Some of the biggest names in USA Gymnastics are demanding accountability from the Federal Bureau of Investigation over several allegations that the agency botched an investigation into sexual abuse committed by former team doctor Larry Nassar, who is currently serving a lengthy sentence for his crimes.
During a Senate hearing on Wednesday, Simone Biles, McKayla Maroney, Aly Raisman, and Maggie Nichols gave emotional accounts of the abuse they suffered and the extent to which they feel they were betrayed by the FBI as well as USA Gymnastics and the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Committee.
“The scars of this horrific abuse continue,” Biles said during her testimony, adding that “the impact of this man’s abuse will never be over.”
Biles tearfully blamed Nassar as well as a “an entire system that allowed his abuse” for what she and her former teammates suffered.
Nassar, who was accused of sexually abusing over 150 women and girls during his time as USA Gymnastics team doctor and a doctor at Michigan State University, is currently serving sentences of up to 175 years in prison for sexual abuse as well as unrelated child pornography charges.
Nassar “turned out to be more of a pedophile than he was a doctor” as Maroney testified Wednesday.
The Justice Department Inspector General has released a report detailing how multiple agents investigating the accusations against Nassar violated FBI policy by making false statements and failing to properly document the victims’ allegations.
Maroney recalled tearfully giving a graphic, vulnerable account of “all of my molestations in extreme detail” to an agent over the phone only to have her statement improperly recorded.
“I cried, and there was just silence,” she said, explaining that the agent would go on to falsify her statement.
“I am tired of waiting for people to do the right thing,” she said.
The FBI has also been accused of failing to alert local authorities of the abuse allegations, despite the fact that they are required to do so in cases of suspected child sexual abuse.
In the time between when the FBI was first alerted of Nassar’s crimes and when he was finally arrested, it is believed he may have abused as many as 120 women and girls.
“The Justice Department has not brought charges against either of the former FBI agents most closely involved in the case,” NPR reported. “The FBI fired Special Agent Michael Langeman in the last two weeks, FBI Director Christopher Wray later told the panel. Langeman’s supervisor, Jay Abbott, previously resigned.”
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