Report: DOJ Investigating FBI handling of Nassar

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Several institutions from Michigan State University, to USA Gymnastics, have been under intense scrutiny for the last year-and-a-half for the way they handled the sexual abuse scandal involving former gymnastics doctor Larry Nassar.

But a new report from the Wall Street Journal has revealed that another agency is coming under fire.

 

According to the newspaper, the Justice Department is investigating how the FBI handled sexual abuse allegations against Nassar.

This comes several months after reports revealed that the FBI was alerted about the former doctor in July of 2015, but if you recall, the first time Nassar was publicly exposed was in 2016 after the Indianapolis Star published allegations detailed by Rachael Denhollander as a part of a larger expose about USA Gymnastics.

 

The Wall Street Journal report, published Tuesday night, said the move by the department’s Inspector General’s Office follows an “internal FBI review opened earlier this year.”

Back in February, The New York Times published a report that found at least 40 women and girls were sexually assaulted by Nassar over a 14-month period, during a time when the FBI knew the former doctor had been accused of sexually assaulting elite gymnasts.

Those allegations, however, were not made public.

In a phone interview Tuesday night, Denhollander said she’s been waiting two full years for action on this very issue.

 

“As soon as I came forward, I found out that there had been a report in 2015 and that the FBI had done nothing,” she said. “I had been asking these questions for two full years. There was definite collaboration between USAG and the FBI and I think those are answers that we also need.”

Denhollander continued: “There’s a reason that Steve Penny pled the fifth when he was supposed to testify before the senate.”

On Wednesday, John Manly, an attorney representing more than 100 women sexually abused by Nassar, spoke out about this investigation via Twitter saying: “Despite numerous requests from my office & my clients the FBI and all of the US Attorneys offices involved with Nassar refused to meet with the victims & their families to discuss the investigation. These families deserve answers. It’s the least our country can do.”

 

News of the DOJ investigation came the same day USA Gymnastics announced that Kerry Perry, its president and CEO, resigned from her position amid criticism of the way she handled the fallout from the Nassar scandal.

Perry’s departure is effective immediately.

 

When asked earlier this year, the FBI declined to answer questions about its investigation into Nassar, saying only that the allegations against him “transcended jurisdictions.”

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