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Corbett Declines Questioning on Penn State Issues at Military Service

by on May 20, 2012 3:50 PM

Gov. Tom Corbett was on hand for Sunday’s tribute to the Pennsylvania National Guard’s 28th Infantry Division in Boalsburg, the featured keynote speaker at the ceremony honoring the unit.

“This was a very moving one to me,” Corbett said. “I choked back a couple times because this is about our men and women, young men and women and older men and women who have gone to war to defend our country, to defend our Commonwealth, who haven’t come back. But it’s also recognition to those who are here who are still serving.”

That was the extent of Corbett's comments.

He declined questions on extending the statute of limitations. Prosecutors in the Jerry Sandusky child sex abuse case recently had a judge change the date of the Lasch shower incident by 13 months. The significance is this puts the alleged crime outside the statute of limitations, meaning Tim Curley and Gary Schultz, two Penn State officials also charged in connection with the case, will likely see their failure to report charge dropped.

The statute of limitations currently lasts 10 years. The date change, from March 2002 to Feb. 2001, means prosecutors missed the time limit by nine months. Curley and Schultz were indicted in Nov. 2011.

Both men also are charged with perjury, but that charge could also be in jeopardy because of the date change, according to Wes Oliver, a law professor for Widener who has studied the Sandusky case and has sat in on some of its court proceedings.

Corbett, who served in the division from 1971-1984, also declined questions on Penn State, his pending university Board of Trustees appointments and state funding.

In other words, he set the agenda, and it was Sunday’s ceremony or nothing.

“It’s to remind people while they sleep the Guard is out there,” Corbett said, “the first respondents are out there on a regular basis protecting them so they can sleep.”

The 28th Division, founded in 1879, is the oldest division in the U.S. Armed Forces. Members served during World War I, World War II and the Korean War, as well as Afghanistan and Iraq.

During roll call, when the names were read of those who have fallen in service since Sept. 11, tears streamed down the cheeks of women in the crowd, estimated in the hundreds.

Nate Mink covers Penn State football and news for He's on Twitter as @MinkNate.
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