Paterno reported the incident to the athletic director at Penn State -- but failed to notify the police.
Penn St. head football coach Joe Paterno just announced that he will retire at the end of the current football season ... calling the child molestation scandal, "one of the great sorrows of my life" and saying, "I wish I had done more."
Paterno released a statement saying, "I am absolutely devastated by the developments in this case. I grieve for the children and their families, and I pray for their comfort and relief."
He added, "I have decided to announce my retirement effective at the end of this season. At this moment the Board of Trustees should not spend a single minute discussing my status. They have far more important matters to address. I want to make this as easy for them as I possibly can."
"This is a tragedy. It is one of the great sorrows of my life. With the benefit of hindsight, I wish I had done more."
"My goals now are to keep my commitments to my players and staff and finish the season with dignity and determination. And then I will spend the rest of my life doing everything I can to help this University."
Officials say Paterno had knowledge that former Penn State assistant coach Jerry Sandusky had allegedly sexually abused a pre-teen boy in the showers in the Penn State locker room back in 2002.
The police commissioner says Paterno has not been accused of legal wrongdoing, but claims Paterno did NOT fulfill his "moral responsibility."