Former USA Gymnastics doctor Larry Nassar pleaded guilty on Wednesday, November 22, to seven counts of molestation, The New York Times reports. He is expected to face at least 25 years in prison.
Wearing an orange jail jumpsuit, the 54-year-old appeared in Ingham County Circuit Court in Michigan and admitted to sexually assaulting seven girls, three of whom were under the age of 13. He has been accused of inappropriate or abusive sexual behavior by more than 130 women and girls, including Olympic gold medalists Aly Raisman, Gabby Douglas and McKayla Maroney.
During his court appearance, Nassar said he made the plea “to move the community forward and stop the hurting,” adding that he prays “every day for forgiveness.” Judge Rosemarie Aquilina responded, “You used your position of trust in the most vile way: to abuse children.”
The disgraced doctor’s sentencing is set for January 12, 2018. His victims will have an opportunity to speak.
Raisman, 23, responded to Nassar’s plea on Wednesday morning, tweeting, “Court referring to Larry as DOCTOR Nassar. I AM DISGUSTED. I am very disappointed. He does NOT deserve that. Larry is digusting. Larry is a MONSTER not a doctor.”
Court referring to Larry as DOCTOR Nassar. I AM DISGUSTED. I am very disappointed. He does NOT deserve that. Larry is digusting. Larry is a MONSTER not a doctor.
— Alexandra Raisman (@Aly_Raisman) November 22, 2017
After Raisman came forward earlier this month, Douglas, 21, tweeted that “it is our responsibility as women to dress modestly and be classy. Dressing in a provocative/sexual way entices the wrong crowd.” Douglas’ remarks quickly drew criticism from many people, including Simone Biles, who tweeted that her teammate’s post was shocking “but it doesn’t surprise me.” Douglas later came forward to say she had also been abused by Nassar.
The former Michigan State University doctor still faces charges in Eaton County, Michigan, and is also awaiting sentencing after pleading guilty in federal court on child pornography charges. He was fired by USA Gymnastics in 2015.
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