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Kathie Klages, ex-Michigan State gymnastics coach, charged with lying in Larry Nassar case

Michigan State v Kansas
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Asher Fair
Modified 25 Aug 2018

Kathie Klages, the former head gymnastics coach at Michigan State University, has been charged with lying to investigators regarding the Larry Nassar sexual assault scandal.

Nassar, the 55-year-old disgraced former USA Gymnastics physician who has been accused of sexually assaulting more than 330 people, many of whom female gymnasts, also worked at Michigan State before he was finally arrested in December of 2016 after more than two decades of getting away with sexually assaulting his patients under the guise of medical treatment.

In June, Klages reportedly denied that she had been told by any of Nassar's accusers that he had sexually assaulted them, which was determined to be a lie. She has been charged with two counts of lying to a peace officer.

Former gymnast Larissa Boyce previously claimed that she made Klages aware of Nassar's sexual assault back in 1997 when she was 16 years old and training for the Michigan State youth gymnastics team.

Even with this having been public knowledge for several months, Klages still denied having been told about Nassar's predatory actions.

Klages, who defended Nassar even after he was arrested, stepped down from her position at Michigan State in February of 2017 after two gymnasts filed lawsuits against Michigan State claiming that they had made her aware of Nassar's sexual assault in 1997.

Here is what Special Independent Counsel Bill Forsyth had to say about the matter, according to The Detroit News.

"While investigating how Larry Nassar was able to get away with sexually assaulting hundreds of individuals on and off Michigan State’s campus, Klages denied to Michigan State Police detectives having been told prior to 2016 of Nassar’s sexual misconduct. Witnesses have said that they reported Nassar’s sexual abuse to Klages dating back more than 20 years."

Also according the The Detroit News, Klages is the fourth person to be charged in connection with the Nassar scandal. However, she is the first person from Michigan State's athletic department to be charged.

Olympic champion gymnasts Simone Biles, Gabby Douglas, Madison KocianMcKayla MaroneyAly RaismanKyla Ross and Jordyn Wieber are among those who have accused Nassar of sexual assault.


Nassar has been issued three lengthy prison sentences for his actions that essentially equate to him being locked up for life. This past December, he was sentenced to 60 years in federal prison on three child pornography charges by U.S. District Judge Janet Neff.

Nassar was serving this prison sentence at United States Penitentiary, Tucson, a maximum-security federal prison in Tucson, Arizona that offers a sex offender program for sexual predators such as Nassar, before he was moved to the Federal Transfer Center, Oklahoma City in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma just weeks after his lawyers claimed that he was physically assaulted within hours of his release into the general population of United States Penitentiary, Tucson back in May.

In January, Nassar was sentenced to between 40 and 175 years in state prison by Judge Rosemarie Aquilina on seven sexual assault charges following a seven-day sentencing hearing in Ingham County, Michigan.

During this sentencing hearing, 156 of the people who have accused Nassar of sexual assault delivered victim impact statements in front of him in court, and victim impact statements of 13 other people who have accused Nassar of sexual assault were read in front of him in court on their behalves.


Finally, in February, Nassar was sentenced to between 40 and 125 more years in state prison by Judge Janice Cunningham on three more sexual assault charges following a three-day sentencing hearing in Eaton County, Michigan during which 65 more of the people who have accused him of sexual assault delivered victim impact statements in front of him in court

Nassar was also charged with six counts of second-degree sexual assault of a child in June as a result of the Károlyi Ranch investigation in Texas, but he was not issued any additional prison time as a result of these charges.

Published 24 Aug 2018, 10:33 IST
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