The former USA Gymnastics team doctor admitted guilt to numerous counts of first-degree criminal sexual conduct in court on Wednesday.
Larry Nassar, who had been accused of sexually assaulting dozens of women, admitted that the allegations were true and asked for a plea bargain in a Michigan circuit court Wednesday. Nassar was charged with 22 counts of first-degree criminal sexual conduct and 11 counts of third-degree criminal sexual conduct, a Michigan Attorney General spokesperson told CNN. Six of the charges brought against Nassar were for assaults against 13 to 15 year-old girls.
Famous gold medalist, Aly Raisman, says she was 15 when Nassar began abusing her and renowned gymnast McKayla Maroney also posits that Nassar began molesting her when she was 13 years old. Gymnast Rachael Denhollander also went to Nassar for help with her injuries and said he sexually abused her at five of her visits. “I froze, because I knew that was sexual assault,” she said.
“I didn’t publicly share my experiences as well as many other things because for years we were conditioned to stay silent and honestly some things were extremely painful. I wholeheartedly support my teammates for coming forward with what happened to them,” gymnast Gabby Douglas said after the news of Nassar’s abuse came out.
“The conduct of which Larry Nassar is accused is appalling, and we are very sorry that any athlete has been harmed during her or his gymnastics career,” USA Gymnastics said. “We are committed to further developing a culture that has safe sport as a top priority throughout the organization,” the sports organization added, explaining that is has put in place a new set of policies to deter sexual assault and to monitor sexual assault allegations.
Nassar will be tried in a separate hearing for child pornograhy.
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