The Latest on the Penn State Child Sex Abuse Scandal

h/t Angry Black Lady Chronicles (via Angry Little Girls)

I don’t know about YOU, but I’ve got OWS Fatigue, thanks to the media going full tilt on it. Overkill, overdone, over IT. Stick a fork in it a serve it up Thursday, I say.

Now what’s going on at Penn State and the rest of central Pennsylvania, THAT I can get some outrage mustered over. Especially considering that the first victim to come forward has had to leave his school in the middle of his senior year because his fellow students were bullying & threatening him.

Victim One, the first known alleged victim of abuse by former Penn State coach Jerry Sandusky, had to leave his school in the middle of his senior year because of bullying, his counselor said Sunday.

Officials at Central Mountain High School in Clinton County weren’t providing guidance for fellow students, who were reacting badly about Joe Paterno’s firing and blaming the 17-year-old, said Mike Gillum, the psychologist helping his family. Those officials were unavailable for comment this weekend.The name-calling and verbal threats were just too much, he said.

This answers the age old question of why victims are reluctant to report, especially when sex crimes are involved: because they are relentlessly harassed if they do. I want to know where the school administrators were during all of this, and what steps they are taking now. Names should be taken and more heads should roll.

There’s some good news, though. Penn State is throwing its weight behind an independent investigation of the University’s actions in the case, going all the way back to 1975. They’ve hired Louis Freeh to head the investigation.

Louis Freeh, former FBI director, will lead an independent investigation into the details of the sex abuse case involving former Penn State assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky.

The time frame of the investigation could go back to 1975, Freeh said, two years before Sandusky started his Second Mile charity to help at-risk children. According to the grand jury report, all of the alleged victims met Sandusky through the Second Mile.

“We’re not conducting a criminal investigation,” Freeh said. “If we find or run across any evidence of criminality, we will report that immediately. We will ask criminal investigators for their help.”

In addition, Second Mile is considering its next steps, which include closing down the organization entirely.

“Because the focus of our organization is on the children, The Second Mile is currently exploring three options: (1) restructuring the organization and keeping its programs going, even if it means doing so at a reduced level of service and funding, (2) maintaining the programs by transferring them to other organizations or (3) not continuing,” the statement said.

“Our primary goal is to sustain the programs for the sake of the kids.”

About a quarter of the 32-member board has quit since the charges against Sandusky were announced on November 5, the source said.

That’s a lot of board members resigning…

And finally, wrapping it up, Penn State stares down the barrel of a series of expected civil lawsuits:

The university is vulnerable because the investigation suggests it knew that Mr. Sandusky was suspected of preying on children and did little to stop it. But Penn State faces a dilemma: some of the options available to it as it considers a legal defense could have negative repercussions on its reputation.

Given the growing number of plaintiffs, the alleged cover-up described in the grand jury report, and possible civil rights violations that might push some lawsuits to federal court, the legal picture for the university is expected to get very messy, very fast.

You know how I feel about that: Good. These things never change unless significant amounts of cash are at stake–and lost.

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14 Responses to The Latest on the Penn State Child Sex Abuse Scandal

  1. DeniseVB says:

    I have no sympathy for any NFL farm team (aka NCAA Football), especially when it comes to abusing children. Ick. Ick.

    I did like the movie “Rudy” though 😉

  2. yttik says:

    I hate people, too.

    I hope there are a lot of civil suits because that’s the best way to teach an institution that they have a legal and moral obligation to protect kids.

    It also strikes me as odd that the charity is thinking about shutting down. Why? Did you exist for the sole purpose of providing Sandusky access to vulnerable boys? What, you can’t function now that you don’t have a pedophile in your organization?

    • elliesmom says:

      More likely the dissolution of the charity is also related to the possibility of lawsuits. How would you get money out of an organization that no longer exists?

    • Lola-at-Large says:

      Plus, who would want to their kids to participate. Folding might be the best way to go. They certainly can’t operate under their current name.

    • lisadawn82 says:

      I’m guessing that the people are not going to want to send their kids to this charity because of their previous lack of oversight. Best thing to do is to shut down the organization.

  3. yttik says:

    Yes, I don’t know how that works as far as lawsuits and a defunct charity go? But I do believe in restorative justice, the financial kind, in cases of sexual abuse. I think it sends a powerful message to those who chose to cover up for pedophiles.

  4. Lola-at-Large says:

    I really can’t believe students at that high school hounded the boy out. I hope measures are taken for his safety and the safety of his family, and that punitive action against students who bullied him is taken. Expulsion comes to mind. Make them move to finish their educations.

  5. insanelysane says:

    Pennsylvania born and from a Penn State family…
    I stand with Tom in Paine.

    http://tominpaine.blogspot.com/

    Joe Paterno should sue for libel and journalists should lose their jobs.

    No one disputes the hideousness of the crime that SOB Sandusky apparently perpetrated, but to take down a venerated hero for no truth and all rumor disgusts me.
    This mob mentality is the evil that pervades our culture.

    • T says:

      The venerated hero was not such a hero. That was the lie.

    • Susan says:

      When reporters asked Paterno what he was going to do after an especially hard loss, he responded, “I’m going to go home and beat my wife.”

      Joe Paterno is an asshole who should’ve been ditched years ago.

      People who worship sports figures are a particularly frightening example of a mob mentality.

  6. Susan says:

    Louis Freeh doesn’t know anything about sexual abuse. He’s never investigated or prosecuted cases of sexual abuse. He’s a conservative Catholic (member of Opus Dei) and we know how they view pedophilia. To top it off, he was a really bad director of the FBI.

    Penn State should have hired someone with some actual experience in field. Their choice is the equivalent of replacing the football coach with the baseball coach. I guarantee that his “investigation” will protect the school and Paterno.

    I

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