Larry Nassar, the former USA Gymnastics team doctor, pleaded guilty in a MI court on Wednesday to seven counts of first-degree criminal sexual conduct. In the wake of the court case, Olympic medal victor McKayla Maroney spoke out against her sport's governing body, and the team for the way they handled the years of abuse that many athletes faced at the hands of Nassar. Steve Penny resigned as CEO of the organization after 70 athletes sued both USA Gymnastics and Nassar for various assaults over his years as the volunteer doctor in charge of health and wellness for the organization. The Olympic gymnasts are not part of the MI cases.
The institutions issued statements Wednesday after victims and their lawyers criticized their handling of Nassar, who pleaded guilty in a MI courtroom to molesting girls under the guise of medical treatment. I want them to heal.
Larry Nassar, 54, admitted to sexually assaulting at least seven girls, all but one of whom are gymnasts, while he was working as a physician for USA Gymnastics and Michigan State University.
"I'm so sorry that this was like a match that turned into a forest fire, out of control", Nassar said in his plea.
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The plea deal with prosecutors calls for a minimum prison sentence of 25 years but the judge could set the minimum as high as 40 years. "I have no animosity toward anyone".
Recently, members of the "Fierce Five", including Aly Raisman and McKayla Maroney, who took team gold at the 2012 Olympics, accused Nassar of sexual misconduct in his role as the USA Gymnastics doctor. I just want healing.
Larry Nassar pleaded guilty Wednesday in a MI courtroom. On Monday, Nassar will appear in court once again for a hearing regarding federal-level charges of receiving and possessing child pornography.
Judge Rosemarie Aquilina said Nassar said sexual abuse was a nationwide 'epidemic'.
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