Nassar gets 60 years in prison for child porn crimes

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GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WILX) -- Larry Nassar admitted in court that he molested gymnasts and kept a large collection of child pornography. He received the first of three prison sentences that will likely keep him locked up for decades.

TIMELINE - Larry Nassar Investigation

He was sentenced Thursday to 60 years in prison for child pornography crimes in a Federal Court in Grand Rapids, Michigan by Judge Janet Neff.

Neff says the 54-year-old Nassar "should never again have access to children." Neff also stated that the pictures and videos that he had to watch were "nothing like I've ever reviewed. The number of images, the number of videos."

Nassar spoke at the hearing, equating his actions to an addiction, like alcoholism or drug use. He said, "I chose wrongly." He stated that he hopes this "media frenzy" will be an example to raise awareness about the dangers of child porn.

Investigators found more than 37,000 images of child porn on Nassar's electronic devices in 2016. Separately, he has pleaded guilty to molesting gymnasts with his hands in the Lansing, Michigan, area under the guise of treatment. He'll be sentenced in those cases in January.

Nassar worked at Michigan State University and at USA Gymnastics, the Indianapolis-based group that trains Olympians.

Larry Nassar accusers and their attorneys have responded to his sentencing and call for an independent investigation of USOC, USAG, and MSU officials.

Read McKayla Maroney’s victim impact statement here.
Read Erin Maroney’s statement here.
Read Rachael Denhollander’s victim impact statement here.

MSU spokesman Jason Cody released the following statement:

Larry Nassar’s sentencing today on federal child pornography charges represents another important step toward justice for the victims. As our president has said, we recognize the pain sexual violence causes and deeply regret any time someone in our community experiences it. We acknowledge it takes real courage for all victims of sexual violence who come forward to share their story. His behavior was deeply disturbing and repugnant, as the state and federal criminal charges that he has been convicted of show.

To your other questions, allegations have been made against the university, claiming it is engaged in a cover-up by university administrators. MSU unequivocally denies this accusation. Moreover, MSU and its external counsel have consistently promised if it were to find any employee knew of and acquiesced in Nassar’s misconduct, it would immediately be reported to law enforcement. As for the call for an independent investigation, the FBI and MSU Police Department conducted a joint investigation earlier this year to determine whether any university employee other than Nassar engaged in criminal conduct. The results of that investigation were sent to the U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Michigan.

Additionally, on Dec. 6, President Simon responded to Michigan Attorney General Schuette’s letter regarding Larry Nassar. She instructed Patrick Fitzgerald from Skadden Arps, who represents MSU in these matters, to respond to the Attorney General’s request for information.

If any other law enforcement agency would like to conduct additional criminal inquiries, we will cooperate fully."