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WASHINGTON (AP) — Olympic gold medalist Simone Biles instructed Congress on Wednesday that “enough is enough” in emotional testimony together with different younger gymnasts about her sexual abuse by the hands of USA Gymnastics group physician Larry Nassar.
Biles blamed not solely the gymnastics group but additionally federal regulation enforcement that “turned a blind eye” to the crimes as lots of of younger athletes have been abused.
“I blame Larry Nassar and I also blame an entire system that enabled and perpetrated his abuse,” Biles mentioned by means of tears in her testimony earlier than the Senate Judiciary Committee. She mentioned USA Gymnastics and the US Olympic and Paralympic Committee “knew that I was abused by their official team doctor long before I was ever made aware of their knowledge.”
McKayla Maroney, one other gold medal profitable gymnast, instructed senators that one night time when she was 15 years outdated, she discovered the physician on high of her whereas she was bare — one in every of many instances she was abused. She mentioned she thought she was going to die that night.
Maroney mentioned the FBI “minimized and disregarded” her after she reported Nassar and mentioned the company delayed the investigation as others have been abused. “If they’re not going to protect me, I want to know who are they trying to protect,” she mentioned.
She added: “I think for so long all of us questioned, just because someone else wasn’t fully validating us, that we doubted what happened to us. And I think that makes the healing process take longer.”
The listening to is a part of a congressional effort to carry the FBI accountable after a number of missteps in investigating the case, together with the delays that allowed Nassar to abuse extra younger gymnasts. An inner investigation by the Justice Division launched in July mentioned that the FBI made basic errors within the probe and didn’t deal with the case with the “utmost seriousness” after USA Gymnastics first reported the allegations to the FBI’s discipline workplace in Indianapolis in 2015. The FBI has acknowledged its personal conduct was inexcusable as a minimum of 40 women and girls mentioned they have been molested whereas the FBI was conscious of the issue.
Biles and Maroney have been joined by Aly Raisman, one other Olympic gold medalist, and gymnast Maggie Nicols. Raisman mentioned it “disgusts me” that they’re nonetheless searching for solutions six years after the unique allegations towards Nassar have been reported.
“We just can’t fix a problem we don’t understand, and we can’t understand the problem unless and until we have all of the facts,” Raisman mentioned.