Friday, June 14, 2024

MSU begins release of Nassar documents to Michigan Attorney General, hopes to finish by end of March

March 1, 2024
Sister Survivors hugging each after speaking at the Board of Trustees Meeting at the Hannah Administration Meeting on Sep. 8, 2023.
Sister Survivors hugging each after speaking at the Board of Trustees Meeting at the Hannah Administration Meeting on Sep. 8, 2023.

Michigan State University has begun the release of thousands of long-withheld documents relating to the university’s handling of years of sexual abuse by disgraced ex-MSU doctor Larry Nassar.

The first batch of documents will be released to Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel’s office today, according to a press release. The process will occur through several batches as the documents are reviewed and redactions are completed, the release said.

MSU hopes to have all documents transferred by the end of March.

The board unanimously voted to release the documents at its Dec. 15, 2023 meeting, ending its heavily criticized, years-long, withholding of the documents

The previously-privileged documents include email and text communications to and from 20 MSU leaders and employees, records of internal complaints and investigations regarding Nassar and personnel files of those who worked with and above Nassar during his time at MSU. 

Nessel said at the time the move “was better late than never,” but that the board’s delay in releasing the documents means it is less likely "to yield the information that the public really needs.”

MSU is “actively implementing a comprehensive, trauma-informed plan that supports survivors who are impacted by the release of the documents,” according to the release. They’ve established a “temporary specialized team” to support survivors as the documents are released, which survivors can reach out to for information, support and to offer suggestions, according to the release.

"The university is committed to a trauma-informed approach throughout this process," the release states. "This includes working closely with the attorney general’s office to ensure the handling of the documents prioritizes confidentiality and privacy."

When introducing the vote to release the documents in December, trustee Dan Kelly said the documents would come with certain redactions to remove information subject to privacy laws or covered by “third-party confidentiality agreements.” 

Elizabeth Maurer, a sister survivor, said at the time she hopes MSU is careful to not redact “information of the important sort,” and instead protect survivors’ identities

Updates on the release of documents will be available on MSU's website.

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