Ex-Penn St leader asked to detail defamation claim
HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — The man who led Penn State’s internal probe into the Jerry Sandusky child sex abuse scandal demanded Tuesday that the school’s former president elaborate on claims that he was defamed during the investigation.
Ex-Penn State President Graham Spanier has sued former FBI director Louis Freeh, who led the school’s investigation, for defamation. Spanier sued in a one-page writ while seeking more time to file a full legal complaint, and he also wants his civil suit put on hold while he defends Sandusky-linked criminal charges.
However, lawyers for Freeh said the defamation charge is clouding their client’s reputation, and they object to a delay.
“Spanier has succeeded in garnering headlines for suing Judge Freeh without having to provide any substantiation,” they said in their motion Tuesday.
University trustees had hired Freeh to conduct an internal investigation into the school’s handling of complaints about Sandusky, the former assistant football coach since convicted of molesting boys on and off campus.
Freeh’s 2012 report concluded that Spanier, football coach Joe Paterno and other school officials failed to protect children from abuse.
Sandusky is now serving a 30- to 60-year prison term for sexually abuse. Spanier and two other university officials, former vice president Gary Schultz and former athletic direct Tim Curley, are awaiting trial on charges they took part in an alleged cover-up.
Paterno died of lung cancer early last year.