Published: Tue, March 21, 2017
U.S. | By Monique Johnson

Jury Selection Starts in Spanier Trial

Jury Selection Starts in Spanier Trial

Former Penn State President Graham Spanier stood in a Dauphin County courtroom Monday afternoon to show himself to the most important crowd he is ever likely to face.

Those counts involve claims by state investigators that Spanier deliberately did not report allegations of child-sex crimes by former assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky to law enforcement in 2001. All told, he is up against two counts of endangering the welfare of children, and one count of conspiring to do so.

Spanier was later charged with a number of felonies but his more serious charges were dropped in 2016.

The trial, which according to Judge John Boccabella could last up to two weeks, will go over a time period of February 2001, when McQueary says he witnessed Sandusky in a Penn State locker room shower, to October 31, 2012. Spanier is charged over his response to the scandal but denies any wrongdoing.

A jury will have to decide what Graham Spanier knew and when he knew about abuse boys were suffering at the hands of Jerry Sandusky.

"The only downside for us is if the message isn't "heard" and acted upon, and we then become vulnerable for not having reported it", Spanier replied. We're told the judge wants the trial done this week. "But I never, ever heard anything about child abuse or sexual abuse or my antennae raised up enough to even suspect that". Schultz and Curley turned prosecution witness right after pleading guilty to child endangerment charges last week.

For much of the past six years, the three men have appeared to be solidly together.

Originally listed as co-conspirators with Spanier, Curley and Schultz are now expected to testify against their former colleague, according to a witness list announced during the jury selection process. McQueary won a $12 million verdict. Sentencing has not been scheduled.

The 68-year-old Spanier declined to comment as he entered the courthouse Monday in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.

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