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Ex-Penn State Coach Sandusky's Charity Reportedly Close to Folding Amid Child Sex Abuse Scandal

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Nov. 5: Former Penn State football defensive coordinator Gerald Sandusky sits in a car as he leaves the office of Centre County Magisterial District Judge Leslie A. Dutchcot in State College, Pa.AP

The charity at the heart of a child sex abuse scandal involving a former Penn State assistant football coach is close to folding, the New York Times reports, though its chief executive countered that shutting down is just one option being considered.

The Second Mile, founded in 1977 by Jerry Sandusky to help at-risk youths, has faced its own share of scrutiny in the wake of Sandusky's arrest on charges he sexually abused eight boys over 15 years. He is accused of preying on boys he met through the charity.

The charity now is looking at other organizations that would be able to take over its programs, David Woodle, Second Mile's interim chief executive, told the Times.

"We're working hard to figure out how the programs can survive this event," Woodle said. "We aren't protective of the organization that it survives at all costs."

But Woodle later denied in a local newspaper interview that shutting down is a foregone conclusion.

"No decision has been made," he told the Patriot-News.

The latest developments at the charity come on the same day Penn State revealed it had been told the NCAA will examine how school officials handled the child sex abuse scandal, which has shocked the campus and cost the school's former president and coach Joe Paterno their jobs.

NCAA president Mark Emmert sent a letter to Penn State president Rod Erickson saying that the governing body for college sports will look at "Penn State's exercise of institutional control over its intercollegiate athletics programs" in the case of Sandusky, the former defensive coordinator accused of 40 counts of child sex abuse.

Sandusky is accused of abusing some of the eight boys on campus. Among the charges is an alleged assault in 2002 that was not brought to the attention of police, according to a grand jury report, even though top officials at Penn State knew there was an accusation of inappropriate behavior.

The resulting scandal has tarnished the image of a once squeaky-clean football program that has prided itself on the slogan "Success with Honor."

It also now appears to be bringing down the charity Sandusky is suspected of using to find his victims.

The charity continued to pay Sandusky a consulting fee totaling nearly $500,000 over eight years, tax documents show, even though an attorney who reportedly worked with the charity -- and who also served as a counsel to the university -- knew Sandusky faced child sex abuse allegations in 1998.

The longtime head of Second Mile, Jack Raykovitz, also was informed in 2002 by Penn State Athletic Director Tim Curley -- who now faces criminal charges and has left the school -- that an individual had reported to Curley that he was uncomfortable about seeing Sandusky in the locker room shower with a young boy.

Then in November 2008, Sandusky informed The Second Mile board that he was under investigation on new allegations. The charity subsequently barred him from activities involving children, charity officials said.

Raykovitz, resigned on Sunday and was replaced by Woodle as interim CEO.

The Second Mile is under investigation by state officials over the child sex abuse scandal, and the charity has hired a law firm to conduct its own independent internal investigation.

Woodle declined to tell the Times whether the charity had taken any action after learning about the allegations in 2002 and in 2008, saying board would answer such questions after the conclusion of the internal investigation, which is expected to take until the end of the year.

"The board agrees that these are good questions," he said.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

 

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