Reading the Sandusky Controversy (legal documents)

This is by no means an exhaustive list of reading material, nor will I pretend that I’ve got every single detail explained as it should be. This is a very complicated story that is constantly evolving, and as we’ve discussed in class, my lens will be different than someone else’s. That’s why I will mostly stick to documents that are central to the legal cases.

On November 5, 2011, Jerry Sandusky was arrested based on the findings of a Grand Jury which is detailed in this Presentment.

The Penn State Board of Trustees asked former FBI director, Louis Freeh to independently investigate Penn State’s actions in all aspects of the Jerry Sandusky case. In July of 2012, The Freeh Report was made public.

On July 23, 2012, The NCAA imposed sanctions on the Penn State Football Program.

There were significant consequences for Penn State as an institution and for numerous individuals as a result of the three reports I noted above, but you can find all of those news pieces anywhere. What you won’t often find are people who have read all of the words in those documents. As scholars of civic life, I’m challenging you to do research when you’re faced with a controversy–especially one as crucial to civic life as this one.

I can’t remember who asked questions about the most recent statement released by Penn State and President Barron to which I think I responded with some frustration. It wasn’t about you guys–there are just so many ins and outs to this case that I can barely keep up and I’m watching pretty closely. Let me try to explain the most recent legal situation that’s directly connected to Sandusky and Paterno. Remember that I’m not a legal scholar and that I’m trying to keep the explanation brief.

Over the last few years, Penn State has paid over $90 million in civil settlements to more than 30 victims. These cases have, of course, been kept out of the media and settled very quickly. Penn State, however, has been in court battles with its insurance company over who should cover the costs of the settlements. On July 12, the judge in the insurance company (PMA) vs. Penn State case unsealed documents revealing much more testimony about Jerry Sandusky that many are saying is damning to Joe Paterno, several other coaches, and university officials.

Take a look and see what you think.

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