Former Penn State president Graham Spanier has become the third school official to be charged with crimes in the alleged cover-up in the Jerry Sandusky case. Earlier in October, Sandusky was convicted on charges of sexual abuse, including forty-five counts of sexual abuse against ten victims over a span of fifteen years. He faces a sentence of thirty to sixty years in prison – essentially a life sentence for the 68 year-old former Penn State official.
Spanier, who is being charged for the first time in the case, along with former Athletic Director Tim Curley and ex-Vice President Gary Schultz are now facing the same charges: obstruction of justice, perjury, conspiracy, endangering the welfare of children, and failure to report allegations of child abuse. They have been accused of having “used their positions to conceal and cover up for years the activities of a known child predator,” said Pennsylvania’s attorney general Linda L. Kelly on Thursday. They “worked to actively conceal the truth with total disregard to the children who were victims in the case.”
Curley and Schultz continue to claim their innocence, while Spanier’s attorneys insist that he was never told there was anything going on between Sandusky and children. Sandusky also continues to maintain his innocence.
Spanier had spent sixteen years as University President until he was forced out of his position after Sandusky’s November 2011 arrest. He denies any knowledge of the widespread child molestation, and has said he has no recollection of emails concerning complaints about Sandusky, the first of which came from a woman in 1998 saying Sandusky had showered with her son.
“This was a conspiracy of silence by top officials to actively conceal the truth,” Kelly told reporters. Curley and Schultz are slated to go to trial early in January, while the investigation of Spanier continues.
New York Times