One week after Jerry Sandusky was arrested on 40 counts of child sex abuse charges, the CEO of The Second Mile, Jack Raykovitz resigned from his post. Raykovitz is not suspected of any wrongdoing (that we know of) but his behavior is considered suspect.
As I have previously mentioned, Raykovitz told the grand jury that he was informed that Sandusky had been observed showering with a boy (from The Second Mile) in 2002. Raykovitz did nothing. It appears (at this point) that he never asked any questions nor identified the child to discuss the incident with him (if he had, he might have learned that the boy may have been raped, according to grad student Mike McQueary, who witnessed the incident).
Raykovitz also did not limit Sandusky’s access to children until 2008 (so he claims), when Sandusky confided in him that he was being investigated. Nothing suspicious there, right? I mean, a 58-year-old guy showering with a 10-year-old after working out is normal. In Happy Valley it is.
Of course, at this point, there is so much information and so much dishonesty and secrecy, it’s difficult to know who to believe and what to believe. After all, Raykovitz asserted to both the Sandusky grand jury and in a public statement that Penn State University Athletic Director Tim Curley only disclosed “that an individual had reported to Mr. Curley that he was uncomfortable about seeing Jerry Sandusky in the locker room shower with a youth.”
This claim, without question, warrants more digging. If Raykovitz is telling the truth, then that means Curley grossly misrepresented the facts to Raykovitz. Why would he do that? Of course, Curley probably couldn’t tell Raykovitz that someone had seen Sandusky rape a child but why would he water it down so much, if that actually was the substance of the statement? That dog just don’t hunt.
And, given that Penn State officials had “solved” the Sandusky problem by taking his locker room keys as well as handing down that unenforceable edict that he no longer bring children onto campus, did he fail to mention those sanctions to Raykovitz? That would be odd, to say the least.
It’s not outside the realm of possibility to suggest that some of the people at The Second Mile and Penn State may have been well acquainted. We know one guy definitely was: attorney Wendell Courtney. He was the legal counsel for BOTH Penn State and The Second Mile at the time of the 1998 incident and the 2002 incident. Odd again. Who did he tell, and what did he tell them? That’s surely going to be addressed.
Have I mentioned that Raykovitz is a licensed psychologist and certified school psychologist?
I’ll let that sink in.
If Raykovitz learned of suspected sexual abuse of a child, I think he has to report that to authorities. He never did. Not only does it appear that he failed to do that, he reportedly never looked into it, which is beyond peculiar, given that he ran an organization for troubled youth.
Maybe he’s never seen SVU, so he doesn’t know that child molesters tend to operate just like Jerry Sandusky did. Did he not know that Sandusky had special relationships with some of the kids, who traveled with him, spent the night at his house, and so on? Or that he showered them with gifts like a computer, golf clubs, clothes, and whatnot? Sandusky never hid this stuff, it appears. He did everything in a bold, brazen manner.
He was not secretive or covert, so why didn’t anyone — especially someone who is trained in psychology — put two and two together and stop this guy? There’s no way you can make me believe that they’re all just stupid or bad at their jobs or just blinded by Sandusky’s personality. No way. Especially since we now know that this didn’t blindside everyone.
Speaking of The Second Mile, the judge who granted Jerry Sandusky’s unsecured $100,000 bail and no home monitoring (against the wishes of prosecutors) just so happens to be connected to the organization. Judge Leslie Dutchcot’s biography on a law firm website lists her as a volunteer for The Second Mile. Sound like a conflict of interest? Possibly.
However, this has become publicized because it was reported by the media, not because Dutchcot disclosed it in court. That makes it a little stranger. It is unknown yet how deeply she is affiliated with the group, although it has been reported that she made a donation to The Second Mile in 2009.
NBC discovered that it had interviewed the now-infamous Jerry Sandusky back in 1987. You can believe they rolled out the video first thing Monday morning to make everyone gag. Hang on to your cookies:
Isn’t that just delightful? In hindsight (not Joe Paterno hindsight, mind you, real-world hindsight), it seems more and more like he would take every opportunity to employ double-speak. Or, maybe people who are suspected of being pedophiles simply talk this way naturally. I’m not sure. I’m not a suspected pedophile, so I can’t speak to the way their brains work. But this made me somewhat nauseous:
“…sometimes they don’t want it, they don’t understand what you’re trying to do, but they wanna be disciplined.”
Ick. I feel dirty.
He also dropped the word “trust” and mentioned something about “trying to be a true friend.” Is it me, or does this sound like it’s right out of a script for SVU? I mean, seriously. It’s so textbook, as far as predatory behavior goes, that it seems completely impossible that people didn’t know. Oh, that’s right. They did. In fact, maybe the investigation should just focus on finding out who didn’t know.
I think one of the remarks that is most telling is this one: “How did it all start? Basically because I’m a frustrated playground director, I guess.”
Take a minute to let that sink in as well.
I’m not sure what to tackle first; “frustrated” or “playground director.” Let’s go with the latter. A playground director, huh? I’ve watched enough SVU to know that pedophiles often put themselves in positions where they have access to children, like an athletic coach (which he did, at an alleged victim’s high school) or a Boy Scout leader. But playground director? That’s creepy.
He was 44 in that interview. When was he a playground director? What the hell is a playground director anyway? And, “frustrated”? Why is he “frustrated”? Over what is he frustrated? It’s his clever little joke, apparently. Regardless, with my normal person hindsight, it makes my skin crawl. Read on.
Jack McCallum of Sports Illustrated wrote a puff piece on Jerry Sandusky when he retired in 1999. And when I say “puff piece,” I mean to tell you that this article just might make you gag. Here are some highlights (seriously, try not to gag):
If Sandusky did not have such a human side, there would be a temptation around Happy Valley to canonize him: Saint Sandusky, leader of linebackers, molder of men.
Because Sandusky is so respected, as a man and as the dean of Linebacker U, there’s the impression that it’s just fine with him that he has never been a head coach. It’s not. “I wouldn’t call it devastating,” says Sandusky, choosing his words carefully, “but I would call it a little disappointing. That was definitely a goal of mine when I started. If I hadn’t had the other part of my life—my family and the Second Mile—I would’ve been a head coach.”
Working under Paterno takes something out of a man, too. Sandusky was asked last week if he’ll miss Joe Pa. “Well, not exactly,” he said. “You have to understand that so much of our time was spent under stress, figuring out how to win. That takes a toll. We’ve had our battles. I’ve quit. I’ve been fired. I’ve walked around the building to cool off.” Paterno says, “I’m not the easiest guy to work with.” (ESPN analyst Matt) Millen puts it another way: “Figuratively speaking, that Paterno nose is everywhere.” (Editor’s note: More on this later…trust me!)
[A]t heart, E.J. (Sandusky’s adopted son) says, Sandusky is “a frustrated playground director.” E.J. remembers the kickball games his father organized in the backyard. “Dad would get every single kid involved,” says E.J. “We had the largest kickball games in the United States, kickball games with 40 kids.”
Says Millen, “A lot of people were surprised when Jerry said he was retiring. Me? I was surprised he stayed that long. Jerry has so many passions and so many gifts besides coaching football—a gift for teaching, a gift for helping, a gift for guiding kids. This is a man with a lot to do.”
Here’s the best thing you can say about Jerry Sandusky: He’s the main reason that Penn State is Linebacker U…and linebackers aren’t even his enduring legacy.
Canonize him? Seriously, Jack McCallum? That’s going a bit far. Molder of men. Priceless.
Let’s touch on Matt Millen’s remark that Joe Paterno’s nose is “everywhere.” Ahhh. That’s my favorite. Why? Well, because in the new version of Penn State history, Joe Paterno is just another employee. He follows rules, he’s not in the loop, he has no clue what’s going on…because, after all, a devout Catholic and “great man” wouldn’t — couldn’t — know about Jerry Sandusky’s dirty secret and do nothing.
Let’s take it a step further. Joe Paterno wouldn’t tolerate some pedophilic monster being part of his program, right? Right? I mean, we have to believe that or else…Joe Paterno is something of a monster himself. And, God knows, that can’t be the case.
If you read through the stories carefully, though, you learn that Joe Paterno wasn’t just another employee. He was making more than$1 million a year as a coach, making him the highest paid individual at Penn State University. He made more money than (now former) university president Graham Spanier, who at roughly $800,000, was among the highest paid presidents in the country. When Penn State pushed for him to retire, he refused. Refused. There’s a statue of Paterno on campus. He’s still alive.
On Saturday, a photographer snapped a photo of two grown men kneeling in reverence in front of Joe Paterno’s home. Joe Paterno plays by his own rules, clearly…and the “cult of JoePa” made that possible and acceptable. And that’s not even touching on the fact that, by most accounts, Paterno was extremely involved in everything. This is a very telling remark about Paterno’s power and influence at Penn State: “If a rock was thrown in State College, he knew about it before it landed.”
Can you just imagine the reaction if it turns out that there was a widespread cover-up of Sandusky’s crimes to keep Penn State’s image and reputation intact…and that Joe Paterno was involved? Good gravy. There might be mass suicides in Happy Valley. Seriously, these people are fanatical. I mean, look above. They’re kneeling. In front of Joe Paterno’s house. Kneeling. I still can’t wrap my head around this kind of hero worship.
But, let’s get back to Jerry Sandusky. As it turns out, Sandusky’s house borders a playground and an elementary school. As in, a fence is all that separates the playground from the Sandusky’s back patio. Could I make this up? I don’t think so. Only adding to the creepy factor is the sticker on the garage door that reads, “Be still and know that I am God.”
Of all the religious stickers you could possibly choose…that’s the one on his garage? Coincidence? Maybe. Then again…