Sandusky and the “Ten Year Old Boy in the Shower”


Yesterday, an additional part to the Sandusky saga was beginning to break across the internet — would John Ziegler of release the name of Victim 2? Would he “out” an anonymous victim? While this question was out there, the Pennsylvania Coalition Against Rape released this statement on their site that spoke about re-victimization and the importance of anonymity.


Meanwhile, Ziegler and/or his team released the following preface to their article:


Even with the release of said article the conversation remained shaped around the controversy of “outing.” And for good reason. Following the “Editor’s Note” he went on the defensive again — this time with more ferocity:


Editor Conaway’s Update: Later on in the article from which the above quote was pulled, Ziegler and/or his team did release a name. Based on my own research, I believe this was the name of Victim 2. I monitored the website for hours and despite countless tweets from individuals and organizations asking to please remove the victim’s name, the first and last name remained visible for the world to see for several hours. Only recently (time of writing is about 3:30am EST) did the site make some updates—removing the many mentions of this name and replacing it with ******* when Ziegler mentioned it and with ——- when it was mentioned in the interview with Sandusky. 

Ziegler’s media appearances highlighted another problem: while trying to portray himself as simply a truth-seeking researcher who wants to show how “the media bought into a narrative that makes no sense,” the name of his website is a phrase intentionally crafted in order to fuel the fires and rally a select group of troops. Real research demands the scientist’s inquiry into a theory, the novelist’s openness to discovery. It sounds and feels and reads like a fabricated answer with a team hellbent on forcing it to bleed true.

Regardless of where you stand on the recent controversies, Ziegler has certainly caused those still following this scandal to shift their focus on different (and perhaps new) details. Here’s a passage about Victim 2 from the article’s original release:


Along with discrediting McQueary, Ziegler is relentless in pointing out the level of support shown by Victim 2 for Sandusky:


The counter to Victim 2’s defending Sandusky was addressed by the Pennsylvania Coalition Against Rape‘s most recent post on the matter. Here are a few of the issues they mention:








Taking into consideration the fact that Victim 2 is a Sergeant in the Marine Corps, and is married, it is perhaps even more likely that he would choose to deny the abuse occurred. Coming out against an abuser must be hard enough, but when you add the expectations of masculinity that go along with being both a Marine and a husband, and in light of the way sexual abuse victims are treated with regularity in both the justice system and the media, it’s certainly easy to speculate on how he may have altered facts or even denied the abuse entirely. The new question at this point is not whether Sandusky is guilty or if the man referred to as “Victim 2” was in fact assaulted, it’s whether it is ever okay for the name of a victim of sexual assault to be released without their prior knowledge or permission. And then another layer: What if the victim was not anonymous originally but then decided to be?

We at the Good Men Project support, under any circumstance, the right of every survivor to choose anonymity.

–Photo: fluffisch/Flickr

About Cameron Conaway

Cameron Conaway is a former MMA fighter, an award-winning poet and the 2014 Emerging Writer-in-Residence at Penn State Altoona. He is the author of Caged: Memoirs of a Cage-Fighting Poet, Bonemeal: Poems, Until You Make the Shore and Malaria, Poems. Conaway is also on the Editorial Board at Slavery Today. Follow him on Google+ and on Twitter: @CameronConaway.


  1. I do hope that Ziegler’s defence of Paterno will be full detailed and cover all areas of concern and of Paterno’s conduct. Everything.

    Ziegler is an interesting character. He thinks that the age of victim 2 is significant and a deal breaker. So McQueary seems to have seen a 13/14 year old being sodomised and not a 10/11 year old…. and that changes exactly what levels of legal reality in Ziegler’s Brain? Maybe Ziegeler needs to do some school work and take Human Biology 101 – he may discover puberty and find it helpful in explaining his own past experiences. You never know, It may help him grow up too!

    It’s fascinating that Ziegler likes to play with words and weave the to his own meaning. I spotted a few very quickly, but it does help to be able to read:

    “This website is dedicated to compiling and analyzing the evidence that an out of control news media created a false narrative in the Jerry Sandusky scandal, which effectively framed Joe Paterno for crimes he obviously didn’t commit and of which he may have had very limited knowledge.

    Rhetorical Gymnastics are best practised in private and only shown in public when it’s the best that you have.

    Most fascinating is the is how Ziegler deals with issues of memory, recall, interpretation and how people (in his view victims and McQueary) are quite possibly telling the truth, but just don’t realise what they are missing out, how the big picture goes together and what reality is – how they are affected by people around them and the situation they find themselves in. He’ splaying on the edges of perceptual psychology and memory and creating ideas and possible interpretations to make sure his Paterno Expose is financially rewarding.

    The most rhetorically gymnastic thing is how Ziegler allies that plastic wrap psychology to everyone and what they did, their motivations, their memories and even makes so many puppets of investigators…. and yet in all there seems to be only one person who was perfect, with perfect recall and a perfect relationship with Law, Order and Humanity … Joe Pa Paterno. Joe Pa had perfect memory? Perfect recall? Joe Pa’s Milk Bottle Bottom Glasses were so perfect he saw the world with 100% clarity in all subjects 100% of the time -p and he had X-ray capacity too, but didn’t need it becasue all of the rest of his perception was So So perfect.

    One question – if Jo pa was so perfect in his world view why was he not able to see some rioting coming and tell the kids “No Rioting in my Name”? Anyone with a most rudimentary grasp of group psychology and dynamics could see it coming – and yet Joe Pa Missed it, and even the whole board of PSU and the local police. I keep wondering if there was something in the water supply in Happy Valley.

    Could some of the supposedly human behaviours of an elderly ex coach in happy valley indicate that Jo Pa Paterno is no where near as perfect as Ziegler likes to think?

    If Joe Pa was such a saint he would not have been fighting all the time with the Penn State Authorities over discipline and demanding that players not be disciplined when it interfered with his game play and self image of being the Winningest coach. Will Ziegler be addressing the issues of Paterno the Bully, the Lair, the Political Operative and selfish senile who was focused upon his supposed fantasy legacy and not even what was bets for his own players?

    Getting a player off a serious incident also that he can play does not promote rational world views. It shows that if you can get away with it by any means, do it and take Unjust Rewards. Does that sound like a saintly father figure who would be horrified if he was concerned that children were being sexually abused by an associate and colleague?

  2. Let’s be certain to treat ANY victim of a crime with respect, especially when it comes to how they are portrayed in the media. Mr. Sandusky continues to find ways to use media to deny his abuse of children. But who in the media is giving voice to the victims? And how are the victims portrayed? Over and over outside voices want to find fault with the VICTIM! Does this help or hurt move our society away from shaming victims of CSA? I don’t think so. Let’s for once use empathy in the way we treat victims of sexual violence — with respect, compassion, and understanding. Before we cast stones, we should all try to place ourselves in their shoes. I stand firmly on the side of the victim, their families, and for their healing. All the rest is just theater to me. Entertainment. Focus on the victims, please!

  3. Ziegler’s website was hacked after he posted the article. He did not use the victim’s name. I know this because I was attempting (miserably) to help fix it.
    Please ask yourself why someone would hack the website. Who benefited? Certainly not Ziegler.

    • Dear sc70s,

      Victim 2’s name was released and it stayed released for hours. In this situation, and especially with a guy as shady as Ziegler, this is what matters. There’s an awful lot of protectionism going on from people who are so blinded by their severe allegiance with Paterno that they forget there are victims. I know many of these people and I am from the same area where many of them are from. They are the same way with religious dogma. On many important issues they do not think – they join a team. It’s gross. So if Ziegler didn’t release the name are you saying that the “hacker” added the victim’s name into the post? Unlikely. And if you’re saying the name wasn’t released then please stop trolling. I watched for hours in horror as it remained all throughout the article and I’ve got the screenshots to prove it.


      • Obviously I know that the name appeared since we were trying to get rid of it. Yes, the hacker added the name (through a mistake acknowledged by Ziegler, one of the attachments contained the name initially). So it’s not at all unlikely. The issue here is that Victim 2 has stated publicly several times that HE WAS NOT victimized that night. Whether he was at other times, none of us can judge. Incidentally, Jim Clemente himself is backing up John Ziegler’s account of the incident. Please check it out. (ps I am an abuse survivor myself, not a blinded by Paterno cheerleader; It is abhorrent to watch others manipulate us and get away with it).

  4. I agree that naming the young man is a shameless ploy. However, if the young man did make his name public, technically Ziegler is not doing anything wrong by mentioning it. The name is out there for people to find. The question about anonymity came up before with Shawn Hornbeck and Ben Ownby. Both were rescued several years ago. Even though it quickly became clear both boys were sexually abused, because of the missing person notices and media coverage it was pointless to try to hide their identities. If they chose not to remain public, which Ben (or rather his parents) did, one could argue that you should not name him, but his is already out there. You cannot unring the bell.

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