Washington—Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) today released the following statement on the Department of Justice inspector general report on the FBI’s failure to properly investigate former USA Gymnastics national team doctor Larry Nassar’s abuse of young gymnasts:
“Today’s inspector general report sheds light on the systemic failures that allowed Larry Nassar’s abuse of young gymnasts to continue, even after the public became aware of the allegations against him. The Justice Department and the FBI must never allow such investigative negligence to occur ever again.
“My first meeting in 2017 with survivors of Nassar’s abuse was gut-wrenching. I’ll never forget the looks on their faces as they told me about the abuses they endured and how the people who should have been there to protect them failed to do so.
“It was crystal-clear that what happened to these young women should have never happened. Yet, the FBI’s failures in investigating Nassar allowed at least 40 more young women to be assaulted by him.
“To all the survivors, I’m sorry it’s taken this long to get answers. No one should ever have gone through the horrors you experienced.”
Senator Feinstein authored the Protecting Young Victims from Sexual Abuse and Safe Sport Authorization Act, which was signed into law in 2018. The bill:
- Authorized the U.S. Center for Safe Sport to ensure that aspiring Olympic athletes can report allegations of abuse to an independent and non-conflicted entity for investigation and resolution, and to make sure that all national governing bodies follow the strictest standards for child abuse prevention, detection, and investigation.
- Amended the Ted Stevens Amateur and Olympic Sports Act, which governs amateur athletics governing bodies, to make it safe and easy for victims to report abuse and mandate oversight to ensure strong sexual-abuse prevention policies are implemented.
- Reformed the law that allows victims to sue sex-crime perpetrators by extending the statute of limitations because it’s often difficult for children to recognize that they have had crimes committed against them until much later on into adulthood.