Spanier's lawyers dispute Freeh report - abc27 WHTM

Spanier's lawyers dispute Freeh report


Attorneys for ousted Penn State President Graham Spanier called a news conference Wednesday in the "City of Brotherly Love," but showed none for Louis Freeh and his investigation into the university's handling of the Jerry Sandusky child sexual abuse scandal.

Spanier's attorneys called the Freeh Report a "myth" filled with "false facts."

Freeh's 267-page report last month concluded that Spanier and others concealed allegations Sandusky sexually abused a boy in the football building showers in 2001, but the former president's lawyers said their client knew only of "horseplay," not sexual misconduct or criminal rape.

"Had anything given to him even spoke of sexual abuse, sexual misconduct, or criminal misconduct, it would have been reported," attorney Jack Riley said.

Several of the 17 e-mails in Freeh's report indicated that Spanier was both a recipient and a sender. One e-mail indicated that Spanier agreed not to report the shower incident.

"He was copied on two e-mails, they weren't even directly addressed to him," attorney Tim Lewis said. "Right now, that is all I'm going to say. Dr. Spanier will be addressing some of these issues today."

When news media pressed on the e-mail issue, Spanier's lawyers ended the meeting.

A man claiming to be a victim from the 1970's interrupted the press conference and said, "I believe you guys." Whether the man was credible has not been determined.

However, Board of Trustee member Anthony Lubrano said he too believed Spanier's lawyers. Lubrano said only Penn State President Rodney Erickson accepted Freeh's findings as fact. He said the board has not discussed Freeh's findings.

"We've never sat down and said, OK what do you think? Does this seem reasonable, are these conclusions reasonable? We haven't done that," Lubrano said.

Spanier continues to be employed by Penn State University and has not been charged with any crime. His attorneys said they do not believe their client is currently under investigation.

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