Larry Nassar loses last resort in sexual assault scandal

DETROIT (AP) — The Michigan Supreme Court on Friday rejected a final appeal by sports doctor Larry Nassar, who was sentenced to decades in prison for sexually assaulting gymnasts, including Olympic medalists.

The court refused to accept the case. Nassar’s lawyers said he was treated unfairly in 2018 and deserved a new hearing, based on vindictive comments from a judge who called him a “monster” who would “languish” in prison like the evil witch in “The Wizard of Oz.” .

“I just signed your death warrant,” Ingham County Judge Rosemarie Aquilina said of Nassar’s 40-year sentence.

More than 150 victims spoke or gave statements during an extraordinary seven-day hearing at the Aquilina courthouse.

Nassar pleaded guilty to sexually assaulting gymnasts and other athletes with his hands under the guise of medical treatment for hip and leg injuries. He has worked at Michigan State University and Indianapolis-based USA Gymnastics, traveling the world with the sport’s elites.

“Our Constitution does not allow for cruel and unusual punishments,” the judge said. “If that happened, I must say I could allow what he did to all these beautiful souls, these young girls in their childhood. I would allow someone or many people to do to him what he did to others.”

Nassar later received another 40-year sentence in a separate case in a neighboring county.

He is currently in federal prison for child pornography offenses in a different case that emerged from the same investigation. The sentences effectively mean that Nassar, 58, will spend the rest of his life behind bars.

The repercussions continue from the scandal. More than 100 women, including Olympic gold medalist Simone Biles, are collectively asking for more than $1 billion from the federal government for the FBI’s failure to apprehend Nassar when agents learned of the charges against him in 2015. He was arrested by police. from Michigan State University in 2015. 2016, more than a year later.

Michigan State, accused of missing opportunities over many years to detain Nassar, agreed to pay $500 million to more than 300 women and girls who were assaulted by him. USA Gymnastics and the US Olympic and Paralympic Committee have struck a $380 million deal.

For more stories about Larry Nassar and the aftermath of his years of sexual abuse of women and girls:

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