Top Tampa attorney, Barry Cohen, reacts to Penn State report

10:49 PM, Jul 12, 2012   |    comments
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Former Penn State football defensive coordinator Gerald "Jerry" Sandusky is seen in this Dec. 7, 2011, file booking photo released by the Centre County Correctional Facility in Bellefonte, Penn. (AP Photo/Centre County Correctional Facility)



Tampa, Florida- Outspoken Tampa attorney Barry Cohen calls the lack of action by Penn State leaders "egregious behavior" after top university officials learned a member of the football team's coaching staff was accused of abusing young boys.

"When people are in a superior position they should recognize it and fix it," said Cohen from his Tampa office Thursday, hours after an independent report was released slamming college officials.

"They had screwed up priorities, 'We're going to protect the school and the hell with the kids,'" said Cohen of the universities fear of bad publicity.

University Trustees also reacted to the report Thursday saying they take full responsibility for the failings calling the report, both saddening, and sobering.

Former Coach Jerry Sandusky was convicted on 45 counts of child sex abuse and could spend the rest of his life behind bars. His victims could now sue the university for not doing more.

"I can assure you if I were the lawyer for those victims, I would be talking about a lot of millions of dollars," said Cohen.

Victims could even go after the estate of the late Joe Paterno.

"But he's not the deep pocket. The deep pocket is the school."

Cohen hopes the rest of America learns a lesson from the mistakes made at Penn State.

"If people all over the country see something that needs fixing, [they should say] I'm going to get involved and I'm going to fix it."

Related Penn State stories:

Freeh findings point finger at Paterno and others

Penn State report condemns university leaders

Paterno: Abuse case 'not a football scandal'

Paterno family: late coach didn't cover up at PSU

Paterno family: Release all e-mails and records

Report: Sandusky wants out of isolation cell

Lawyer: Jerry Sandusky still says he's not guilty

After Sandusky verdict, focus shifts to Penn State

Jerry Sandusky trial: Defense rests without Sandusky testifying

Child rape case against Jerry Sandusky goes to jury

Sandusky's wife defends his contact with young boys

Sandusky's wife takes witness stand at trial 

Sandusky witness: I should have spoken out sooner


Beau Zimmer, 10 News

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