Two high-ranking officials at Penn State, who are accused of lying about their knowledge of reported sexual abuse, have stepped down. The announcement this morning came from the university.
The university’s Senior Vice President for Finance and Business Gary Schultz, 62, and Penn State Athletic Director Timothy Curley, 57, both face charges of one count of perjury each.
The decision came after an emergency meeting with the Board of Trustees. University President Graham Spainer said of Curley and Schultz, “I have complete confidence in how they have handled the allegations about a former university employee.”
Jerry Sandusky, former defensive coordinator, is at the center of the controversy. He is charged with several counts of involuntary deviate sexual intercourse, corruption of minors, endangering the welfare of a child as well as indecent assault and unlawful contact with a child.
The charges stem from an incident that was reported in 2002. A graduate assistant saw Sandusky sexually assaulting a naked boy, thought to be about 10 years old, in a team locker room shower. The graduate assistant reported the incident to Joe Paterno, Penn State’s head football coach. Paterno then told Curley – who met with the graduate assistant about a week later.
"Despite a powerful eyewitness statement about the sexual assault of a child, this incident was not reported to any law enforcement or child protective agency, as required by Pennsylvania law," State Attorney General Linda Kelly said.
Schultz's lawyer, Thomas J. Farrell, told the Associated Press Sunday that the mandated reporting rules only apply to people who come into direct contact with children. He also said the statute of limitations for the summary offense with which Schultz is charged is two years, so it expired in 2004.
Sandusky allegedly engaged in fondling, oral and anal sex with young boys over a period of 10 years, according to the grand jury’s summary of testimony.
Paterno said that he was shocked to hear about the alleged crimes.
“If true, the nature and amount of charges made are very shocking to me and all Penn Staters,” he said in a statement.
“While I did what I was supposed to with the one charge brought to my attention, like anyone else involved I can't help but be deeply saddened these matters are alleged to have occurred,” Paterno added.