Senate plans child protection hearing

Updated: November 22, 2011, 9:54 AM ET
ESPN.com news services

WASHINGTON -- The Senate has scheduled the first congressional hearing in the wake of the Penn State child abuse scandal.

Three senators announced Monday that a Dec. 13 hearing will examine how well the nation is protecting children from abuse and neglect.

Pennsylvania Sen. Bob Casey requested the hearing by a panel of the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee. Maryland Sen. Barbara Mikulski says she hopes it will shed light on prevention and deterrence of child sexual abuse.

Former Penn State assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky is accused of molesting eight boys over a 15-year period beginning in the mid-1990s. He's denied sexual contact with children but acknowledged showering with boys and embracing them. Authorities have said some assaults happened on campus and were reported to administrators but not to police.

In related developments Monday, a man who knew Sandusky through a youth charity years ago says the coach was like a father figure but grew clingy as he got older.

Frankie Probst said Monday on NBC's "Rock Center" he and Sandusky grew apart after six years. The 24-year-old Probst says he can't recall any inappropriate behavior, though he says he started getting uncomfortable when Sandusky placed a hand above his knee while in a car.

Sandusky started The Second Mile charity for disadvantaged youths in the 1970s. Probst says he met Sandusky through the charity. He says he would stay at Sandusky's home and Sandusky would take him to games.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.

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