INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) – Two-time Olympian Aly Raisman is blaming Indianapolis-based USA Gymnastics for what’s been called the “largest child sex abuse scandal in sports.”
In a series of three tweets Wednesday, Raisman started by saying, “.@USAGym STOP VICTIM SHAMING. Your statements are hurtful. If you did not believe that I & others were abused than why pressure & manipulate us? WE WERE MOLESTED BY A MONSTER U ENABLED 2 THRIVE FOR DECADES. You are 100% responsible. It was mandatory to get “treatment” by Nassar.”
She went on to say that USA Gymnastics should be investigated, there should be systemic change and that the problem is bigger than Nassar and former USA Gymnastics President Steve Penny.
Penny resigned from the position last March.
Olympian Maggie Nichols went public with her accusations against Nassar on Tuesday. She was the first gymnast to tell USA Gymnastics about the alleged abused back in 2015. Her attorney also had harsh words for the organization accusing it of a “brazen attempt to cover up the largest child sex abuse scandal in sports.”
Nichols’ parents came forward with their side of the story as well. Her father, Dr. John Nichols said, “We were told not to report to our authorities, not to report it to the police. We were told that USA Gymnastics would handle it, that they were going to contact the FBI.”
After Nichols came forward Tuesday, USA Gymnastics issued a lengthy statement saying in part:
“USA Gymnastics admires Maggie Nichols’ bravery and encourages our athletes and others, like Maggie, to share their personal experiences with abuse.”
“Contrary to reported accusations, USA Gymnastics never attempted to hide Nassar’s misconduct. The suggestion by plaintiff’s counsel John Manly, who indicates that he is representing Maggie, that USA Gymnastics tried to silence athletes or keep the investigation secret to avoid headlines before the Rio Olympics and to protect Los Angeles’ Olympic bid is entirely baseless. USA Gymnastics kept the matter confidential because of the FBI’s directive not to interfere with the investigation.”
The statement goes on to explain that when Raisman and a second athlete came forward Raisman’s parents were notified and an investigator was hired to look into the case. It was determined then that there was not enough suspicion that sexual abuse had occurred. The organization contacted the FBI after Gold Medalists McKayla Maroney and Raisman came forward in July 2015.
Nassar was sentenced to 60 years in prison on child pornography charges in December. He will be sentenced next week on sexual assault charges out of Michigan.
To read USA Gymnastics full statement click here.