TribLIVE

| News


 
Larger text Larger text Smaller text Smaller text | Order Photo Reprints

Spanier's defense team says testimony from ex-general counsel inadmissible

By Centre Daily Times
Saturday, May 25, 2013, 4:03 p.m.
 

The lawyers defending Graham Spanier have asked a judge to dismiss the charges against the former Penn State president, arguing that prosecutors' evidence in the obstruction and perjury case is based on illegally obtained grand jury testimony from the university's ex-general counsel.

The defense lawyers' latest salvo to dismantle the long-stalled case occurred by way of a motion last week to quash the criminal complaint, which accuses the former university president of conspiring to hide abuse allegations against former coach Jerry Sandusky more than a decade ago.

The lawyers for Spanier accused ex-Penn State general counsel Cynthia Baldwin of violating attorney-client privilege when she testified about her confidential discussions with Spanier when she went to the grand jury sometime last fall. She accompanied Spanier in 2011 when he went to the grand jury and even heard him testify.

Furthermore, Spanier's lawyers said Baldwin never alerted him that his colleagues Tim Curley, then the athletic director, and Gary Schultz, then an administrator, were targets of the investigation.

The lawyers for Spanier, Curley and Schultz have maintained that their clients are innocent. The men are awaiting a preliminary hearing on obstruction of justice and related charges.

“I believed that Ms. Baldwin was representing me during and in connection with the grand jury proceedings and that she was acting in my best interests,” Spanier said in a signed affidavit that accompanied his lawyer's legal motions.

According to the motion from Spanier's lawyers, Baldwin never told Spanier he had been subpoenaed to the grand jury, and he went voluntarily to Harrisburg to testify in April 2011.

The lawyers said Baldwin should have discerned that because she sat through their testimonies — an issue Curley's and Schultz's lawyers are challenging in court as well.

Spanier's legal team asked for the dismissal of the failure to report abuse and child endangerment counts, arguing that the statute of limitations had expired.

University of Pennsylvania law professor David Rudovsky said Baldwin should have known there was a conflict of interest by representing Penn State and Spanier. Rudovsky said Baldwin was “absolutely prohibited” from disclosing privileged conversations, regardless if she thought there was a crime involved.

 

 
 


Show commenting policy

Most-Read Allegheny

  1. Wilkinsburg couple arrested after baby girl dies following beating
  2. Ferrante trial: Cyanide order form in plain sight
  3. PennDOT warns of delays next week on Butler Street near Highland Park Bridge
  4. State’s ‘public-private’ transportation deal will replace 53 bridges in Allegheny County
  5. Howard Hanna family donates $1M for business student scholarships at University of Pittsburgh
  6. Move-in begins at new homes on site of Hill District housing project
  7. Bridge work to close Cliff Mine Road this weekend
  8. Port Authority steps closer to linking Oakland and Downtown, makes switch from Highmark to Aetna
  9. VA promotion for administrator stuns legislator
  10. Report linking field surface to cancer elicits Mt. Lebanon protest
  11. Allegheny County health officials call on retirement homes to stay vigilant on Legionella prevention
Subscribe today! Click here for our subscription offers.