HARRISBURG (KDKA/AP) – A report released Monday detailing the handling of the Jerry Sandusky child molestation case faults police and prosecutors for long delays in bringing charges but found no evidence that politics affected the investigation.
The report, commissioned by Democratic Attorney General Kathleen Kane and written by former federal prosecutor Geoff Moulton, blamed a three-year time lapse in filing charges on communication problems, an expungement of a 1998 complaint about the former Penn State coach and a failure to take certain investigative steps early on.
“The facts show an inexcusable lack of urgency in charging and stopping a serial sexual predator,” said Kane, who had vowed to conduct a review of the investigation while running for office. “The report documents that more investigative work took place in just one month in 2011 than in all of either 2009 or 2010.”
Moulton said his review, including internal emails by state prosecutors, “revealed no direct evidence that electoral politics influenced any important decision made in the Sandusky investigation.”
Then-Attorney General Tom Corbett, a Republican, was in the midst of his successful 2010 gubernatorial campaign during the Sandusky investigation.
As a candidate in 2012, Kane said that Corbett may have had a political motive to slow down the investigation, an assertion Corbett has denied. The arrest of Sandusky led to the firing of longtime Penn State coach Joe Paterno while Corbett was serving as a university trustee; Penn State alumni and fans have objected to how Paterno was treated.
Corbett spokesman Jay Pagni said Monday that the investigation was conducted with the victims at the forefront.
“It was a thorough, thoughtful investigation, and in the end a child predator can no longer victimize anyone,” Pagni said.
Sandusky was convicted in 2012 of sexually abusing 10 boys and is serving decades in prison sentence.
Gov. Corbett joined Larry Richert and John Shumway on the KDKA Morning News to shortly before the official report was released.
“When I was attorney general I continued to push for a very thorough investigation,” adding “politics never played a role in (the investigation) what was in the best interest of the children of the Pennsylvania (is) what was foremost in my mind,” Corbett said.
Corbett acknowledges the criticism of those that said the investigation took too long.
“This is not a television program where everything gets wrapped up in an hour or a week of a parent investigation and 45 of 48 counts, I think, demonstrates what a successful prosecution it was,” Corbett said.
Asked if he feels relieved Corbett said, “When you know what the facts are from the very beginning, I’m not surprised that people are reporting what they’re reporting.”