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November 27th, 2011
06:38 PM ET

Tape apparently reveals Fine's wife knew of alleged abuse

It’s a shocking audiotaped conversation between an alleged child sex abuse victim and the wife of accused offender Syracuse University Associate Head Basketball Coach Bernie Fine. ESPN’s “Outside the Lines” aired the audiotape some 8 years after first receiving it.
In the conversation, ESPN reports, Laurie Fine admits she knew about her husband's alleged activities, even on one occasion witnessing him allegedly abuse a boy. CNN’s Fredricka Whitfield talks to ESPN’s Mark Schwarz, who broke the story.

soundoff (27 Responses)
  1. John Moorehead

    I have been listening to the Newsroom comments for a couple of hours now, I keep hearing the recorded conversation of Mrs. Fines where she ( the wife) makes the statement that she told her husband to go have relationships with Gay men. Someone needs to point out the fact that being a Pediphile has nothing to do with being GAY!!!!

    November 27, 2011 at 6:56 pm |
  2. frederick bronson

    what is it with coaches, priest, and their actions with little boys ? then what sort of person just stands there and watches ? they should be charged the same...........
    frederick bronson nc

    November 27, 2011 at 7:13 pm |
  3. Bill

    ESPN had this tape and did WHAT with it? If Paterno gets fired for reporting the molestation to his superiors, then what should happen to ESPN officials who did NOTHING??

    November 27, 2011 at 7:19 pm |
  4. Roz Finea

    Eight years after receiving it!!!!

    November 27, 2011 at 7:29 pm |
  5. George P. Koulouris

    Fredericka.....you are a high quality anchorperson. Your CNN news should also check if ESPN pursued all of this because of who Floyd Little replaced on campus. Floyd replaced Henry Wildhack whose younger brother John Wildhack is the ( I believe) the # 2 man at ESPN. Could there be retaliation here against the University, and a highly recognized sports program.

    If there was wrongdoing by Bernie, he should definetely suffer the consequences. But, overall what a trmendously sloppy way of handling these allegations. Besides , Laurie is not all there either and was probably interested in the high standard of living, and leaving their value system out of their lives. Selfish people with no scruples or decency at all.

    Coach Jim Boeheim is a God fearing man and embodies what makes a true man a man....he is loyal and stands by what he may believe until someone sheds light on the matter. A true tragedy across the board.I am an alumni and have sent two daughters to S.U. with two sons to go.

    We are all praying for an outcome that will shed light on the truth and help those that need healing and saving.

    November 27, 2011 at 7:48 pm |
  6. Kelly

    The individual at ESPN who ultimately made the decision to not turn the tape over to police immediately after they received it, MUST be held accountable. Sexual abuse of a child is a serious crime. ESPN's argument of needing verification of the tapes authenticity before turning it over to authorities is both absurd and irrelevant - the police are responsible for .evaluating the evidence. There is no excuse for this – 2003 to 2011 – seriously ESPN?

    November 27, 2011 at 8:03 pm |
  7. Angie

    Does anyone else find it very disturbing that it was only taken seriously after a second person came forward? So even though they had a tape, they don't do anything with it until someone else says it happened to them too? That's sad.

    November 27, 2011 at 9:36 pm |
  8. Daddy2010

    Please parents, talk to your children. Make it your business to get into their business. Only you can protect them.

    November 27, 2011 at 9:40 pm |
  9. tom

    Unbelievable! ESPN said they had no obligation to tell authorities of tapes or molestation allegations. Their argument: because they couldn't coroborate! Well you did (as you mentioned) recorded her secret camera and confirmed it was her voice! That was the confirmation you needed idiots! ESPN is no different that McQueary. Worried about themselves, money and access to the sports world. At the expense of young boys who possibly were molested 2002 and on.

    November 27, 2011 at 10:15 pm |
  10. Angela

    You don't see it as your responsibility to stop the continuation or future abuse children by a sex offender? I can't even believe that you are even trying to justify not reporting it then. Were people not just fired because they didn't tell the authorities. Did your people not blast those people because of their inaction? My God, how hypocritical can you be? It should be against the law to not report crimes against children by every one all the time. Do you not realize you are helping destroy children's lives.

    November 28, 2011 at 9:03 am |
  11. Nancy Moran

    Anywhere children congregate be it church, sports, boy scouts, cub scouts, and even in places like movie theaters you can find pedophiles. Something pedophiles do is give more 'love' and attention to the child than the child has ever experienced before. They are something like teenaged boys terribly infatuated with a girl but with a pedophile the same kind of infatuation is experienced but with a child and since most pedophiles prefer a certain age group when the child they've been sexually abusing gets older than that they find another one and just drop the one who got too old. The issue of abandonment comes up then so rarely does the victim of a pedophile grow up to have anything like a normal life.

    November 28, 2011 at 9:22 am |
  12. JT

    WHY THE HECK are news agencies like CNN, NBC, ABC etc. not headlining the fact that ESPN DID NOTHING about a tape of molestation allegations??? You hyped up, tried and convicted Joe Paterno for not doing "enough" BUT he reported the allegations to his superiors! You should be ashamed of yourselves! Doesn't ABC own ESPN??? Shouldn't they be held accountable as well?

    November 28, 2011 at 10:36 am |
  13. donnie riggs

    I think every1 who knew what was going on should be charged for NOT REPORTING A CRIME...

    November 28, 2011 at 12:42 pm |
  14. Donni

    ESPN you disgust me!!! Sitting on something that terrible since 2003, WOW!!!! Obviously these weren't you or your children being abused! I hope everyone involved in this cover up goes to jail. I am from Upstate NY and am ashamed to have these people breathing the same air as I do!

    November 28, 2011 at 1:19 pm |
  15. Judy

    What about ESPN ? Sitting on this for 8 yrs...and then have the nerve to talk about other people not reporting what they saw or knew in the football scandal. I guess the world has gone way beyond my understanding anymore but the actions of a lot of people have made it so hard on people that truly care for kids that need help and do a wonderful job doing it, without thanks and the limelight of Football, basketball and sports news media's like ESPN.

    November 28, 2011 at 1:23 pm |
  16. Mary Anne Landers

    My question: Can Laurie Fine be prosecuted because she knew her husband was molesting children, but didn't tell the police? Or does a marital indemnity law apply here? I know a married person cannot legally be compelled to testify in court against his or her spouse.

    November 28, 2011 at 1:40 pm |
  17. Lee B.

    ESPN IS JUST AS GUILTY! they withheld evidence of a crime they atleast should of reported to the athorities! secretly taping the woman and then still not saying anything for years after only to come out now and say they needed a voice analysis to be sure? what? 9 years later we now have the technology to match voices? and why tape her to begin with?unbelievable!

    November 28, 2011 at 2:41 pm |
  18. mfb

    It may just be a coincidence but one common denominator in these institutions with football coaches, priests, etc...there are very few women in these programs.

    November 28, 2011 at 3:19 pm |
  19. DizDenooch

    Without a shadow of a doubt, ESPN withheld criminal information here, and the people responsible need to be held accountable for their failure to report clear evidence of child sexual abuse. During their coverage of the Penn State scandal, ESPN consistently aired panels of "analysts" criticizing Joe Paterno for not upholding his moral obligations after gaining knowledge of a child being sexually abused. Yet in an unspeakably hypocritical stance, ESPN's Mark Schwartz stated that "we don't see it as our job to go to authorities with evidence that we collect." How can ESPN possibly adopt such a clearly self-righteous double-standard after their heavy criticism of Paterno not calling the police? There were children being abused for gods sakes, and ESPN says it's not their job? Shame on everyone at ESPN who is defending this 8-year coverup of evidence, because this failure to act also allowed more sexual abuse of children to occur.

    Why isn't CNN, FOX, NBC, etc. putting ESPN on trial in the court of public opinion, as they did with Penn State? Or are they also a part of this coverup?

    December 3, 2011 at 3:24 am |
  20. a concerned citizen

    If CNN truly had this tape for ALL THESE YEARS and did not release it to the authorities, they have withheld EVIDENCE of a crime. There are two men from a university where are being charged for THIS VERY CRIME. The people who knew of this tape and DID NOT TURN IT OVER need to be prosecuted to the full extent of the law. This is NOT a first amendment rule, this is a case of withholding CRITICAL information of a crime that occurred.

    December 11, 2011 at 9:11 pm |
  21. WHERE Is THE Outrage

    WHERE oh WHERE is the OUTRAGE against ESPN for not turning over these tapes sooner? WHEN will ESPN be charged with witholding evidence?

    December 19, 2011 at 1:33 pm |
  22. patinderbycity

    thank you all for saying the words I've been wanting to say. When a child is abused their life goes down an unintened pathway. ESPN never tell the truth as it really is because of ratings. For some people this has been accepted in our society. We can stop this hideous mess if adults will "MAN UP". Check yourself ESPN before you wreck yourself (business). tO EVERYONE OUT THERE, BE CONSCIOUS OF WHAT IS GOING ON AROUND YOU. YOU ARE YOUR BROTHERS KEEPER."

    December 21, 2011 at 6:41 pm |
  23. gloria

    isn't it illegal to not report evidence of a crime? or will they hide behind "we are the press"

    December 21, 2011 at 7:36 pm |
  24. Gunnerb52

    ESPN should now be owned by the abuse victims. This is a sad excuse they use for not reporting this to police. Really? Have to verify the information? Took 8 years huh? ESPN should not even touch this subject in the news anymore. They are responsible for this going as far as it has. They could have stopped this 8 years ago and had the big scoop but it wasn't a big enough bang for the buch to overcome their news of sports and what they would lose.

    December 21, 2011 at 7:50 pm |
  25. Lea

    Completely outraged at ESPN for not reporting this under some nonsense reason would they have reported it if it was happening to someone in their family. It' unbelieveable how they are able to dismiss they social and moral duty as human beings so very shameful. They might as well have molested these children as well, what a tradegy for the victims and families. I pray that God will jude all involved that have some wrong doing in this case for the sake of the victims and families. It's utterly unfathomable this entire situation * eight years" ESPN could you actually look in the eyes of any of the victims and tell them that you "didn't have an obligation" to report this crime. My heart breaks for the children and their famlies I will never look at ESPN the same.

    March 21, 2012 at 4:23 pm |
  26. Jason

    This happens far too often. For Example, in Spokane Washington, A man Named Rook Joseph Kelly Claimed he was raped by another man while they were both out for a night of fun. Later they had sex together. Rook Demanded money. The other guy said no....so then...Rook Kelly had the man arrested For "rape in the 2nd degree with forcible compulsion". However, A video tape surfaced showing Rook Kelly clearly saying, "Give me $2,000 and we will call it good" after the "consentual sex". The arrested man claimed extortion the entire time and the video tape proved it. However, the police tried to cover up the video tape. The Man took a deal of "voyeurism and malicious mischief"... WHILE ROOK KELLY GOT AWAY WITH LYING ABOUT THE WHOLE THING AND WALKED AWAY SCOTT FREE. The Prosecutor in the case was "Sharon Lee Hedlund". Now, think about that. That is the justice system that you all are claiming to believe in?? This country is so bad right now...

    April 14, 2012 at 6:17 pm |
  27. In home personal training Long Island

    Laurie Fine admits she knew about her husband's alleged activities shame on her. How can she live with her self. I would have walked in the
    house a beat the c#$P out of my husband. How dare she sit there quietly.It sometimes feels like everyone is out for themselves.

    January 10, 2014 at 6:03 pm |

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