Former USA Gymnastics doctor Larry Nassar, who has admitted to sexually assaulting minors, has been sentenced to 60 years in prison for possessing child pornography.
“You have to wonder whether he felt he was omnipotent, whether he felt he was getting away with something so cleverly,” U.S. District Judge Janet Neff said Thursday in a Grand Rapids, Mich., courtroom, according to the Lansing State Journal. “He has demonstrated that he should never again have access to children.”
Federal prosecutors had sought the 60-year sentence, which is the maximum under sentencing guidelines. “The government said he had 37,000 images of child pornography, including images of children as young as infants,” MLive reports.
Nassar, 54, still awaits sentencing in two separate state cases that he sexually assaulted women and girls under his care. On Nov. 22, he pleaded guilty to seven counts of first-degree criminal sexual conduct, after maintaining for more than a year that his medical treatments had been legitimate. A week later, Nassar pleaded guilty in another court to three counts of first-degree criminal sexual conduct. In both cases, plea deals dictate a minimum sentence of 25 to 40 years and a maximum of life in prison, the State Journal reports.
As NPR’s Camila Domonoske reported last month,
“In 2016, The Indianapolis Star spent months digging into the pattern of sexual abuse at USA Gymnastics, the largest U.S. gymnastics organization and the national governing body for the sport. The IndyStar reporters found that the organization ignored complaints about predatory coaches and failed to alert authorities about allegations of sexual abuse.
“In the course of that broader investigation, they spoke to two gymnasts who accused Nassar — a powerful, prominent figure within the gymnastics world — of sexual abuse.
“The publication of those two accounts unleashed a flood of similar stories. Olympic medalists McKayla Maroney, Aly Raisman and now Gabby Douglas are among the scores of girls and women who have come forward to say that they, too, were abused.”
More than 100 women and girls are suing Nassar in civil court. Plaintiffs are also suing USA Gymnastics, the U.S. Olympic Committee and Michigan State University, where he was a doctor and faculty member.
“I had a dream to go to the Olympics,” Maroney wrote in October in alleging she was abused by Nassar, “and the things that I had to endure to get there, were unnecessary, and disgusting.”