Last updated: July 13. 2013 2:50PM -

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It seems like a very simple thing.

A woman at the Walmart store in Newberry Township witnessed a man allegedly touching a 2-year-old girl in an inappropriate manner and, according to police, yelled, “Hey!”

The girl’s mother, who had her back to the cart, turned to see what the woman was yelling about. When she did, according to police, she saw an older man standing there, holding his hands up. The witness reportedly yelled that the man had been touching the child’s private area.

Police said the man left the store and fled in a car. The mother got the license plate number and police were able to identify a suspect, Robert R. Alfrey, 70, who later told investigators that he was “yelled at by some lady for touching a little girl.”

He is, of course, innocent until proven guilty in court.

But we must laud a woman who, seeing something she believed was inappropriate, raised her voice.

It seems like the kind of thing that anybody would do in the same situation.

But, as we learned from the Penn State/Jerry Sandusky scandal, maybe not.

In that case, it seemed that plenty of people knew about Mr. Sandusky’s depraved behavior. One, former assistant coach Mike McQueary, allegedly witnessed it. He reported it to former coach Joe

Paterno, who reported it to former athletic director Tim Curley, who reported it to former university vice president Gary Schultz, who reported it to former university president Graham Spanier.

A lot of talk ensued. But it seems that nobody essentially yelled, “Hey!” Nobody called police. Nobody did much to stop Mr. Sandusky from preying on other victims. A decade passed, 10 years in which Mr. Sandusky was free to groom other victims.

The administrators facing charges — Messrs. Curley, Schultz and Spanier — are accused of covering up Mr. Sandusky’s crimes, considering the image of the university and their careers before the safety and well-being of children.

The woman at Walmart apparently did not think about the consequences of her actions. She did not take time to ponder how taking action would affect her life, that she’d have to be interviewed by police and may be called as a witness should the case go to trial and how that might affect her life.

She saw someone doing something she believed to be inappropriate to a child — and she did something.

She reacted.

She did what anyone should do in such a situation.

If you witness — or even suspect — child abuse, get involved, speak up, call police.

York Daily Record (York, Pa.)

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