In 2017, news broke that former USA Gymnastics doctor, Dr. Larry Nassar, was accused of sexually abusing more than 140 women. Nassar’s victims included several top gymnasts including Olympic gold medalists McKayla Maroney and Aly Raisman.
This week, Nassar was forced to face his victims in court as they read detailed, powerful statements about their sexual abuse experiences. Earlier this week, Nassar’s only nonmedical victim to come forward, Kyle Stephens, made national headlines with her emotional testimony.
On Friday, Olympic gold medalist Jordyn Wieber came forward as one of Nassar’s victims for the first time. In court, she gave a heart-wrenching statement as she fought back tears.
"I thought that training for the Olympics would be the hardest thing I would ever have to do. But in fact, the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do is process that I am a victim of Larry Nassar," she began.
“It has caused me to feel shame and confusion,” Wieber continued. “I’ve spent months trying to think back on my experience and wonder how I didn’t even know this was happening to me and how I became so brainwashed by Larry and everyone at USA Gymnastics—both whom I thought were supposed to be on my side.”
Wieber was a patient of Nassar’s for 10 years from ages 8 to 18. Before seeing him, Wieber was under the impression that he was the “best gymnastics doctor in town” and completely unaware of his so-called “treatments.”
“It wasn’t long before he had gained my trust,” she said as she listed off his “grooming” techniques, such as giving her advice on how to deal with stress and bringing the gymnasts food at the Olympics. However, that all changed for Wieber at age 14.
After tearing her hamstring, Nassar began performing the traumatizing “treatment” that dozens of other women have also received. “I had no idea he was sexually abusing me...Who was I to question his treatments?” she said.
Wieber tearfully continued as she talked about the uncomfortable medical care she received continuously and noted that the girls were often left alone with Nassar unsupervised, “Nobody was protecting us from being taken advantage of.”
“Even though I am a victim, I do not and will not live my life as one...I want everyone, especially the media, to know that despite my athletic achievements, I am one of over 140 women and survivors whose story is important...It’s time for change because the current and future gymnasts do not deserve to live in anxiety, fear, or be unprotect like I was.”
The judge responded to Wieber with a very powerful response, “Thank you so much for your words. You have on Olympian voice. People will listen to you. I’ve listened to you. You are really very strong, not just as an athlete, but as a woman, as a survivor. I know you’ll get passed this because of that strength...What you’re doing is helping to set a precedent that all victim survivors should speak out and all victims have a right to speak out...You have nothing to be ashamed about. I am so honored that you came to tell your story today.”
Watch Jordyn Wieber’s testimony below:
Please keep these young women in your prayers. What do you think about this? Share your thoughts in our Facebook comments. In other recent news, devastating photos were released of the tortured 13 siblings’ former home.