U.S. women gymnasts band together in wake of sexual abuse
U.S. women gymnasts band together in wake of sexual abuse
AFP Getty Images Former US national gymnastics team doctor Larry Nassar in court Wednesday
26 Ноября, 2017, 01:35
Nassar is accused of sexually assaulting hundreds of girls while he served as team doctor for Team USA, Michigan State University and for a gymnastics center in Dimondale, Mich.
Nassar entered his plea during a court hearing in MI on Wednesday. Nassar has plead guilty to multiple charges and will be sentenced in January 2018, for which he could receive up to 25 years in jail in addition to the life sentence he faces for July's charges.
Ms Douglas is the third member of the "Fierce Five" gymnastics team who won a team gold at the 2012 London Olympics to allege abuse by Nassar, joining Aly Raisman and McKayla Maroney.
Boyce, Smith, Alexis Alvarado and Christine Harrison, who all accuse Nassar of sexual abuse, talked about the many thoughts running through their minds as they listened to Nassar pleading guilty. "I agree that now is the time of healing, but it may take them a lifetime a healing while you spend your lifetime behind bars thinking about what you did in taking away their childhood", she said.
The comment was widely attacked as victim shaming, with Simone Biles, the 2016 all-around gold medalist, showing her disappointment in a post to Twitter in which she said it "shocks me that I'm seeing this but it doesn't surprise me".
USA Gymnastics said in a statement that it was "very sorry that any athlete was harmed by Larry Nassar" and that it fired Nassar and reported him to the Federal Bureau of Investigation after first learning of concerns in 2015.
In a courtroom packed with victims and their families, Nassar pleaded guilty to seven counts of first-degree criminal sexual conduct in Ingham County Circuit Court.
Nassar's case was part of a scandal which saw USA Gymnastics president Steve Penny resign past year.
"We need to take a hard, honest look at the sport's culture, governance and leadership, so we can understand the problem and come up with solutions that will make the sport safer for current and future generations", Raisman said on Twitter shortly after Nassar's hearing.
Larry Nassar, 54, admitted to digitally penetrating seven girls, mostly under the guise of treatment at his Lansing-area home in MI and a campus clinic, between 1998 and 2015.
John Manly, an attorney for 105 accusers, said the three institutions "miserably failed children", and he likened what happened with Nassar to the child sex abuse scandal at Penn State University. The school's gymnastics coach, Kathie Klages, was suspended and stepped down previous year.
Nassar also agreed to a lifetime of electronic monitoring.
"Why are we looking at why didn't the girls speak up?" she said in an interview with "60 Minutes" this month.
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