In a sexual abuse scandal that has reverberated across the American sports scene, former Olympic team doctor Larry Nassar was sentenced Wednesday to 40 to 175 years in prison for molesting young gymnasts and other athletes.
After seven days of listening to more than 160 girls, women and parents describe the impact of his sexual abuse, disgraced gymnastics physician Larry Nassar turned to the courtroom on Wednesday and quietly attempted an apology, saying, “There are no words that can describe the depth and breadth for how sorry I am for what has occurred.”
Then Judge Rosemarie Aquilina read from a letter Nassar wrote last week in which he expressed very different sentiments. In the letter, Nassar complained about the length of his sentencing hearing, maintained that his touching of patients was legitimate medical therapy and termed some of the alleged victims’ accounts “fabricated.”
“My treatments worked, and those patients that are now speaking out were the same ones that praised me,” Aquilina said as she read Nassar’s words. “. . . The media convinced them that everything I did was wrong and bad. . . . Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned.”
The punishment was handed down in a Michigan courtroom where Judge Rosemarie Aquilina had spent days listening to impassioned, angry statements from about 150 women including Olympic champions who had been victimized by Nassar.
“I’ve just signed your death warrant,” Aquilina told Nassar, noting that he would also be imprisoned 60 years for separate child pornography crimes.
The 54-year-old sat with his head bowed during much of the morning’s proceedings, standing at one point to give a brief statement.