Friday, July 14

Bagwell Docs Confirm 2nd Mile Deceptions

Documents confirm The Second Mile leaders lied to members and kept them – and the public -- in the dark about Sandusky’s abuse allegations.

By 
Ray Blehar

July 14, 2017, 9:01 AM EDT. Updated 12:42 PM on July 14, 2017.

A limited and heavily redacted trove of documents obtained by PSU alumnus Ryan Bagwell confirmed  that leaders of The Second Mile (TSM) charity kept board members and others in the dark about Jerry Sandusky.

Bagwell’s documents, obtained via FOIA requests of the United States Department of Justice (USDOJ), include interviews with two apparent PSU employees and six other individuals associated with TSM.   Two of the TSM interviews are so heavily redacted that they are unintelligible.   As a result, there are four usable interviews from TSM associated persons

Those interviews confirm that TSM’s leadership:

- Did not disclose the 2008 allegations were sexual in nature;

- Stated that the 2008 allegation did not involve a TSM child;

- Did not disclose the 2001 abuse allegations about Sandusky until after the November presentment was released;

- Deceived members about Sandusky’s post-2009 role at the charity; and

- Endangered the welfare of children – a criminal offense.

Not Sexual In Nature
The charity told three of the four individuals that the 2008 allegations were not sexual in nature and that it involved a complaint from a disgruntled mother and/or disgruntled child.

According to the Sandusky trial transcripts, the 2008 accuser, Aaron Fisher, initially reported on November 20, 2008, that he had been in bed with Sandusky on numerous occasions and had (sexual) contact over clothes for a three year period.  This information was documented in Clinton County CYS’s intake report.  CYS caseworker Jessica Dershem confirmed, at the trial, that Fisher estimated 30 incidents of contact over clothing at various hotels.

According to the Moulton Report, on November 20, 2008, Clinton County Children and Youth Services Director, Gerald Rosamilia contacted TSM to inform it of sexual abuse allegations against a charity member.   Then TSM Vice-President for Development, Katherine Genovese, correctly guessed it was Sandusky.    According to various press reports, Genovese related that the charity had to tell him to “back off certain kids before” and that he had gotten “too close” to children.

Based on the evidence, it is clear that charity leaders were dishonest about the sexual nature of the 2008 allegation against Sandusky.



Not A TSM Child
Universally, the interviewees associated with TSM stated charity officials denied that a TSM child was involved in the 2008 allegations against Sandusky.

Obviously, that was a lie. 

Aaron Fisher, the victim who reported Sandusky in 2008 had been a member of TSM since he was 8.   Around the time of Fisher’s abuse report, Sandusky had been haranguing him about helping with TSM’s golf tournament.

TSM issued a public statement in March and Dr. Jack Raykovitz penned an op-ed in April 2011 that led the public to believe that the Sandusky investigation did not involve the charity or its programs and that there had never been any prior abuse allegations.

 Raykovitz penned an  Op-Ed regarding TSM's non-involvement in Sandusky matter.


2001 Allegations

Three of the four individuals remarked that they were “shocked” and/or “surprised” to learn of the 1998 and 2001 allegations against Sandusky when the various news stories broke.

In April 2011, after the Patriot News broke the story of the Sandusky grand jury,
charity leaders told the other board members that the grand jury investigation would be discussed privately and communicated later.  

When the grand jury presentment was leaked, causing a media firestorm, the interviewees mentioned being shocked to learn about the 2001 incident.   One of the interviewees added that at the November 13, 2011 board meeting, 4 or 5 board members were angry that they weren’t notified contemporaneously.

Another interviewee, who understood the expungement requirements for unfounded child abuse reports, added that “all of this could have been avoided” if the 1998 and 2001 incidents were reported – presumably to the TSM Board of Directors.


Sandusky’s Resignation and Retirement

Three of the four also had conflicting information regarding Sandusky’s role with the charity after 2009. 

One interviewee recalled attending the fall of 2009 meeting when Sandusky announced he was resigning due to “family matters.”  However, two of the others believed that Sandusky was part of the charity until he “retired” in 2010.

IRS records reveal that the charity last paid Sandusky for his “consulting” work for the year ending August 31, 2008 and that he was no longer listed as a director for the year ending August 31, 2009.  He was not paid or listed as a director after the year ending August 31, 2009. 

When Sandusky “retired” in 2010, the publicity surrounding the news was that he wanted to spend more time with his family.

From the September 17, 2010, Altoona Mirror:

In a letter addressed to friends of the organization, Sandusky said he is retiring from his day-to-day involvement from the organization he founded in 1977 to help Pennsylvania children develop self-esteem and reach their full potential.
Sandusky said he was doing so "to devote more time to my family and personal matters."

Sandusky’s 2010 retirement came as a surprise to two interviewees.



Endangering Children

While Sandusky was an unpaid volunteer starting in 2009, the charity kept his status under wraps and let the public, donors, employees, and some board members continue to believe that he was fully part of the charity.  One interviewee recalled the first he was informed of Sandusky’s abuse allegations was when he learned that Sandusky lost his ChildLine clearance in late 2009 – after he dropped his appeal.

At that point, Sandusky should have been excluded from all charity activities and not allowed any contact with children.

The interviewee also recalled Sandusky’s fall 2009 resignation and that the argument surrounding Sandusky’s status with the charity was “heated.”  Some argued that all ties should be severed, while others recommended Sandusky be kept on for fundraising purposes.

The “executive committee” of TSM recommended communicating the abuse allegations against Sandusky to the regional offices in order to “protect the kids,” but according to the interviewee, the TSM State Board of Directors quashed the idea

Note that in November 2009, The State Board of Directors included Senator Jake Corman, former PSU Board of Trustees member and fundraising expert, Cliff Benson, Bruce Heim, Robert Poole, and Dr. Jack Raykovitz (who all knew of the 2001 allegations), and several other big corporate donors.

One of the corporate donors, Louie Sheetz, stated:

"I know the people who run the golf outing said, 'He's a big reason why people come -- to see him.' That makes sense, in my opinion. That's not involved in programming,"

As reported by notpsu.blogspot.com on May 31, 2017, Sandusky continued to contact children after the 2009 decision that he would exclusively be a fundraiser and not be involved in programming. 

In summary, the evidence reveals a course of conduct – a felony -- by charity officials’ decisions in 2001 and 2009 to allow Sandusky’s continued access to children.


Why the USDOJ in Harrisburg decided not to prosecute the charity for Endangering the Welfare of Children remains unknown, however it appears that Pennsylvania politics played into that decision.

9 comments:

  1. Politics in Pennsylvania legal process shocked I tell you


    ReplyDelete
  2. So Ray, is it safe to say that The Second Mile deceived not only the public and Penn State about Sandusky allegations, but also the federal government? Maybe this is why Ralph Cipriano reports in his "Big nothing Burger" article that Agent John Snedden reviewed federal documents and saw nothing that would indicate sexual abuse allegations against Sandusky?

    And I wonder, how many of these corrupt clowns under Tom Corbett, were willing participants in this felony deception? I know one thing, the current clowns, Governor Wolf, Josh Shapiro, Laura Ditka, and Judge Boccabella better come clean before they end up in federal prison.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Truthseeker,
      What Mr. Snedden should have stated was that the documents revealed none of those interviewed by the Feds WERE TOLD anything about Sandusky's abuse (by the TSM officials who were aware of it).

      To make a blanket statement that no one at the charity knew anything is utter nonsense. Certainly, it is well established that Raykovitz, Heim, and Poole all knew about the 2001 incident and that they were there when the 2008/2009 decision got made.

      Mr. Snedden, however, got it right a while back when he said the Spanier prosecution was a political hit job.


      Two USDOJ officials informed me (in 2013) that charges were pending. Later, one of those Feds called it the "Cars for Kids" scandal.

      Sandusky's PCRA confirmed that the Feds knew about Raykovitz's used car transaction, in which he took $1800 or so of money out of TSM's account and gave it to A.M., who then turned around and bought Raykovitz's used Toyota Camry.

      I have no idea what was behind the Feds change of charging the case, but I agree with Snedden that a political hit job occurred and that part of the deal was not to touch TSM.

      Finally, no one is going to come clean until they absolutely have to. In other words, once one domino in the chain falls, they will start to give up other people to save their own backsides.

      Delete
    2. Thanks Ray, for your incredible dedication and continuous effort in exposing this very tangled web of corruption.

      If you had to guess, who would be the most likely "domino" to fall first and set off the chain? I tend to think Bruce Beemer, if questioned by Feds, might have to give up the reasons, and the source of his orders to begin wiping out Second Mile documents on the government computers.

      Delete
    3. Truthseeker,
      I think you have to start a lot lower on the food chain -- like a witness who was threatened with prosecution/jail time unless he/she lied under oath.

      Take your pick. There are quite a few of those.

      Delete
  3. Not too shocking with all the crooked PA prosecutors. Child endangerment charges for Second Mile officials are apparently now beyond the statute of limitations.

    I still think they could charge Jack Raykovitz with perjury for his contradictory testimony at the Spanier trial.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Tim,
      Hopefully, Spanier's legal team will raise those false/contradictory statements on appeal.

      I also hope they will raise Ms. Ditka's false statements during closing in the appeal as well.

      Delete
    2. If Raycovitz committed perjury, it was suborned by the OAG. It is the responsibilty of the defense to pick apart the testimony of the prosecutor's witnesses. Spanier's attorney never learned that in Law School. Amazing that he even passed the Bar Exam. He could have picked McQuerry and V5 clean like a vulture on roadkill, but chose to throw Spanier to the hyenas.

      Delete
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    ReplyDelete