Penn State’s former president will go before District Judge William Wenner this morning after being charged with endangering the welfare of children in connection with the Jerry Sandusky sex abuse case.
Graham Spanier, who was removed from his position shortly after charges against Sandusky were announced last November, faces charges of perjury, child endangerment, obstruction of justice and failure to report suspected abuse, as well as conspiracy to commit the previously mentioned crimes, according to court documents filed Thursday morning.
His arraignment is scheduled to begin at 9:30 a.m. today in Harrisburg.
Charges against Spanier, as well as additional charges against former Athletic Director Tim Curley and former Interim Senior Vice President for Finance and Business Gary Schultz, were announced Thursday morning at a press conference held by Pennsylvania Attorney General Linda Kelly.
At the press conference, Kelly said the three former Penn State administrators perpetuated and maintained the silence that allowed Sandusky to sexually abuse young boys on and around the Penn State campus.
“This is not a mistake, an oversight or a misjudgment,” Kelly said. “This was a conspiracy of silence by top officials at Penn State, working to actively conceal the truth, with total disregard to the suffering of children.”
Shortly following Kelly’s conference, Spanier responded with a statement of his own, maintaining his innocence and explaining that the charges were a result of a personal feud he had and continues to have with Gov. Tom Corbett.
“These charges are the work of a vindictive and politically motivated Governor working through an un-elected attorney general, Linda Kelly, whom he appointed to do his bidding,” the statement read.
Corbett responded soon after with his own statement via email. He wrote that Spanier’s statement “is the ranting of a man who has just been indicted for covering up a convicted pedophile.”
Spanier faces two felony charges, as well as two misdemeanors and a summary offense, according to the criminal complaint. Each felony charge carries a maximum sentence of seven years in prison and a fine of $15,000, as previously reported.