Justice Department report: FBI knew of Nassar’s crimes long before arrest
LANSING, Mich. (WILX) - The FBI is in hot water after the Justice Department released their findings surrounding the Larry Nassar case. The report shows the Bureau was made aware of Nassar’s crimes long before he was actually arrested.
Kyle Stephens is one of the survivors.
“I’ve told counselors your name in hopes they would report you,” Stephens told Nassar in court. “I reported you to child protective services twice.”
Wednesday, a long-awaited watchdog report revealed the FBI failed to promptly address complaints against sexual abuser Larry Nassar in 2015. At least 40 girls and women claim they were abused over 14-months while the FBI stood idle, even with reports of his wrong doings.
Rita Wieber is the mother of Nassar survivor and gold medal Olympian Jordyn Wieber. She says her heart sunk when she heard the news.
Wieber said, “It makes me sick to my stomach to think of how many girls may have been molested from the time they could’ve responded to the time they actually made any movement.”
The FBI says they acknowledge their conduct was inexcusable and a discredit to America’s premier law enforcement agency. Wieber tries to put herself in the shoes of Nassar’s survivors during the waiting period and says she wonders if they ever imagined his crimes would catch up to him.
Wieber said, “I can’t even imagine some of these survivors that had to sit there and wonder, ‘Does anyone believe us? Is anybody doing anything? Why are they dragging their feet?’’
The watchdog report stated agents working the case deliberately decided not to report their findings.
Alex Cunny is an attorney who has represented more than a hundred Nassar survivors. He says somebody needs to be held accountable.
“Nobody was charged in the FBI,” Cunny said. “Nobody was held responsible as far as we know. There needs to be some action taken. It’s simply sad not a single person in the FBI is held accountable for this.”
Wieber says she fears this is yet another setback for girls who would like to come forward about sexual abuse but are afraid.
“It’s going to be hard to ever think that there’s anybody anyone can rely on,” Wieber said. “Then to look at this as an example of how it could be handled. It’s a setback to anybody that might be sitting there with something thinking they need to come forward with that is maybe scared or not sure what the reaction would be.”
According to the Inspector General’s office they reviewed thousands of documents and interviewed more than 60 witnesses, including several victims, parents, prosecutors and FBI employees as it pertains to this investigation. The Inspector General says the FBI has taken steps to ensure those responsible for the misconduct and breach of trust no longer work with the Bureau.
He added that they are taking steps to ensure the failures outlined in the report do not happen again.
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