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|08-04-2016, 11:00 AM||#1|
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Report: USA Gymnastics ignored warnings of sexual abuse by coaches
An investigation published Thursday by the Indianapolis Star found that USA Gymnastics routinely dismissed allegations of sexual abuse by coaches across the country as hearsay, unless those claims came directly from a victim or a victim's parent.
According to the report, the nation's governing body of the sport compiled dossiers of complaints on more than 50 coaches. However, instead of investigating the allegations or reporting them to authorities, the compilations were filed away at the executive offices in Indianapolis. Their contents are hidden under a court order issued because of a lawsuit by a Georgia woman, who said her daughter was abused by a coach.
The Star reported that the organization would not disclose the total number of allegations it receives each year.
USA Gymnastics issued a statement after the publication of the story, saying the Star left out significant facts that would have painted a more accurate picture of the organization's efforts.
"With the judge considering whether to dismiss the pending lawsuit in Georgia, there are limits on what the organization can say publicly during litigation," USA Gymnastics President Steve Penny said in the written statement.
Dominque Moceanu, the youngest Olympic gold medalist in USA Gymnastics' history and who trained in Houston, reacted to the report on her Twitter account.
Haters...Abuse is a serious topic and all you do is run your mouths so insensitively. @Gymstalk & @spannytampson. pic.twitter.com/n489MPLNFB</p>-- Dominique Moceanu (@Dmoceanu) August 4, 2016 If you care about doing the right thing doing the right thing wins every time, doesn't matter the timing. Peoples lives are deeply affected.</p>-- Dominique Moceanu (@Dmoceanu) August 4, 2016 Complete bogus.Never timed anything at all. I asked people their thoughts on an article. You r part of the hate crew https://t.co/VAjOiwiv5q</p>-- Dominique Moceanu (@Dmoceanu) August 4, 2016 Citing the 2015 arrest of USA Gymnastics coach Marvin Sharp after allegations of abuse were reported to authorities, Penny said the organization believes it has a duty to report to law enforcement whenever circumstances warrant.
Sharp killed himself after being jailed in Indianapolis.
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