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Baldwin says Spanier Lied to Her

by on December 19, 2013 6:35 AM

Before a grand jury investigating the Jerry Sandusky child abuse scandal, former Penn State Counsel Cynthia Baldwin called former Penn State President Graham Spanier dishonest.

An Oct. 26, 2012 transcript of Baldwin's grand jury testimony offers potential evidence in the alleged cover-up of the sexual abuse that occurred on campus at the hands of Sandusky, a former Penn State football coach.

Dauphin County President Judge Todd Hoover unsealed the transcript Monday. Hoover is presiding over the criminal case for Spanier, former Athletic Director Tim Curley and retired Senior Vice President for Finance Gary Schultz.

During her testimony, Baldwin said she would describe her perception of Spanier through the Sandusky investigation as dishonest.

"He is not a person of integrity. He lied to me," she said.

Earlier in the hearing, she said, "The fact is that I always called Graham the supreme rationalist because Graham is a very bright man. He knows he's a very bright man. He believes that once he explains something to somebody and he tells them they believe it and that is it."

Baldwin was the university's first internal general counsel. She started at the university in 2010. Upon hire, Baldwin said Spanier never informed her of previous police investigations regarding Sandusky in 1998 and 2001.

Instead, Baldwin said she only learned of Sandusky's past in December of 2010 when she received a phone call from the attorney general's office announcing a grand jury was investigating Sandusky. At that point, Baldwin learned subpoenas to testify were issued for Curley, Schultz and head football coach Joe Paterno.

A subpoena was also issued to the university for any and all print and electronic documents related to Sandusky.

Following the subpoena, Baldwin said she notified all necessary university employees of the request for documents, including Spanier, Curley and Schultz. All three, she said, told her they did not have any related documents.

The alleged denial of related documents goes against what authorities uncovered, including emails and a file in Schultz's office related to Sandusky. The file included documents related to Sandusky's employment, retirement and the 1998 and 2001 police investigations related to sexual abuse.

 Frank Fina, a prosecutor with the attorney general's office, asked Baldwin if Schultz ever told her about the Sandusky file.

"Never. He told me he didn't have anything," Baldwin said.

Baldwin also said Spanier failed at his obligation to keep the board of trustees informed during the grand jury investigation.

Additionally, Baldwin refuted Spanier's claim in media interviews that he knew very little about what was then alleged abuse and prior police investigations.

"Of course he knew. There is no doubt that he knew what I knew. What I knew was what was in the (newspaper) and what had happened on campus, so the 1998 (incident) and the 2001 (incident), the story that was in the paper in Clinton County," Baldwin said.

Additionally, Baldwin testified that she always believed she was representing the university, not individual university employees.

"There was no doubt that I was representing the Pennsylvania State University and because they were agents of the university, I mean very high officials, that I would yes, that he (Spanier) said you will go with them (Curley and Schultz)," Baldwin said. "My expectation of my job was to keep Graham Spanier aware because he was not only the president he was a board member ... and his expectation was that I would tell him everything that was going on."

In question is Baldwin's role in the case and whether her grand jury testimony violated attorney-client confidentiality as Curley and Schultz say they believed she was representing them through the Sandusky investigation.

Transcripts also unsealed this week related to a meeting between Judge Barry, Fina, Baldwin’s attorney, Charles DeMonaco, and the university’s attorney, Michael Mustokoff. The group met in the judge’s chambers on Oct. 22, 2012, to discuss concerns raised regarding Baldwin’s pending grand jury testimony.

Fina said Baldwin was able to testify before the grand jury under a waiver to some aspects of attorney-client privilege. Specifically, he said Baldwin could talk about issues related to Sandusky, his relationship with the university and any of his conduct known to the university.

"And it extended to the contacts between the university and this grand jury and investigators, again, looking into Gerald Sandusky, his personal conduct – any alleged misconduct and indeed also the acts of the university in compliance or non-compliance with investigative efforts," Fina said. "All of those issues were opened up to us to discuss with Miss Baldwin."

At the same time, during the Oct. 22 meeting, Judge Feudale said Fina would not ask Baldwin questions about her representation related to Spanier, Curley and Schultz.

The three defendants are facing multiple charges, including perjury and failing to report child abuse related to Sandusky, who a judge sentenced to 30-60 years in prison for sexually abusing boys.

All three defendants are still awaiting trial. They have strongly proclaimed their innocence and promise to vigorously fight the charges in court.


Unsealed Transcript Offers Insight into Baldwin's Controversial Testimony

Pre-Trial Hearing for Spanier, Curley and Schultz Ends, Judge Refuses to Hear Any Testimony


Jennifer Miller is a reporter for She has worked in journalism since 2005. She's covered news at the local, state and national level with an emphasis on crime and local government.
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