McKayla Maroney, a breakout star of the 2012 U.S. Women’s Olympic Gymnastics squad, says she was molested by team doctor Larry Nassar starting at age 13. The sexual abuse, she says, went on until she left the sport in 2017.
Maroney alleges Nassar, who pleaded guilty to federal child pornography charges in June and has been accused by over 100 girls and women of sexual assault during his tenure with USA Gymnastics, also abused her during the 2012 games. At those Olympics, she won a team gold medal and a silver in the individual vault. The assaults, she said in a Twitter post, came when he “treated” her for hip and back pain.
She cited the recent #MeToo campaign as her reason for coming forward now to tell her story.
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“People should know that this is not just happening in Hollywood,” she wrote. “This is happening everywhere. Wherever there is a position of power, there seems to be potential for abuse. I had a dream to go to the Olympics, and the things that I had to endure to get there, were unnecessary, and disgusting.”
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Maroney recounts what she calls “the scariest night of my life,” when as a 15-year old, she was allegedly given a sleeping pill by Nassar and “the next thing I know, I was all alone with him in his hotel room getting a ‘treatment’. I thought I was going to die that night.”
Nassar is scheduled to be sentenced on Nov. 27 for the federal child pornography charges in Michigan. Prosecutors have recommended that he be given a prison sentence of between 22 and 27 years.
Last month, Nassar defended his procedures, which included digital vaginal penetration as “medically accepted and appropriate treatments” and denied he had performed them for any purpose other than medical treatment. The American Osteopathic Association told NBC News a “small number” of doctors are trained to do the procedure, but “it is not at all common”.
Nassar’s attorney Matthew Newburg declined to comment on the allegations to Fortune.
This story has been updated to reflect Newburg’s response.