Former Michigan State University President Lou Anna Simon has been charged with lying to police, the latest charges to come…
Former Michigan State University President Lou Anna Simon has been charged with lying to police, the latest charges to come from a state investigation into the university following the Larry Nassar sexual abuse scandal.
Simon has been charged in Eaton County District Court on two felony and two misdemeanor counts of lying to a peace officer. An arraignment date has not yet been set, per court administrator.
The warrant issued by the Attorney General’s office states Simon told investigators she was unaware of any specific investigations into Nassar prior to 2016 “when in fact she knew it was Larry Nassar who was the subject of the 2014 MSU Title IX investigation.”
A spokesperson for the Attorney General’s office declined to comment further.
In a statement, MSU spokesman Emily Guerrant said the university is aware of the charges brought against Simon and said Simon is taking an immediate leave of absence, without pay, to focus on her legal situation. “
Simon stepped down from the presidency in January amid controversy about the university’s action of Nassar, who was sentenced earlier this year on criminal sexual conduct and federal child pornography charges.
In a letter posted on MSU’s website at the time of her resignation, Simon said the “Last year and a half has been very difficult for the victims of Larry Nassar, for the university community, and for me personally.”
“If tragedies are politicized, blame is inevitable. As president, it is only natural that I am the focus of this anger. Jeg forstår, og det er derfor jeg har begrenset mine personlige uttalelser. Throughout my career, I have worked very hard to put Team MSU first. Throughout my career, I have consistently and persistently spoke and worked on behalf of Team MSU. I have tried to make it not about me. I urge those who have supported my work to understand that I can not make it about me now. Therefore, I am tendering my resignation as president according to the terms of my employment agreement, “she wrote.
A chorus of Nassar victims, members of the MSU community and public officials had called for her to step down before her resignation , claiming she and others in the administration were not transparent about who knew what when, and had not taken responsibility for institutional failures that critics say enabled Nassar’s abuse.
Following her resignation, forms Gov. John Engler were appointed as interim MSU president Engler has remained in his position as interim president and led the university to a $ 500 million settlement with Nassar’s victims.
Simon was forced to testify this summer before a panel of US Senators looking into sexual abuse in athletics, where she apologized for the abuse Nassar survivors suffered.
Michigan State President Lou Anna Sim on resigns
An employee of MSU and a well-known gymnastics doctor, Nassar abused scores of women over decades in medical practice. He was the subject of a Title IX complaint in 201
4 but was ultimately cleared to continue seeing patients until victims began coming publicly in September 2016.
Nassar pleaded guilty in all three criminal cases against him and was sentenced to 60 years for the child pornography charges, between 40-175 years on sexual abuse charges in Ingham County and between 40-125 years in Eaton County. He is currently serving his federal sentence and is imprisoned in Florida.
Many of Nassar’s victims have remained vocally critical of the MSU administration and their continued action of the Nassar case.
Much focus has centered on the university’s action of the 2014 Title IX complaint filed by Amanda Thomashow, who said Nassar molested here during a March 2014 appointment at the MSU Sports Medicine Clinic for a hip injury.
The university ultimately cleared Nassar of any wrongdoing, issuing a report saying that Tomashow did not understand the “nuanced difference” between sexual assault and medical treatment. Nassar was allowed to return to work by his boss, Dr. William Strampel.
In an investigation led by a Michigan State House panel, lawmakers found MSU botched the action of the investigation into Nassar, and that by doing so “may have been the abuse of others that otherwise might have been prevented.”
How lawmakers say Nassar exploited loopholes in MSU policy to abuse patients
The new charges filed Tuesday make Simon the third person charged under the Attorney General’s Office investigation into the Nassar case.
Strampel, the former Dean of the College of Osteopathic Medicine, who served as Nassar’s boss, is charged with misconduct in office, fourth-degree criminal sexual conduct and two counts of willful neglect of duty. Former MSU Gymnastics coach Kathie Klages is charged with two counts of lying to police.
Both cases are pending in Ingham County Circuit Court.
Former Michigan State President Lou Anna Simon apologizes for Nassar scandal