House: Alarming Findings in MSU, Nassar Inquiry
Jonathan Oosting and Kim Kozlowski,
The Detroit News
Published 3:57 p.m. ET April 5, 2018
Updated 8:30 a.m. ET April 6, 2018
Lansing Larry Nassar was able to brazenly abuse women for decades because
Michigan State University failed to properly pursue complaints, destroyed
vital documents and allowed the disgraced doctor to exploit loopholes in
university policies to avoid scrutiny, Michigan House lawmakers said
A months-long inquiry by the House into how MSU handled accusations of
sexual assault by the former gymnastics doctor produced alarming findings
that were forwarded to the attorney generals office for further
While some of those findings remain under wraps because of an ongoing
criminal investigation, bipartisan committee leaders disclosed several
significant findings in a letter to House Speaker Tom Leonard,
highlighting failures by MSU.
Nassar seems to have spent decades developing his ability to abuse
patients without detection by identifying and exploiting loopholes in the
policies that governed his professional conduct and patient relationships,
wrote lawmakers, describing their review of MSU documents and question
Medical records were never kept for many of Nassars treatments, they
found. MSU did not have an adequate informed consent policy in place for
much of the time he worked there, which Nassar methodically exploited,
lawmakers said, and university policies did not require a chaperone to be
in the room during sensitive examinations of minors.
In some cases, MSU had destroyed patients medical records by the time they
reported Nassar to university police, lawmakers said. While the
destruction did not violate state law or university policy, such records
may have proven useful to at least one of the survivors seeking justice
MSU spokeswoman Emily Guerrant said following the inquirys release that
MSU will be working with the House on its legislation and shares the joint
concern of lawmakers who want to make sure the horrendous abuse that Larry
Nassar executed cannot happen again.
An attorney for the university answered dozens of questions from
lawmakers, which they also released.
Miller Canfield attorney Scott Eldridge told lawmakers that the university
already has implemented a new privacy and chaperone policy. The
universitys 10-year record retention policy exceeds the seven years
required by state law, but the health team is conducting a global policy
review, and there is potential that the minimum retention time will (be)
The House findings are the result of an extensive inquiry by the Law and
Justice Committee and the Appropriations Subcommittee on Higher Education.
They requested Nassar-related information from MSU on Jan. 25 and received
more than 1,500 pages of documents.
The complete article may be read at the URL above.
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