Freeh Report is Out
I can only imagine how many people bookmarked the link to the Freeh Report site and went there at 9 this morning, constantly hitting “refresh” on their browser until the report finally showed up. I know I was one, and so were lots of my coworkers, not to mention countless alumni, the news media, and the general public.
The site is having a little trouble keeping up with the traffic, but there’s also a link to it at the USA Today site (thanks to Kate Dailey ’02 for pointing that out).
The report is 267 pages long; it’s the result of an investigation led by former FBI director Louis Freeh, an investigation that involved conducting more than 430 interviews and analyzing more than 3.5 million emails and other documents. It will take some time for everyone—the Penn State administration, trustees, the news media, and all the rest of us—to read and digest its contents.
If you don’t want to download the full report, the Freeh site also includes a seven-page set of remarks providing an overview of the findings. They aren’t pretty. Here are some excerpts from the release:
—”Our most saddening and sobering finding is the total disregard for the safety and welfare of Sandusky’s child victims by the most senior leaders at Penn State. The most powerful men at Penn State failed to take any steps for 14 years to protect the children who Sandusky victimized. Messrs. Spanier, Schultz, Paterno and Curley never demonstrated, through actions or words, any concern for the safety and well-being of Sandusky’s victims until after Sandusky’s arrest.”
—”Taking into account the available witness statements and evidence, it is … reasonable to conclude that, in order to avoid the consequences of bad publicity, the most powerful leaders at Penn State University – Messrs. Spanier, Schultz, Paterno and Curley – repeatedly concealed critical facts relating to Sandusky’s child abuse from the authorities, the Board of Trustees, Penn State community, and the public at large. Although concern to treat the child abuser humanely was expressly stated, no such sentiments were ever expressed by them for Sandusky’s victims.”
The report also offers Penn State 119 recommendations. “The goal,” according to Freeh’s statement, “should be to create a more open and compliant culture, which protects children and not adults who abuse them.”
We’ll hear more from Louis Freeh at a news conference at 10 a.m. Eastern today, and the university will hold a news conference at 3:30 this afternoon. Penn State’s reactions will also be available at live.psu.edu and at progress.psu.edu.
Tina Hay, editor