CNN: Paterno knew of abuse before 2001

UNIVERSITY PARK — A story published by CNN on Saturday suggested Joe Paterno knew that Jerry Sandusky might have been sexually abusing children even before the former Penn State football coach found out about a 2001 shower incident.

According to the CNN story, when Mike McQueary told Paterno about catching Sandusky in a shower with a young boy in 2001, it “was the second complaint of this nature (Paterno) had received,” regarding Sandusky, according to a police report.

That information had never been made public until the CNN report, despite the fact that it was contained in a police report shortly after Sandusky was first arrested in 2011.

McQueary, a former Penn State assistant coach, met with Paterno at his house on a Saturday morning in 2001 to tell him about the shower incident.

The following two paragraphs are an excerpt from the CNN story, written by Sara Ganim, who covered the case closely at the time:

“Paterno, upon hearing the news, sat back in his chair with a dejected look on his face,” the report states, adding that McQueary “said Paterno’s eyes appeared to well up with tears.”

“Then he made the comment to McQueary this was the second complaint of this nature he had received about Sandusky,” the report states, citing McQueary’s recollection.

The CNN story went on to report that McQueary told that information to police during an interview on Nov. 23, 2011, two weeks after Sandusky had been arrested.

Paterno testified before the grand jury that he had not heard of any abuse incidents regarding Sandusky prior to the 2001 shower incident. The police report information indicates differently, according to CNN’s reporting.