Lessons in Employer Liability: What to Take Away from the Sexual-abuse Scandal at Penn State

December 5, 2011


Recent allegations that Jerry Sandusky, former defensive coordinator for the Penn State University football team, sexually abused children while employed by the school have brought to the forefront issues relating to employer liability for the conduct of its employees.

So, what is an employer’s responsibility when confronted by alleged egregious behavior on the part of an employee?

Shortly after the criminal indictment went public, which charged Sandusky with 40 counts of sexually abusing children, Penn State fi red head football coach Joe Paterno, and other school officials either resigned or were terminated in the wake of the allegations. In addition to Sandusky, the indictment charged athletic director Tim Curley and the senior vice president for finance and business, Gary Schultz, with failing to report the sexual assaults and for misleading investigators.

While reports continue to surface that Sandusky’s behavior was a widely protected secret, Penn State finds itself in a precarious position as his employer because some of the alleged incidents occurred while he was employed by Penn State, and others occurred while he was a retiree using its facilities. …

You may read more at the link below.

by: Kevin V. Maltby

December 5, 2011

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