandusky at a minimum of least 520 to 620 times.

At his trial, Sandusky’s lawyers never used his medical records in his defense, probably because they didn’t have time to even read boxes of grand jury testimony, or serve subpoenas on witnesses. 

In prison, Sandusky’s appeals lawyer said, he remains on a half-dozen medications, including continuing testosterone replacement therapy, and Terazosin for continuing prostate infections.

There’s another angle to the story of Sandusky’s medical records -- there are 36 alleged victims who got paid after claiming they were raped and abused hundreds of times by Sandusky, including nine alleged victims who claim that Sandusky had engaged with them in high-risk and apparently unprotected anal sex.

Yet not one of these alleged victim has ever asked to see Sandusky’s medical records, to find out whether he had HIV or any venereal disease. Nor has any victim ever sought to have Sandusky tested for any diseases.

That's the kind of evidence that would aid a criminal case. In a civil case, if Sandusky was found to have infected his victims with disease, it would have raised the damages.

But in the Penn State case, none of the alleged victims ever pursued the disclosure of any of Sandusky’s medical records. 

You have to ask why. 

And whether the answer is because it never really happened.  

The Last Word

Jerry Sandusky is a relic from another time. He's an only child who was the son of Polish immigrants. His father, Art Sandusky, a trolley conductor, was the coach of a local baseball team who ran a recreation center that took in troubled kids and hired disabled people as employees.

At the recreation center, the motto hung on the wall by Sandusky's father said, "Don't give up on a bad boy, because he might turn out to be a great young man." Jerry Sandusky, a devout Methodist who grew up in that rec center, adopted his father's mission, and was out to save the world one troubled kid at a time.

At the rec center,  it was a common practice for men and boys to shower together. When Sandusky first got in trouble in 1998, for taking a shower with 11 year-old Zachary Konstas, after a complaint from the boy's mother, the incident wound up being investigated by authorities that included an official from the Centre County Children and Youth Services, a detective from the Penn State police, an investigator from the state Department of Public Welfare, the boy's therapist, as well as a psychologist hired by the county.

The authorities concluded that there was no evidence of abuse or of any sexual conduct whatsoever, so the mother's alleged claim was officially deemed unfounded. As recounted in The Most Hated Man In America; Jerry Sandusky and the Rush to Judgment, by author Mark Pendergrast, the psychiatrist who questioned young Zach Konstas for an hour concluded:

"The behavior exhibited by Mr. Sandusky is directly consistent with what can be seen as an expected daily routine of being a football coach. This evaluator spoke to various coaches from high school and college football teams and asked about their locker room behavior. Through verbal reports from these coaches it is not unusual for them to shower with players. This appears to be a widespread, acceptable situation and it appears that Mr. Sandusky followed through with patterning that he has probably done without thought for many years."

The problem in the Sandusky case is that the customs of an earlier time, as in a communal shower for men and boys, are being viewed through a modern lens. 

Since he couldn't have kids of his own, Jerry and his wife Dottie adopted six children, five girls and a boy. Only one of those adopted kids, Matt Sandusky, who took his adoptive dad's name, would ultimately claim to be abused. 

According to author Mark Pendergrast, after Matt sat next to his adoptive mother on the first day of the Sandusky trial and heard the alleged victim spout accusations of abuse that were the result of recovered memory therapy, Matt came home and told one of his siblings, "This is ridiculous. Anyone can make accusations without evidence, and get paid. I could, you could, anyone could . . . but I actually have morals."

Three days later, Matt famously flipped. After first telling authorities he hadn't been abused, Matt gave a statement to the police that said that after he went to a psychiatrist, he had recalled memories of past abuse. His flip earned him an appearance on Oprah, and a civil settlement of $325,000.

The other five of Sandusky's adopted kids, however, told Pendergrast that they'd never been abused, and that they didn't believe that Matt had ever been abused either. 

I'll leave the last words to the man who's been in prison for the past ten years as a result of egregious official misconduct and a decade of media malpractice. 

"I am an innocent person, wrongly convicted by sinister ways of deception, dishonesty and disregard," Sandusky wrote from prison.

"I did not commit the heinous crimes I was accused of doing. Oral and anal sex never entered my mind, nor did I ever engage in them with anybody. This includes my wife, who has been my only sexual partner and loyally stands with me today."

"I didn't hurt those kids, nor did they act like I did," Sandusky wrote. "My focus was on helping them."


  1. Ralph, seriously, you've lost it with this ridiculous piece.

  2. Very concise synopsis of what actually happened in this case. From the beginning, thanks to the media and Penn State itself, this was an actual rush to judgment. Reading this one would question “how could this happen?” With the caliber of people in this case it is very easy to see how it happened….and it DID happen. The prosecutors, AG office personnel, Corbett, Cleland, etc., should be the ones in jail. Following this case for ten years, there is one word for the people who enabled the outcome. SHAMEFUL!

  3. Great job, Ralph! If people would just read what you wrote with an open mind, you’ve made the case that Sandusky needs a new trial however, let’s be honest, he’s got no shot of that happening in Pennsylvania since there are too many people who are totally invested in the pedophile narrative including the former governor. There’s no way the state of Pennsylvania is going to admit they screwed up. His case needs to go to the federal court system and the case will be reversed but how do you undo the mess it’s created? How do you get the money back from the frauds who were called victims? I hope the case leaves Pennsylvania soon. An innocent man is in prison. Use your brain people!!!

  4. An incredible spectacle, Ralph, my compliments on your dedication to the truth in this area, whatever that truth may be. The more I read about the Sandusky situation the more confused and angry I become about all of the obvious breaches of civilized legal conduct by the authorities involved.

    Malfeasance of this type, of course, can be applied in other ways and directions, endangering any citizen unfortunate enough to be drawn under this deliberate abuse of power.

    Sad and disgusting , really, that in a state with our history of revolution against tyranny and the historic demands for equal justice for all men, that so many of our leading public officials ignore these fundamental principles in regards to any private citizen, even one with the publicly debased reputation of Sandusky.

    Keep up the great work. The people need you.

  5. The residents of Happy Valley have know Sandusky to be a child predator years before Mike McQueary came forward.

    Hard to believe you think this POS deserves a retrial.

    1. With respect to you and the residents you mention, if Sandusky's behavior was known for years beforehand, why did no one step forward before Mike McQueary ?

  6. Hey Ralph, many of my friends as well as myself like to read your articles because you are not afraid to state the facts. There is one thing that most of us agree on and that is how long and redundant some of your context is. Please remember when writing that many people don't have too much time to read the entire story and a lot of us have the concentration span of a goldfish.

  7. I hear ya. In this one we were covering a lot of ground, trying to provide a synopsis of some 60 blog posts over five years. If you made it through, you deserve a medal.

    I wanted to convey the totality of the official misconduct and corruption in this case, and, believe it or not, I left a lot of stuff out.

    1. And the main stream media does not care about official misconduct or corruption, they turn their heads.

  8. You really like defending child abusers.

  9. Credit as to a meticulous well-written synopsis but think you might have given credit to John Ziegler and his tenacious research over the years given fruition in the lengthy but electrifying podcast 'With the benefit of hindsight' (apple & spotify free podcasts). I realise he is what we call in the UK a 'marmite figure' but he does credit you and Pendergrast, an old and revered colleague of mine. So a little reciprocation might be in order.

  10. John Ziegler has done great work on Penn State. But the material presented above was reported previously on this blog by myself & Mark Pendergrast. In the Mayor of Maple Avenue story on this blog, I use and credit some recent reporting by John regarding Sara Ganim's latest fraudulent work.

  11. Listened to Johns podcast and now reading this article. What a travesty for all the 5 men’s lives that have been ruined by these ALLEGED victims. Read there stories and how much of a scam artist they and there lawyers are. Mike M. is a piece of shit but hey he got $10M. Not sure how he could show his face in state college. Used to see him at Cafe 210 in college. Always seemed like a deuschbag. However the BOT is the largest group of cowards and self absorbed pieces of shit. They had an opportunity to calm the waters but rushed to judgement that crucified the 5. Now they are just trying keep things covered instead of admitting g they were wrong.

  12. Great Job Ralph , way to get the truth out there. We need more people like you to publish the truth.


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