December 13, 2017

Larry Nassar receives maximum 60-year sentence by federal judge

07 December 2017, 09:54 | Joan Schultz

Fellow gymnasts Aly Raisman and Gabby Douglas have also come forward with allegations against the doctor

Fellow gymnasts Aly Raisman and Gabby Douglas have also come forward with allegations against the doctor

Nassar, 54, was sentenced to 60 years in prison for child pornography charges Thursday after a federal judge declared the former gymnastics doctor a threat to children. "She has transformed from a bubbly, positive, loving, world class athlete into a young adult who was deeply depressed, at times suicidal".

Instead, McKayla and her mother Erin Maroney chose to testify in the form of letters, which have been made public, addressed to the federal judge presiding the case, ESPN reports.

Erin Maroney corroborates this, and her account of the isolation from parents ran deeper.

"It started when I was 13 years old, at one of my first national team training camps, in Texas, and it didn't end until I left the sport", Maroney wrote in her letter to the court.

Erin and her husband were told they were not allowed to stay with their daughter at competitions overseas nor on the Karyoli Ranch, the United States of America team's training centre in Huntsville, Texas named after former coaches Bela and Marta Karyoli, where McKayla says Nassar first abused her.

She continued, "This experience has shattered McKayla". My husband once questioned the propriety of the isolation of the girls during worldwide travel. In a November interview with "60 Minutes", Raisman specifically took aim at USA Gymnastics for allowing the abuse to go on for two decades. At 14, she made the National Team and was introduced to Nassar. "He'd given me a sleeping pill for the flight, and the next thing I know, I was all alone with him in his hotel room getting a 'treatment.' I thought I was going to die that night", she wrote. "No one has apologised", Erin wrote. She was only 15 years old. He also was the team physician for the Michigan State University gymnastics and women's crew teams as well as an associate professor at MSU's College of Osteopathic Medicine. "We were told he's the best doctor, he's the United States Olympic doctor and the USA Gymnastics doctor, and we were very lucky we were able to see him". Not once. No one has apologized.

More than 100 civil claims are pending against Michigan State and USA Gymnastics.

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McKayla's testimony was a bit more measured, but no less pointed.

"He abused my trust, he abused my body and he left scars on my psyche that may never go away ..."

Nassar, who worked with USA Gymnastics for almost three decades as a trainer and medical coordinator, could receive a minimum sentence of 27 years, but prosecutors want a 60-year prison term.

In April, the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs revoked Nassar's medical license for a minimum of three years, according to Jason Moon, communications director for the agency.

While many victims have since said they tried to tell others about Nassar's behavior years ago, Denhollander's complaint was the first allegation against Nassar that was believed, prompting dozens of other survivors to come forward with similar stories.

In all likelihood, Larry Nassar will spend the rest of his life behind bars.

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