Nassar in the news: Two plaintiffs come forward
Amidst ongoing investigations by MSU and law enforcement, former university employee Larry Nassar has been under investigation since October 2016 for allegations of criminal sexual conduct.
To date, Nassar is now involved in multiple lawsuits, with plaintiffs named in cases against MSU and USA Gymnastics.
As details of the multiple cases unfold, the following is a recap of the newest information brought to light published by news organizations.
Local church avoids addressing Nassar ties despite evidence | The State News
Nassar served as a catechist for St. Thomas Aquinas Church and was also a Eucharistic minister at St. John Church and Student Center.
The State News reported on Sunday a blog post affiliated with St. Thomas Aquinas Parish indicated he was a catechist for the 2015-16 school year and worked at the St. John Church and Student Center, according to a spring 2000 edition of Communiqué, the magazine of the College of Osteopathic Medicine.
Nassar is accused of sexually abusing his patients and other young women with whom he had contact. He was arrested in December 2016 on charges of possessing "at least 37,000" images of child pornography.
Annie Kitching, director of religious education at St. Thomas Aquinas Parish, at first denied any indication of Nassar's employment but when attention was brought to the blog post admitted that Nassar "may have been at one time, but not for a long time."
The State News reported within 10 minutes of the conversation with Kitching, the list of catechists was taken off the blog.
Contrary to what Kitching said, Nassar was associated with the program until September 2016, and according to fellow catechist Michelle Danaj, who worked directly with Nassar, he had been teaching "for several years."
Two plaintiffs come forward, release identities in Nassar lawsuit | The State News
Larissa Boyce, once known in the Denhollander v. MSU lawsuit as "Jane BMSU Doe," has come forward and released some of the details about how Nassar allegedly sexually abused her.
The Sate News reported Monday afternoon that Boyce, a former student at MSU, had been a part of MSU's Youth Gymnastics program in the late 1990s and her involvement eventually led her to be treated by Nassar.
Nassar had allegedly sexually abused her when she was 16 years old — back in 1997.
Boyce claims she suffered from back pain and Nassar would give her "treatment" that involved placing his fingers into her pubic area to "relieve" the pain.
Boyce said the "treatments" made her uncomfortable.
Boyce also claimed that Nassar would grunt as if were aroused and also remove his belt during the procedure.
The State News reported after a few appointments with Nassar, Boyce aired her concerns with former MSU gymnastics coach Kathie Klages, who often served as her coach for the youth team.
Klages asked other gymnasts if Nassar made them feel uncomfortable, but only Boyce and another girl, who eventually retracted her statement, said they felt that way about Nassar.
Boyce said she believed Nassar and Klages worked at Great Lakes Gymnastics in the early 90s and had been friends ever since. Boyce said Klages would have filed a complaint against Nassar if Boyce wanted her to, but Boyce felt pressured by Klages not to.
Boyce last talked to Klages in 1998, when she quit gymnastics altogether. Boyce said she felt "ashamed" and "embarrassed" to pursue her athletic career.
Boyce said she thinks MSU enabled Nassar to continue seeing patients by ignoring the problem, the main reason the university is included in the lawsuit. Boyce said people who were supposed to be mandatory reporters — like Klages and Nassar — did not do their jobs and prevent the alleged sexual abuse from happening.
Boyce said she is coming forward in the hopes her voice can be used to initiate changes in institutions, support other victims of sexual abuse and help prevent sexual assault in the future.
The second plaintiff, formerly known as "Jane AMSU Doe" and a minor in the lawsuit claims to have been sexually assaulted in 2014 by Nassar with her father, Tony Guerrero, in the medical exam room with her.
She fractured her back while performing in gymnastics, which led her to seek treatment from Nassar, beginning when she was 11 or 12 years old.
Guerreo sat in the room while his daughter was treated and noticed signs of what he thought was inappropriate behavior by Nassar. Nassar would allegedly touch Guerrero's daughter's genitals every time and explained it was "aligning her spine," even in an appointment for her knee.
Parallels can be drawn from both Boyce and Guerreo's allegations. Both claim Nassar never wore gloves during his "treatments" and alluded to comparing Nassar to a "god" and how it was a privilege to work with a doctor who had ties to USA gymnastics.
Stay with The State News for more Nassar coverage.