‘Penn State 3’ admins argue to drop charges in Sandusky scandal

HARRISBURG, Pa. -- Attorneys for the trio of former Penn State administrators charged for their role in the Jerry Sandusky child sex abuse scandal returned to Dauphin County court on Thursday, hoping to dismiss the rest of the charges facing their clients.

Former Penn State President Graham Spanier, former athletic director Tim Curley, and Gary Schultz, the former head of campus police, are still facing charges of endangering the welfare of children and failure to report suspected abuse, as it relates to their handling of complaints in 2001 regarding Sandusky.

All three defendants were at the Dauphin County Courthouse for Thursday's pretrial hearing.

The trio's attorneys say while their clients were told in 2001, after former graduate assistant Mike McQueary claims to have seen Sandusky sexually abusing a young boy, they did not have a legal duty to report the alleged abuse because there is no evidence that the three were responsible or came in contact with children on campus.

Furthermore, according to Elizabeth Ainslie, head attorney for Dr. Spanier, the statute of limitations to prosecute the trio ran out in 2003, two years after they were initially told.

"Far too much time has gone by and the law prohibits prosecutions more than two years after the event," Ainslie told reporters after the proceedings. "The (state) legislature has decided it is unjust to try anybody that long after the given fact."

Prosecutors maintain their failure to properly report Sandusky gave the former coach the ability to further sexually abuse boys on campus, including so-called Victims 1, 5, and 9.

"Penn State athletic facilities turned into a breeding ground for Jerry Sandusky's sexual molestations...day after day," argued Deputy Attorney General Patrick Shulte.

Sandusky was allowed on campus until the day he arrested, November 5, 2011. Sandusky was also reportedly at Beaver Stadium one week earlier when former head football coach Joe Paterno won his 409th -- and final -- game.

Laura Ditka, Chief Deputy in Attorney General's Bruce Beemer's office, argued Spanier, Curley, and Schultz all knew of Sandusky's alleged abuse as early as 1998.

"They knew there was a predator in their midst and chose not to do anything. They continued to allow Jerry Sandusky to bring children to football games. Every time a Second Mile child was on the sidelines, they continued that conduct," Ditka told the court.

Judge John Boccabella of Berks County, who is specially presiding since the death of Judge Todd Hoover over the summer, did not make any rulings.

Sandusky was convicted in 2012 of sexually abusing 10 boys and was sentenced to 30-to-60 years in prison. He is appealing the conviction.