Paterno family to launch its own probe of Penn State scandal

Signs and flowers are seen at the statue of the late Penn State football coach Joe Paterno, before the annual Spring football scrimmage in April.

The family of Joe Paterno, angered by a report critical of the late Penn State head coach, said on Monday it will conduct its own probe of the child sex abuse scandal surrounding Paterno’s assistant that has stained the football legend’s legacy.

Family members said they “are dismayed by, and vehemently disagree with” findings in the report by former FBI Director Louis Freeh that accused Paterno and other Pennsylvania State University officials of failing to take steps for 14 years to protect the children victimized by assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky.

Freeh, in the report commissioned by the Penn State board of trustees, blamed them for conducting a cover-up to avoid consequences of bad publicity that could upset donors and damage the Penn State brand.

Sandusky, 68, was convicted last month of sexually abusing 10 boys over 15 years and faces up to 373 years in prison.

The Paterno family said it has asked its attorneys and experts to conduct a comprehensive review of Freeh’s report and comments, and “we have also asked them to go beyond the report and identify additional information that should be analyzed.”

They said they asked Freeh to preserve all his records, notes and other materials “as we expect they will be the subject of great interest in the future.”

“To those who are convinced that the Freeh report is the last word on this matter, that is absolutely not the case,” the family said. “It is highly likely that additional critical information will emerge.”

Paterno’s estate could be sued for damages by victims of Sandusky’s abuse, according to legal experts.

The scandal rocked the world of college sports with Sandusky’s arrest in November, and Freeh’s report underscored what it called callous disregard and inaction by Penn State officials. It said they had known about allegations against Sandusky since 1998, when university police investigated a complaint of abuse but let him off with a warning.

There are calls for Penn State’s highly regarded football program to be penalized and for the taking down of a campus statue of Paterno, who won more games than any coach in major college football history.

A university spokesman said on Monday that neither the board of trustees nor the Penn State administration had made a decision on the statue.

Paterno was fired by the board in November and died in January of lung cancer.

“To claim that he knowingly, intentionally protected a pedophile is false,” his family said in the statement.

The Freeh report said emails exchanged in 1998 and 2001 showed school officials discussed reporting allegations about Sandusky to authorities. After speaking to Paterno, “they changed the plan and decided not to make a report,” Freeh said.

The Paterno family said it did not intend to duplicate Freeh’s efforts and would not make further comments until its attorneys have an update on the progress of their investigation.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

Actor Tracy Morgan wasn't wearing seatbelt in June…

By Jonathan Stempel(Reuters) - Actor and comedian Tracy Morgan and others in his limousine were not wearing seat belts when their vehicle was struck by…

National

Connected cars: Is AT&T leaving Verizon in its…

By Marina Lopes and Bernie WoodallWASHINGTON/DETROIT (Reuters) - Verizon Communications, the No.1 U.S. wireless carrier known for its widespread coverage, is falling behind its biggest…

Local

Grand jury begins hearing evidence in Eric Garner…

A grand jury began hearing evidence Monday relating to the death of Eric Garner while in police custody in July. Garner, 43, of Staten Island,…

Local

Mayor announces plan for solar panels at city…

Mayor Bill de Blasio announced the planned installation of 24 new solar panels at city schools on Monday morning. The panels, a $28 million investment,…

Going Out

Taste what Lower Manhattan is cooking at today's…

The Lower Manhattan food scene has changed a lot in three years, which you can taste first hand when the neighborhood's food festival returns. On…

Television

Review: 'Selfie' tries to coast on the charm…

"Selfie" offers cute leads and some good jokes, but focuses too much on a vague distaste for social media.

Movies

Review: Jason Reitman's 'Men, Women & Children' is…

Jason Reitman's "Men, Women & Children" takes a hysterical and melodramatic look at disconnection in the digital age, turning strong actors into zombies.

Television

TV watch list, Monday, Sept. 29: 'Castle,' 'Mom'…

Tune in for the season premieres of "Castle," "Mom" and "NCIS: Los Angeles."

NFL

Ryan Quigley making a big impact for Jets…

Ryan Quigley, now in his second year as the Jets punter, had an exceptional afternoon with six punts for an average of 51.7 yards per punt.

NFL

3 positives to take from Jets loss to…

The Jets suffered another loss Sunday — 24-17 to the Lions — but the reason why it hurts so much for Jets fans is that…

MLB

Joe Girardi not confident David Robertson will return…

David Robertson was as seamless as anyone could be replacing Mariano Rivera as he converted 39 saves, with a 3.08 ERA and 96 strikeouts in 64 1/3 innings.

NBA

Carmelo Anthony preaches patience with new coach, offense

While star forward Carmelo Anthony said he’s “enthusiastic” and “optimistic” for the upcoming season, he still wants everyone — from within the locker room and…

Education

How to ace your private school interview

Getting ready for a private school interview can be daunting for many, most of whom might never have been in an interview situation before. We’ve…

Education

5 questions parents should ask while visiting private…

It can be hard to know what to look for when searching for a new school for your child. Parents considering several different schools can…

Education

3 ways to save money on college application…

With the average high school student applying to 5 or 6 schools, hefty application and test score fees can add up quickly. We’ve compiled some…

Education

Nap rooms: The latest college campus trend

College is a time filled with new experiences (and lots of schoolwork), leaving little time for students to get a good night’s rest. University of…