The former president of Penn State University and two other top officials will go to trial for the alleged cover-up of Jerry Sandusky's child abuse crimes, a court has ruled.
Former president Graham Spanier, former vice president Gary Schultz, and ex-athletic director Tim Curley appeared for a pre-trial hearing in which witnesses involved in the case testified about how much the three executives knew about Sandusky's crimes.
Sandusky was found guilty in June, 2012, of 45 counts of child abuse and sentenced to life in prison.
Prosecutors allege that the three top PSU executives were informed that Sandusky was seen abusing a boy on campus and failed to tell police, and then lied to a grand jury about what they knew.
The men all claim they were not aware that Sandusky was having sexual contact with the boy during the incident in question, but thought he was simply rough-housing with the child.
The three are charged with perjury, obstruction, endangering the welfare of children, failure to properly report suspected abuse and conspiracy. Those charges include allegations of hiding evidence from investigators and lying to a grand jury.
During the two-day hearing in Pennsylvania, witnesses including assistant coach Mike McQueary and university spokeswoman Lisa Powers were called to testify.
McQueary saw Sandusky in the shower with a boy in 2001 and has testified that he believed Sandusky was having sexual contact with the boy. He then told Penn State's head football coach Joe Paterno what he saw, which triggered a set of conversations up the Penn State chain of command about the incident.
McQueary testified on Monday that after Sandusky was arrested, Paterno warned McQueary that the university would try to make him a scapegoat in the case and told him not to trust the administrators, according to ABC News affiliate WPVI.
Paterno also told McQueary that "Old Main screwed up," referring to the administrators' response to the Sandusky scandal, McQueary testified in court on Monday.
The testimony may boost the prosecution's claim that the three executives lied about what they knew, but defense attorneys were quick to point out that McQueary may have a conflict of interest. He has filed a whistleblower claim against the university.
Paterno died in January 2012. His family has vehemently denied accusations that he covered up allegations against Sandusky, the once highly-regarded defensive coordinator.
Lisa Powers, spokeswoman for the university, was called to testify during the hearing about the university's response to the crisis, according the Patriot-News. She said that after Sandusky was arrested, "all hell broke loose" in Old Main, according to the report.
She also testified that Spanier attempted to resign from his position as university president just hours before he was fired by the board of trustees.
The judge overseeing the hearing ruled Tuesday that there was enough evidence to carry the charges over to a full trial. No date has been set yet for when the trial will start.
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