Monday, November 17, 2014

Dr. Barron: A letter about your Freeh Report 'review'

Dear President Barron,

On Friday you announced that you would conduct your own review of the raw materials that went into the creation of the Freeh Report. Clearly you are responding to the many calls over the last two years to analyze the report, however I must caution you that this attempt you are making is only destined to fail for the exact same reasons the Freeh Report itself did. The internal, secretive nature of your review is the exact issue which got us here in the first place.

Almost immediately after it's release many critical reviews noticed that Mr. Freeh had taken liberties with his conclusions, omitted key information, and flat out lied. It was quite clear from the moment you pick up this report that it was fatally flawed from the start. One has to look no further than the Appendices where Mr. Freeh can't count to ten correctly; omitting Exhibits 1, 4, 7, 8, and 9. Add to that the fact that virtually none of the key players in the scandal were interviewed, and that reports exist that people who were interviewed felt that investigators were looking for predetermined answers.

Recently of course you are aware that court cases have led to the release of hundreds of emails that show that the Freeh report was biased and corrupted from before Penn State even had a legal engagement contract with Mr. Freeh. Thus the announcement when Mr. Freeh was hired that he would be independent and turn over every stone was a lie. The emails unequivocally show that the NCAA, Big Ten Conference, and the Penn State Special Investigations Task Force led Mr. Freeh where they wanted him to go. In the interest of "moving forward", Penn State (the corporate institution, not the community at large) decided it was most expedient to blame our "football culture" rather than search for hard truths like those Jim Clemente wrote about in his report at, or the fact that the child welfare system in Pennsylvania is severely flawed (see my posts at on the Tutko and Lee cases at or many at

Now back to your review. What you appear to be doing is looking at everything in private and then making some kind of an announcement about what you find. This is the same thing Mr. Freeh did. It will fail because people view you as just another tool that the 'old guard' Board will use to hide the truth. I have no doubt you are an intelligent man, and know much better than I how to run our great university. I know there is great political pressure to bear. However your actions of recent months show that you are stuck on the wrong side of this fight. First your email regarding "civility", and then your exit from the recent board meeting to (from what I hear) glad hand some big donors. What could be more important than discovering the real truth here? Now this review. Frankly Dr. Barron, no one puts any trust in your actions regarding the Freeh report. I wish I could say differently, but that's the truth. The only thing likely to come of this is further subpoenas and depositions for the emails, discussions, notes, and conversations that go into your report.

It is for that reason that I urge you to halt this review and immediately open a formal public review. Call for Mr. Freeh to return to campus as his contract demands and answer to the Board and the Penn State community at large. If he is confident in his report he will have no problem coming to defend it. Hold public hearings where both the board and the public can ask critical questions, and immediately release ALL source materials on the Progress website. Until this happens, no amount of 'internal' reviews will quell the public anger, and Penn State will never be allowed to move forward. Surely you can see that multiple courts are going to investigate this matter themselves. It is time for Penn State to come clean, and stop hiding from the truths. I look forward to your response.

John Yonchuk
Biology '99

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Who decided to remove the Paterno Statue?

In an earlier post I speculated that the Penn State Board of Trustees helped write the consent decree and the sanctions that came along with it. Ray Blehar has gone into much more detail at as well. With the two recent releases of emails (here and here) in the Corman v. NCAA suit I wanted to revisit this idea and add to it.

Revisiting my old post I still think there is no doubt that the Board wanted the sanctions and the SITF made sure the Freeh report said this was all a football problem, but I found some interesting items that seem to point towards the NCAA piling on, which may have caught the power bloc of the board by surprise.

The interesting events occurred in the days leading up to the removal of the Paterno statue and the announcement of the consent decree. Don Van Natta reported on July 15th that the Board decided to keep the statue.

Two days later Donald Remy emails Omar McNeil of the Freeh Group to tell him that NCAA President Mark Emmert has requested a meeting with Louis Freeh:

This was the same day that Emmert had scheduled a conference call with the Division I board of directors about the situation at Penn State:

Just two days later Chairman Peetz requested a conference call for all voting members of the board where she attached an article that would foreshadow how the power bloc wanted to play the scandal and its position moving forward:

Shortly after the request for a conference call the NCAA sprung a surprise on the Board, the vacation of all wins.

It was only at this point that the representative for Penn State, Gene Marsh, began to protest, saying he felt that the NCAA was trying to reform college athletics through one case. 

What can we "reasonably conclude" from these exchanges? I think there are two things that were likely to have happened. First, it seems the Board really did want to salvage some of Paterno's legacy and was prepared to leave the statue where it was. They knew that removal of the statue would incense many alumni and they have been trying the whole time in this scandal to play both sides. However it appears that the NCAA and Emmert may have demanded the removal of the statue AND of course obviously demanded the removal of the past wins of Joe Paterno. They conveniently 'forgot' to mention it until it appears most of the consent decree was negotiated. Marsh correctly knew this would be a point of contention because he likely knew that while the Board wanted blame on Paterno, they didn't want too much, as it would keep attention on their failures from angry alumni. 

From the outset of the Sandusky scandal Corbett, the OAG, the Board, the B1G, and the NCAA have made one supreme miscalculation that is a basic principle of conflict. Never underestimate your enemy. They underestimated what Joe Paterno meant to our great school, and how far many of us will go to fight for his good name. It appears likely that the Board underestimated the NCAA's vindictiveness and self-promotional nature when trying to play both sides in the negotiation of sanctions. They will pay dearly for that. 

Friday, October 31, 2014

Letter to the NYT: Frazier and Dandrea walk back the "exhaustive" nature of Freeh report

In your editorial, “Penn State’s Part” on July 12, 2012, you were quick to condemn Penn State leaders, especially Coach Paterno, in the aftermath of the Freeh Report. You described the report as an “exhaustive investigation” that supposedly showed how some put football above child safety. Two years later, after the Penn State Board actually met to discuss a possible review of that report, those who supported it previously are now the ones calling it incomplete.

During a recent Board meeting, two trustees who have led the charge to have Freeh’s work accepted, entirely debunked it. When asked “do you believe that Louis Freeh did a complete, thorough investigation?” Ken Frazier responded “The answer to that is no”. Rick Dandrea stated that “there could be significant evidence coming from any one of these legal proceedings that would render moot what would at best be a premature attempt to address these questions” in reference to the multiple civil and criminal lawsuits still ongoing. Penn Staters everywhere noted these problems with the report when it was released, yet the major media outlets ignored it. Judge Freeh wrote a rushed, partial report that some at PSU bought and paid for. If you don’t believe that ask yourself where are exhibits 1, 4, 7, 8, & 9?

The tide has turned. Judges across Pennsylvania are forcing parties into the courtroom. Frazier and Dandrea are walking back their positions. The truth is coming, that this had nothing to do with Penn State Football. It’s time for the Times editorial board to correct the record as well. Children are still being harmed in PA due to this false narrative.

John Yonchuk

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Christopher G. Lee...a.k.a. Sandusky Lite

Christopher Lee appears to be another central PA child sex offender who was protected by powerful people in law enforcement. When will someone put a stop to this corruption in PA?

Jerry Sandusky sexually abused children with impunity as a child molester in central PA for more than a decade based on current convictions (and likely more than 3 decades in total if other allegations end up proving true). Over the course of his reign there were a series of, shall we say, fortunate developments that prevented him from being put behind bars where he belonged. They included the ignoring of Dr. Alycia Chambers report indicating signs of abuse in 1998, the failure of Dr. Jack Raykovitz to make a report after he was informed of the 2001 shower incident, and perhaps other yet to be publicized or verified allegations. As stated by the Moulton Report there were "inexplicable delays" in investigating Sandusky. It turns out that Sandusky may not have been the only preferential child sex abuser in the central PA region to be protected by people in high places. Let me introduce you to Christopher G. Lee.

Christopher Lee - Sandusky Lite?

First it was Sandusky, now we have the unfolding case of Christopher G. Lee, CEO of Boal Mansion and Harris Township Supervisor. If you are unfamiliar, Mr. Lee was arrested on Thursday 02 October 2014 on federal charges of child exploitation and child pornography and a "litany of crimes surrounding misconduct with children". The case stems from an initial report earlier this year by a young victim who alleges misconduct on Mr. Lee's part during stays at the mansion between January and June of this year. From news reports it appears that authorities suspect he may have other victims, and they have good reason.

That is because Christopher Lee was previously charged with indecent assault, corruption of minors, and harassment in 2005 when two boys ages 8 and 10 alleged inappropriate touching while they stayed at the mansion. Curiously, that case was adjudicated with an imposition of an Accelerated Rehabilitative Disposition, or ARD program.

Strangely, this was not the original plan. In September of 2005 the Daily Collegian reported a trial date was being set and that Lee faced a minimum jail sentence of 5 years. The docket however, tells a different story that unfolded. The original conference in the case was handled in the courtroom of Judge David E. Grine. If you aren't familiar with the Sandusky case you may not have heard this name. However if you are, you would know that Judge Grine is the same Judge who released Matt Sandusky into the care of Jerry and Dottie Sandusky . That judgement was in opposition to both Matt's biological mother and a school probation officer, both of whom argued against the placement. Sandusky had a psychologist write on his behalf, though it's unclear who this was or what they wrote. At the time Judge Grine refused to comment.

How does one go from a minimum of 5 years in jail to community service? In the Lee case, ARD was recommended by the DA at the time, Michael Madeira, also in opposition to the mother of the victims in the case who wanted the case to proceed. By imposing ARD, Lee would complete some community service and counseling, and then most of the record would then be expunged. According to that CDT article Madeira claimed that he wanted to spare the children a trial saying "It was just not a risk I was willing to take". However, a source I have spoken to who has direct knowledge of the case says that Madeira told a much different story at the time. The source says that Madeira told the court the victims were unwilling to testify and that when the victims later learned this and stated they did want to proceed, Madeira told them the DA's office could not afford to cover the travel costs associated toreturn for trial, as they had moved to the west coast. In the words of my source, Madeira "screwed" them. With no supposed willing victims the court took what it could get with ARD.

Madeira also played a role in the delay arresting Jerry Sandusky as well. According to Geoffrey Moulton's report, it was Madeira who claimed he did not recall being informed about the 1998 Sandusky investigation. To review, Sandusky was originally accused of abusing Aaron Fisher in Clinton County but the case was referred by Clinton County DA Michael Salisbry to Centre County, and Madeira, allegedly because most of his crimes had taken place there. At the time of the referral to Centre County, First Assistant Mark Smith, who had been in the office in 1998, says that he informed Madeira of the previous investigation. Madeira, being married to a relative of one of Sandusky's adopted children, then passed the case off to the PA OAG due to his conflict where it languished with little activity for more than 2 years (leading to the abuse of additional victims), and informed no one of the 1998 case. In an ironic twist of fate (or more depending on your perspective), Michael Madeira is now employed by...Penn State. I contacted Mr. Madeira for this story but received no response.

A second connection to the Sandusky case is the defense lawyer for Mr. Lee. Representing Christopher Lee is none other than Joe Amendola, who unsuccessfully tried to defend Jerry Sandusky against the child sexual abuse charges in 2012. You will recall Amendola himself has had a past of suspect behavior with children himself, impregnating a 16 year old girl who he was representing, and whom he later married.

In yet another twist, a player in the Penn State fallout of the Sandusky scandal is closely tied to the Lee case as well. PSU Trustee Anne Riley, who sat on the Board during the firing of Joe Paterno and Graham Spanier, has close connections with Lee. You will recall that Riley "voted" to fire Paterno, despite the fact that Paterno and his wife Sue did everything they could to save her dad's life when he had collapsed in their kitchen (and later died), as detailed in Jay Paterno's book "Paterno Legacy: Enduring Lessons from the Life and Death of My Father". Mrs. Riley also just happened to sit on two local Boards with Mr Lee; the Boalsburg Heritage Museum Board and the Mount Nittany Conservacy Board. Not only did Mrs. Riley sit on multiple boards with Mr. Lee but a local source who attended State College Area High School where Riley taught for 30 years says that Riley brought Mr. Lee into the school and introduced him as her boyfriend.

Another connection to the Sandusky case here is through another member of the Boalsburg Heritage Museum. Sitting on the Museum board along with Mrs. Riley and Christopher Lee was Ron Coder. Ron, a former PSU football player, was hired as an executive director at Second Mile according to Sandusky's book Touched. From page 185:

On top of that connection Ron's wife, Hope, was a very close friend of the Sandusky family. Rumors have been circulating for years now that the Sandusky scandal hid something much much bigger in central PA, a child pedophile ring. As we start to peel back the layers here it doesn't seem so far fetched. What is clear is that many of these people were well acquainted with each other and also had common business interests.

Why won't PA Law Enforcement and Welfare Agencies Protect Children? Why do advocates ignore real problems?

In the immediate aftermath of Mr. Lee's arrest, news articles contained the usual quotes and comments from "experts" and "advocates" that you often now see in these stories. In the case of Lee, this included reporting of the previous arrest and questions about the ARD disposition. There was one particular comment from Jennifer Storm, Victim Advocate for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, that caught my eye. According to her website, in her position Storm is:
"responsible for representing the rights and interests of crime victims before the Board of Probation and Parole and the Department of Corrections and to provide notification to crime victims of the potential for inmate release, opportunity to provide testimony, and notification of the inmate’s movement within the correctional system. Further, Ms. Storm is responsible for advocating the interests of adult and juvenile crime victims throughout Pennsylvania."
Yet one comment on the Lee case struck an odd tone.

'Storm says a number of changes to the laws regarding sexual assault came out of the Jerry Sandusky sex abuse scandal. These include changes to the legal definition of the term “perpetrator,” as well as more stringent reporting requirements. Though Storm is not overly familiar with the details of the 2005 allegations against Lee, she points out these changes were not yet in place then.
“In terms of any assaultive behaviors involving minors, one of the huge lessons we learned – not just from Jerry Sandusky, but from many teacher sexual assaults – is that when these crimes are never reported or left undiscovered, that’s a huge part of the problem,” Storm says.'

Storm focuses her comments on changes to the law made in light of the Sandusky case. What is unusual is that Lee had already been reported in 2005 and was allowed by law enforcement and the courts to enter a light rehabilitative program, expunge his record, and then continue as a Township Supervisor! Why? He was then very clearly reported again this year. Why does Mrs. Storm think reporting laws, or definitions of perpetrators would have anything to do with this case? Lee was reported, arrested, charged, arraigned, and then let off easy for some reason. The problem was not reporting, it was what was done once he was reported.

This is a strange statement especially in light of some other comments made by Storm when the Lee story first broke. Storm stated that the ARD program is not usually intended for such crimes:

"Jennifer Storm, the governor-appointed Commonwealth Victim Advocate of Pennsylvania, says the ARD program is traditionally intended for use by first-time DUI offenders. Though the program has occasionally seen misdemeanor domestic violence cases, she says ARD is generally not intended for use in alleged crimes with a specific victim or bodily injury."

It is not at all clear how better reporting standards would have stopped Mr. Lee. This is especially true since the first time he was reported he was left off without almost any penalty at all. As far as I can tell, Mrs. Storm has not publicly added anything else to the record on the Lee case specifically, or explained in any way how better reporting laws would have stopped Mr. Lee. I contacted Mrs. Storm for this piece and she replied stating:

"My statements to that reporter were based on questions they asked me that obviously didn't appear in the story. I was asked specifically about what has changed since the Sandusky assaults that helps moving forward. The response I gave that you referenced was not a question about Lee specifically, rather a generic question about teacher assaults and the increase we are seeing in reporting."

I asked Mrs. Storm to further clarify the role the OVA plays in situations like these and what the OVA does to make sure ARD is not used improperly in situations like these and she told me

"I am working closely with District Attorney's office across the Commonwealth to educate on the impact of such decision on victims, families and the community. The OVA has traveled to over 35 of our 67 counties providing a 2 hour training on issues such as this and what our agency can do for crime victim since their offenders reach the state level, as that is where our legal rights begin for victims. I have attended and spoken at the DA's annual summer meeting and plan to continue doing so. Additionally, I take every opportunity presented to me to speak out about the impact on victims."
While I applaud Mrs. Storm for these efforts, and appreciate her willingness to converse with me on the topic, I am still not clear on how this education will stop alleged misbehavior on the part of DAs like Mr. Madeira. It seems more proper that there should be a change to the ARD law that would entirely prohibit it's use when there is a bodily victim specified, and Mrs. Storm should press for such a change with our lawmakers in my opinion. The power of the OVA would surely bring pressure to bear on lawmakers.

Conclusion: The Pattern Continues

When the Sandusky scandal broke and information began to emerge about what had gone wrong, stories coalesced mostly (by design for some) around how the Penn State Football program had "failed" to act morally. Major news outlets, without the staff and resources to invest finding out the real facts, ran with this story despite clear factual problems (i.e. the grand jury presentment "anal rape" lie).

As this narrative took off, it left truth behind. Many ran with the idea that we just HAD to improve reporting standards in PA, and that the big failure was that of reporting suspected abuse. Then the Jared Tutko Jr case emerged, another case where State officials had taken reports of abuse and yet failed the child. Now we have a case where law enforcement officials, and state agencies once again used questionable procedures, children were harmed, and the people who claim to be protecting them are failing at their jobs. The continued focus on new reporting laws after the Sandusky scandal entirely misses the point on all of these crimes. Sandusky was reported, Lee was reported, Jared Tutko Sr. was reported. The failure in many cases comes after abuse is reported, not from the lack of reporting. This is evidenced by a 2009 review of child safety in PA where 42.3% of cases were determined to not meet Outomce S1: Children are, first and foremost, protected from abuse and neglect.  The more evidence that is uncovered, the more it seems right to ask, is this by design or mistake? What is going on in Pennsylvania?

Stay tuned for more....

Friday, October 3, 2014

The CYS/DPW saga continues: Tutko and Sandusky cases highlight how state agencies fail, deflect blame.

The last 3 years have provided quite an education for me, and I am not speaking in the formal sense. What I have learned about is the state of the state agencies in Pennsylvania that are charged with protecting children; Children and Youth Serivces (CYS) and the Department of Public Welfare (DPW). The Jerry Sandusky scandal is the lens through which I began to view the story but it is becoming clear that that is only the tip of the proverbial iceberg. The point of this post is not to criticize individual caseworkers as I know they are tremendously overburdened as it is, but rather to critique how the system has failed overall and then tries to deflect from it's own inadequacies.

The spark of today's post is the recent update on the case of poor, young Jarrod Tutko Jr. If you aren't familiar yet, Jarrod is a 9 year old boy who was "found" dead at his home on 29 July, 2014. At that time Jarrod weighed in at 16.9 pounds, or barely 25% of the average weight of a nine year old boy (63 pounds). What was even more appalling was the fact that the boy apparently lay in his feces-covered room dead for at least 2 days before officials were notified by the family. The initial story was that due to the multiple special needs children in the household, the mother and father split duties and the father had not informed the mother out of fear, going on about his routine of pretending to feed the boy. Initially Jarrod Tutko Sr was the only person charged with a crime. It was also known at the time that Dauphin County CYS had performed an investigation in October of 2013 yet apparently did not do much about obvious signs of neglect and abuse.

Then this week the mother, Kimberly Tutko and her husband were both charged with homicide as we found out much more detail on the family and just how much information various state agencies had on the Tutkos. That would be enough to open an investigation by the state on the agencies' handling of the case. Records indicate that neighboring Schuylkill county had tried to remove children from Mrs. Tutko's care in 2002, that Kimberly Tutko's parental rights for four other children had been terminated due to abuse, and that NJ child welfare agencies had contacted DCCYS about the Tutkos in 2006. In fact, Jarrod Tutko Jr was "put on hold" at the hospital after his birth due to an ongoing investigation of the parents!

So here we are once again. We have another high profile case of child abuse where there seems to be a large amount of information and warning signs ignored by professionals in our state agencies. This ignorance cost children in PA. This is the criminal version of the movie Groundhog Day. We are back at the same spot we were with the Sandusky case. Over a period of more than a decade there were clear signs indicating Kimberly and Jarrod Tutko were unfit parents and yet despite a current complaint CYS left children in their care and one poor, defenseless, disabled child died. Another was a mere hours from death.

We also have a pattern in the response of our state agenices in how these cases get reported to the public. You can read extensively about how the PA OAG and others like PennLive have systematically buried the failures of the state agencies in the Sandusky case at the SMSS Freehdom Fighters site. Ray Blehar and others have done a fantastic job of demonstrating how some wanted to focus on Penn State to hide the culpability of CYS and DPW in the failures of stopping Sandusky. Some did it to deflect blame, like PA Governor Tom Corbett, while others did it for web clicks, like PennLive and ESPN.

In the case of the Tutkos, we can already see the beginning of such a plan taking shape again. Notice the headline of the news report focuses on the homicide charges (Yes these parents should be charged but that isn't the point). It isn't until 18 paragraphs into the story that you hear anything about the warning signs that were there over the last decade. The PennLive story on September 30 attempts to place blame on NJ officials, painting the picture of neglect on NJ officials for releasing Jarrod Jr back to the Tutkos twice (again NJ officials also should have to answer for their actions in this case as well).

However what is clear is that PA child welfare agencies were well aware of the danger the Tutko children faced, again with clear warning signs, during the 2013 investigation and yet apparently (we don't know much yet because no one is talking) did little to assure the safety of the children. Neighbors describe a peculiar family that was reclusive, a father who was violent, often hitting his children in clear view of others. They tell the tale of the older brother, Aaron, ribs visible he was so skinny, who preferred to remain out of the house at all costs.

Yet a Dauphin County CYS made a finding of no abuse on 30 December, 2013 and terminated the services to the Tutko family. You are not misreading that. In a case where untrained neighbors saw the father routinely violent with his children, professionals blew it off after claiming to be inside the house. A house that contained the room pictured below where Jarrod Jr died.

How does a state child welfare agency supposedly enter that house and not take action, save for a letter? It's incomprehensible to even a layperson. Either that agency didn't care for those children, or they never did a thorough investigation like they are supposed to. Both reasons are equally horrible.

The Jerry Sandusky case opened my eyes to the failures of my own state's agencies that are tasked with protecting children. Perhaps it was an outlier, a true perfect storm, perhaps Jerry Sandusky just was that good at concealing his activities? Or perhaps there is something more going on. The case of Jarrod Tutko Jr. has shown that it is the latter in my opinion. Our state agencies need to be held accountable just like the awful people who perpetrate these crimes. We need to demand answers of our officials, otherwise what are we paying them for?

This isn't about Penn State Football, nor NJ welfare agencies, nor Mr. and Mrs. Tutko. Like the Sandusky case people (Dr. Chambers, McQueary, Aaron Fisher) raised the red flags. Like the Sandusky case, those at CYS and DPW ignored them. The common core in all of these stories is that people who claim to want to protect children put them back in harms way even when there are obvious signs of abuse. It's time to demand more of our professionals.

Monday, September 8, 2014

Governor Corbett vindicates man he was instrumental in firing (Joe Paterno)

Last month I posted about how the NCAA vindicated Joe Paterno and PSU with it's new sexual assault policy. This last week came news that the man who was admittedly instrumental in having Joe Paterno fired, Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett, basically vindicated Paterno as well.

It has now been widely reported that during H. Geoffery Moulton's investigation of the Corbett OAG's handling of the Sandusky investigation, sexually explicit emails were found being sent among OAG staffers. While these emails have now been inexplicably put under seal by a grand jury judge, the Corbett administration has now made comments about them and they are telling. The first statement by Corbett campaign manager Mike Barley initially denied that Corbett had any knowledge of the emails. However since that time the administration has backtracked.

In a second statement to the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, Barley was forced to clarify that statement. Indeed, Barley stated, Corbett had been informed of the emails no later than the date of his interview with Mr. Moulton.

"To clarify, the governor did not have any discussions with Mr. Moulton during the official interview regarding this matter, after that interview concluded, Mr. Moulton told the governor that emails were uncovered during the investigation that may have been inappropriate."

This immediately brings up the question of what was done by the Governor when he was informed of these emails? Has his administration questioned any people? Have they reprimanded or punished anyone involved? Have they done anything? What type of material is there? Does any of it include the depiction of underage children? These are all valid and reasonable questions, especially in light of Governor Corbett's statements and actions after the release of the Sandusky indictment.

You may recall that Cynthia Baldwin stated on the record that Governor Corbett was more involved with his role on the PSU board than any other time as the Sandusky investigation came to a head. In fact the first board meeting he attended was the one during which Joe Paterno was fired. His staff had booked rooms in town eight days prior to the presentments release. Then during that board meeting on the evening of November 9th Corbett said:

"Remember that little boy in the shower" - Tom Corbett

By all accounts this was the last thing said before the 'vote' to fire Joe Paterno. Now if you recall Coach Paterno had stated multiple times that at no time were any specific details related to him about what Mike McQueary saw on the night of February 9th, 2001. In fact his Grand Jury testimony said:

"So I told — I didn’t go any further than that except I knew Mike was upset and I knew some kind of inappropriate action was being taken by Jerry Sandusky with a youngster." - Joe Paterno

So Joe Paterno was told of something inappropriate and immediately reported it to his superiors who he felt would handle the follow up, per PA law and PSU policy. Under that law and policy it would be inappropriate and in some way illegal for Paterno to further engage the investigation.

Flash forward to Barley 'clarifying' Governor Corbett's knowledge of the sexually explicit emails that were discovered in the Moulton investigation. Here is further comment by Barley:

"To be clear, the governor had no knowledge of these alleged emails while he was attorney general, nor has he ever seen them. (If) he would have known about any inappropriate emails being sent, he would have put a stop to that type of activity immediately, he would never condone that type of behavior, and if these reports are true, he will be very disappointed.”

This is essentially exactly the same reasoning Joe Paterno used. He was unaware of specific details about the allegation, reported it up the line, was never told Sandusky was abusing the boy, and would have definitely done more had he known that was the case. Yet in very similar circumstances what has Governor Corbett done in the months since? At this point we know of nothing. One thing is certain, when a politician backtracks like this on a 'denial' you can be sure there is more underneath that we don't know. That is why it is so disturbing that the emails have been put under seal.

To that all I have to say is this: Governor Corbett, remember the culture you allowed in your office.

Friday, September 5, 2014

Dear President Barron

Eric J. Barron
Penn State Office of the President
201 Old Main
University Park, PA 16802

Dear President Barron

Thank you for taking the time out of your busy day to write to the Penn State community. As a 3rd generation Penn Stater whose roots date back to 1928, I do hope that one thing you do more than any other in your tenure here is keep open honest lines of communication with all constituents in our great community. One thing that has surely been lacking in this crisis for PSU is strong leadership and good communication.

With that I do take exception to your letter regarding civility. From day one of this crisis the powerful few who control our beloved University (the Board's power bloc), have shown complete disregard for civility. Though I could come up with dozens of examples ("There are no do overs" - Ken Frazier), the single shining example of this was the firing of Penn State coaching legend Joseph Vincent Paterno via phone the evening of November 9, 2011.

Coach Paterno served this amazing university for 61 years with loyalty, love, dedication, hard work, excellence, and honor. As recently detailed by his son Jay, he often gave up being a normal father and husband to tend to Penn State. In what was his career's darkest hour, when he most needed the University he gave everything he had to to have his back, the record indicates that they turned their back on him. In the 4 days from when the Sandusky news broke until the moment of that fateful phone call the Board never once asked Joe Paterno his version of what happened. They never once gave him any chance to respond to the allegations, not facts, presented publicly. Instead after four days they simply sent one of his previous pupils to his door in the dark of night with a phone number and fired him with disgrace over the phone. After that they tried to claim they had not done what the world saw them do, claiming he had not been fired, but "retired early".

The leaders of our university sacrificed the man who spent 61 years building the institution they now use to further their careers for expediency and ease. Little did they know that would be their worst mistake. The man who taught us everything, how to do things the right way, Success With Honor, is a man that many of us will go to the ends of the earth to fight for. Our power brokers are learning that now. Despite their attempt to sweep all of this under the rug and "move forward", they will one day have to answer on record for their selfishness. They are being pulled into multiple lawsuits, and great people like Ryan Bagwell are demanding that records be made public. Coach Paterno's last dying wish was the truth, and many of us will not stop until that is seen.

So when you ask for civility you hold the power to help make this happen. The first step is an official apology to Sue Paterno and the Paterno family for how they have been treated in all of this. The second step is to stand up and fight for what is right and true. The stakes are high, as children in PA are still in grave danger as long as these truths are kept in the dark. I ask you to take the first step and have the University officially apologize to the Paterno family.

John G. Yonchuk III
B.S. Biology 1999
Life Member, Penn State Alumni Association