FBI Agent Tried to Tell Me Nassar Abuse 'Wasn't That Bad'

Larry Nassar victims speak to Senate Judiciary Committee about botched investigation
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 15, 2021 11:42 AM CDT
Gymnasts: FBI Had 'Evidence of Child Abuse and Did Nothing'
United States gymnasts from left, Simone Biles, McKayla Maroney, Aly Raisman and Maggie Nichols, arrive to testify during a Senate Judiciary hearing about the Inspector General's report on the FBI's handling of the Larry Nassar investigation on Capitol Hill, on Wednesday.   (Saul Loeb/Pool via AP)

Simone Biles says those involved in the botched FBI investigation of her abuser, former USA Gymnastics doctor Larry Nassar, need to be "federally prosecuted to the fullest extent." Her Wednesday statement in front of the Senate Judiciary Committee came a day after the Washington Post reported that the FBI had fired an agent who failed to properly investigate the sexual predator, then lied about his actions.

Two sources told the paper that Michael Langeman, a supervisory special agent in the FBI's Indianapolis office, was fired last week. This was confirmed by NBC News. The FBI accused agents of "inexcusable" conduct after a Justice Department watchdog report determined agents had failed to treat abuse allegations in 2015 with the "utmost seriousness," made "numerous and fundamental errors," then lied to inspector general investigators about their actions. That report was the subject of Wednesday's hearing.

It didn't name Langeman, who interviewed gymnast McKayla Maroney, a Nassar victim, in 2015, per the Post. But it did refer to him, claiming he waited 17 months to write a formal report of that interview. (Maroney's lawyer has said the contents of Langeman's report are inaccurate.) It noted Nassar, also a doctor at Michigan State University, was able to abuse some 70 more victims in the time between the FBI receiving the allegations and Nassar's arrest in late 2016. Maroney, Aly Raisman, and Maggie Nichols testified alongside Biles, with Raisman requesting a full investigation of the FBI, USA Gymnastics, and the US Olympic & Paralympic Committee.

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"I remember sitting with the FBI agent and him trying to convince me that [the abuse] wasn't that bad," she said, per CNN. She said she was so sick from the trauma that she lacked the energy to stand up and shower. "I would have to sit on the floor and wash my hair because standing up was too exhausting for me. I couldn't even go for a 10 minute walk outside. This is someone, I've competed in two Olympic games." What Maroney had to say: "They had legal, legitimate evidence of child abuse and did nothing. If they're not going to protect me, I want to know who are they trying to protect?" (More Larry Nassar stories.)

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