EAST LANSING (WWJ/AP) – Michigan State University is responding to sexual assault allegations against a sports doctor by requiring written consent for certain treatments.
Michigan State says chaperones also can be present for any appointment. The policies are a result of widespread allegations that Dr. Larry Nassar molested women and girls when they were supposed to be treated for sports injuries.
Separately, Nassar is charged with sexually assaulting nine young gymnasts in the Lansing area with ungloved hands. He’s also being sued, along with Michigan State, by dozens of former athletes, mostly gymnasts. Nassar has denied wrongdoing.
The Michigan State policy says written consent is required for vaginal and rectal treatments.
Nassar was the doctor for Michigan State’s gymnastics team. He also worked for USA Gymnastics, which trains Olympians.
Campus Police Chief James Dunlap says his department has received more than 80 complaints about Nassar, who had a clinic at MSU where he treated members of the gymnastics team and younger regional gymnasts.
Attorneys representing women and girls say Nassar assaulted them during treatments for back and hip pain. Many of the women have the same allegations: During the course of Nassar’s treatments, the doctor allegedly inserted “his bare, ungloved and unlubricated hand” into the victim’s vagina, according to a complaint. When one woman reported Nassar’s disturbing “treatments” to the MSU training staff, she was allegedly told that Nassar was a world-renowned doctor and that his “inter‐vaginal adjustments” were legitimate medical treatments.
The girls ranged in age from 9 to 29 at the time. Most were minors “cloaked with innocence and trust of their youth,” attorney Stephen Drew told reporters. The alleged abuse took place over a roughly 20-year period.
Nassar’s accusers include 2000 Olympian Jamie Dantzscher.
“He would put his fingers inside of me, move my leg around,” Dantzscher told “60 Minutes” on Sunday. “He would tell me I was going to feel a pop and that that would put my hips back and help my back pain.”
In separate cases filed in 2016, Nassar is charged with possessing child pornography and molesting the daughter of family friends. During testimony last week, the now 25-year-old woman told the court her parents were friends with Nassar and the abuse happened from age 6 until age 12 during family visits to his home. She says he rubbed his genitals on her and digitally penetrated her, among other things.
Nassar was fired by Michigan State in September after the school said he violated restrictions that were put on his treatments, following a 2014 complaint. Since then, he has been the target of civil lawsuits, along with Michigan State and USA Gymnastics, which cut ties with Nassar in 2015.
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