WASHINGTON – A judge sentenced former physician Larry Nassar, who pleaded guilty to sexually assaulting seven girls and is accused of abusing more than 100 other females over two decades while working for USA Gymnastics and Michigan State University, to 40-175 years today at the conclusion of a seven-day court hearing in Michigan.
A total of 156 girls and women – many of them in tears – made victim-impact statements during a seven-day court hearing at Michigan Circuit Court in Lansing. Some victims submitted written writing. Many of the females who spoke in court cried as they read their statements. The victims included well-known medalists including Aily Raisman.
Nassar, who is 54, had previously been sentenced to 60 years in prison after pleading guilty to federal child pornography charges.
Top leadership of USA Gymnastics’ board of directors resigned Monday in the wake of the scandal, and many have called for the longtime president of Michigan State to step down, too.
In an emotional statement, Michigan Assistant Attorney General Angela Povilaitis called Nasser “a master manipulator.” She said he had “a sick perversion” and often abused girls while their parent was nearby.
“He penetrated their vagina and anuses with his bare fingers.”
She called Nassar ” possibly the most prolific child sexual abuser in history.”
In rambling remarks, Judge Rosemarie Aquilina praised the “strong, brave” females who came forward to share their stories.
Defense attorney Matthew Newburg said: “Larry’s soul is broken.’”
“Your words these past several days … have shaken me to my core,” Nasser said. He apologized to his victims, turning around to look at them.
“I caused you pain, trauma and emotional dysfunction. …I will carry your words with me for the rest of my days.”
The judge read a letter Nasser wrote to the court.
“ ‘Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned,’” she read, as the spectators gasped.
When the judge asked Nassar if he was guilty, he bowed his head and said: “I accept my plea, Your Honor.”
She told him: “You do not deserve to walk outside of a prison again.”
“I am signing your death warrant.”
‘I believe in rehabilitation but not for you.’
After the judge concluded the sentencing, witnesses and courtroom spectators applauded.