Published: Thu, October 19, 2017
Culture&Arts | By Hattie Nash

Who Is Dr. Larry Nassar? McKayla Maroney Reveals Him As Alleged Abuser

Who Is Dr. Larry Nassar? McKayla Maroney Reveals Him As Alleged Abuser

A two-time Olympic medalist for the USA women's gymnastic team accused a former team doctor, who is already facing abuse charges, of sexual assault when she was a young teen. Other gymnasts, including Jamie Dantzscher, Jessica Howard, Jeanette Antolin and Rachel Denhollander, have said they were abused by Nassar while at the ranch, alleging that he was allowed to enter the girls' rooms after training to perform supposed "treatments".

Maroney alleged that, starting when she was just 13, she had been "molested" by Nassar, who had been involved with USA Gymnastics for almost three decades as a trainer and national medical coordinator, a role that led him to treat the country's elite gymnasts at four separate Olympic Games.

Dr. Larry Nassar has pleaded guilty to federal child pornography charges and is awaiting sentencing.

Maroney said that Nassar, then the team doctor, began abusing her when she was 13-years-old and didn't stop until she left the sport.

One of the most harrowing parts of her story allegedly happened when she was 15 years old when Maroney says Nassar gave her a sleeping pill on a flight to Tokyo.

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Nassar has been accused by more than 100 women of sexual assault during his time as a USA Gymnastics doctor, but agreed to a plea deal in June saying that he was guilty of the federal child-pornography charge that he had been accused of.

Sharing her the wake of Harvey Weinstein's sexual assault scandal, McKayla Maroney took to Twitter on Wednesday, Oct. 18, to participate in the ever-growing #MeToo social media campaign. Refresh your page to make sure you are seeing the most current information.

"It happened in London before my team and I won the gold medal, and it happened before I won my silver (in vault in London)", Maroney wrote.

Maroney then went on to describe what she said was her "scariest night" of her life when she was 15. "This is happening everywhere".

"I had a dream to go to the Olympics, and the things that I had to endure to get there were unnecessary and disgusting", she said.

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"We are sorry that any athlete has been harmed during her or his gymnastics career".

"Sure, from the outside looking in, it's an fantastic story".

In her post, Maroney called for victims to speak about abuse and for people and institutions in positions of power to be "held accountable for their inappropriate actions and behavior".

USA Gymnastics added that it was "strengthening and enhancing our policies and procedures regarding abuse" and was committed to working to "keep our athletes as safe as possible". "I hope so", Maroney wrote.

But she ended on a strong note for the future: "Our silence has given the wrong people power for too long, and it's time to take our power back".

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She ends with one more piece of advice: "remember, it's never too late to speak up".

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