Former Penn State President Graham Spanier has been charged with perjury, child endangerment, conspiracy and obstruction of justice, and former administrators Gary Schultz and Tim Curley are also facing additional charges in connection with the Jerry Sandusky child sex abuse case, according to court documents filed Thursday in Dauphin County.
Pennsylvania Attorney General Linda Kelly is giving a press conference at noon today at the Capitol Building in Harrisburg, though the details of what would be discussed could not be confirmed
Spanier is the third Penn State administrator to be charged in connection with the Sandusky case. In November 2011, former Athletic Director Tim Curley and former Interim Senior Vice President for Finance and Business Gary Schultz were charged with perjury and failure to report suspected abuse. As of today, Curley and Schultz were also charged with endangering the welfare of children, obstruction of justice and the conspiracy to commit the crimes they are being charged with, in addition to charges of perjury and failure to report filed in November 2011.
The following is a copy of the grand jury presentment detailing charges against former Penn State President Graham Spanier, former Athletic Director Tim Curley and former interim Senior Vice President for Business and Finance Gary Schultz.
Prosecutors said at a preliminary hearing in December 2011 that Curley and Schultz failed to act on a report that Sandusky was acting inappropriately with a boy in an on-campus shower area and lied about what they knew about the situation in front of a grand jury.
In a statement released on Penn State Live, the university announced that Spanier has been placed on leave, effective immediatly. Spanier was on a one-year sabbatical but remained a tenured professor.
Curley was also on leave on a fixed-term contract but was recently notified that his contract will not be renewed in June 2013. Schultz returned to retirement in November after being charged with perjury and failure to report suspected abuse.
Spanier was removed from his position as president by the Board of Trustees on Nov. 9 – though in a civil suit filed in May that he has since dropped, the former university president asserted he offered his resignation from Penn State.
Spanier was heavily implicated in the report by former FBI Director Louis Freeh that was released July 12. Freeh’s probe examined top Penn State administrators’ response to reports that Sandusky was sexually abusing boys on the Penn State campus.
Spanier, along with Curley, Schultz and the late former head football coach Joe Paterno, was implicated in the report. The Freeh investigators said in the report that Spanier, Schultz, Curley and Paterno were aware of two incidents involving Sandusky acting inappropriately with boys in showers located in the Lasch Football Building.
The first incident took place in 1998 when Penn State Police investigated Sandusky for showering with the boy known in court documents as “Victim 6.” According to the Freeh Report, Spanier had knowledge of the investigation
Then, in 2001, then-graduate assistant Mike McQueary told Paterno, Curley and Schultz that he had seen Sandusky acting inappropriately in a Lasch Football Building shower with a boy known in court documents as “Victim 2,” according to testimony.
Emails obtained by the Freeh Group outline the administrators’ response to the report, and Freeh investigators said these messages showed that they decided to not report the incident to proper authorities, despite having knowledge of a separate investigation into Sandusky that had occurred three years earlier.
After not deciding to report the 2001 incident, Spanier emailed Curley and Schultz, according to Freeh’s findings, saying “the only downside for us is if the message isn’t ‘heard’ and acted upon, and we then become vulnerable for not having reported it. But that can be assessed down the road. The approach you outline is humane and a reasonable way to proceed.”
Attorneys representing Spanier said in a statement that Freeh’s conclusions were not supported by facts. Spanier maintains his innocence.
His attorneys continued in the statement, saying “at no time in his 16 years as president of Penn State was Dr. Spanier told of any incident involving Jerry Sandusky that described child abuse, sexual misconduct, or criminality of any nature.”
According to a statement from his attorneys issued in July, Spanier was interviewed by Freeh Group investigators in early July at his own request.
In a July 23 letter to the Board of Trustees, Spanier wrote is "unfathomable and illogical" to think that he, a person who personally experienced child abuse, would have "knowingly turned a blind eye" to any report of abuse.
Spanier also wrote to the trustees that Penn State's former General Counsel Cynthia Baldwin, who he does not name specifically in the letter, told Spanier that there appeared to be no issue for the university.
Spanier also filed a lawsuit against Penn State on May 24 asking the university to turn over copies of emails related to the Sandusky case so he could better prepare himself to speak with the Freeh Group as part of the internal investigation.
In the lawsuit, Spanier's attorneys wrote that he offered to resign from his position on Nov. 9 "so as to allow the Board of Trustees to have a free hand in investigating certain allegations of sexual misconduct relating to [Sandusky]," and the trustees accepted the offer. Spanier eventually dropped the lawsuit against the university.
Curley and Schultz's trial is slated to begin Jan. 7. They have both maintained their innocence through their attorneys, Caroline Roberto and Thomas Farrell, respectively.
Sandusky was sentenced to 30 to 60 years in prison in October after being found guilty in late June on 45 counts of sexually abusing boys he met through his charity, The Second Mile.
A hearing is scheduled for Dec. 10 to discuss post-sentencing motions Sandusky filed arguing for a new trial and a reconsideration for a modified sentence, as previously reported.
Collegian staff writers Anna Orso and Mindy Szkaradnik contributed to this report.