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Ray Gricar Opted Not To Prosecute Sandusky In 1998, Went Missing In 2005

Centre County prosecutor Ray Gricar decided not to prosecute then-Penn St. Nittany Lions DC Jerry Sandusky in 1998 after charges of child molestation were made. He never fully explained his decision.

Seven years later, then-district attorney Gricar went missing. His car was found abandoned in a parking lot and his laptop was found in the Susquehanna River, damaged beyond repair. He was declared dead this past July after a fruitless search never turned up his body.

Now, it is very early in the prosecution of Sandusky and it might be a bit of a leap to assume all of this is connected. The one thing that is true, however, is that Gricar's reasons for choosing not to prosecute will almost never be known.

That's not to say Gricar didn't try to find out everything he could about Sandusky. Gricar was said to have led the investigation into the coach himself and even had a police officer hide in the house of an alleged victim while the mother confronted Sandusky. That confrontation allegedly led to Sandusky's admission that he showered with a child.

There is no proof as to whether or not Gricar ever heard about the 2002 shower incident years later.

Whether Gricar decided to disappear and likely kill himself over the Sandusky allegations or something completely unrelated, we'll probably know. That said, police revealed that Gricar's home computer had saved searches for "how to wreck a hard drive" and "water damage to a notebook computer," meaning that he clearly wanted to make sure something never saw the light of day.

For more on the Nittany Lions, visit Penn State blog Black Shoe Diaries. Follow along here for updates on the Jerry Sandusky case.