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Penn State Scandal: Campus President Ignores Child Molestation Charge

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By Christine Thomasos, Christian Post Reporter
November 16, 2011|3:32 pm

As Penn State’s former defensive coordinator and coach are under investigation for a sexual abuse scandal, a man is speaking up about being molested by a university professor 30 years ago.

Paul McLaughlin, the alleged abuse victim, presented evidence of his abuse to the University and was ignored. McLaughlin, who is now in his 40s, said he was molested from ages 11 to 15.

As part of his therapy, McLaughlin decided to confront now-retired Penn State professor John “Jack” Neisworth in 2001. He taped the telephone conversation with his alleged abuser, who is respected for his work in child development.

McLaughlin told ABC News about the taped conversation in which Neisworth admitted his acts.

"I was in the process of trying to get him to open up about some of the sexual acts and what not, and he actually interrupted me and said, 'Do you remember driving up on the hill?'" McLaughlin said. "I said, 'Wasn't that the first time you went down on me?' He said, 'I don't know if it was the first time but it was certainly fierce,' was his words."

Despite having taped admissions of the abuse as evidence, McLaughlin said Penn State refused to launch an investigation of the matter.

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"They didn't want copies of the tape recorded conversation. They didn't want to hear it, period," he said. "It was extremely emotional for me to have to make these calls to begin with, but then to be rejected the way I was and basically treated as if I had done something wrong in making those calls."

Two weeks before an investigation was launched in the Jerry Sandusky sexual abuse case, McLaughlin said he contacted now-defunct Penn State president Graham Spanier. The former president also ignored McLaughlin claims.

“"[Spanier] told me that as far as he was concerned it was hearsay, '[Neisworth] has an impeccable record. He has never been accused of anything,'" McLaughlin told ABC. "They were more interested in protecting the school. They didn't seem to have any interest in protecting children at all."

Although Neisworth was finally charged with multiple counts of child sexual abuse in 2005, the case was later dismissed due to a lack of evidence. In 2006, he reportedly settled with McLaughlin out of court.

However, the victim said he was not looking to extort the professor or the school despite what they thought.

"I didn't ask them for money. I didn't ask them for anything other than make sure they look into this,” McLaughlin said. “Listen to the tape and get this guy away from children."

 

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