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Testimony: Public information office 'in the dark' about Sandusky investigation

HARRISBURG, Pa. -- 

By Gary Sinderson and Justin Platek

Penn State's public information director testified that her office was left in the dark about an investigation into former assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky.

Lisa Powers was the first witness called to the stand in day two of the preliminary hearing for former Penn State president Graham Spanier, former vice president Gary Schultz and former athletic director Tim Curley.

The men are charged with lying to the grand jury as it investigated Jerry Sandusky.

Powers said in her testimony that she received calls from reporters well before Sandusky was charged.

She said she questioned university officials, and was told by former general counsel Cynthia Baldwin that there was nothing to it.

Powers testified that she didn't learn about possible charges until Oct. 2011, one month before Sandusky was charged with child sexual abuse, and Curley and Schultz were charged with perjury.

"All hell broke loose," Powers said, adding that her office was not prepared to deal with the scandal or its fallout.

Powers discussed an early press release written by Spanier once the charges were filed.

The release, which supported Curley and Schultz, was heavily criticized by the public and Penn State's Board of Trustees.

Powers testified that on the day Spanier left the university, he wrote her four emails asking for them to be published.

Powers said that was something she could not do without approval from the board.

Powers said she wrote back saying, "I no longer work for you."

The hearing is expected to wrap up Tuesday afternoon.

Stay with 6 News and WJACTV.com for the latest information.

 
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Edgar Snyder

Washington Times

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