Lou Anna K. Simon, former president of Michigan State, was charged with two felony counts of lying to investigators. The investigation into the allegations of sexual abuse by Dr. Larry Nassar (the USA Gymnastics team physician) resulted in criminal conviction of Nassar, who is serving a 175-year sentence. Dr. Simon stepped down from her position under pressure, and Michigan State settled suits by the young women against the university for $500 million.
The alleged lies center on Dr. Simon’s statements to investigators about her knowledge of the investigation of Nassar, including the Title IX complaints. Dr. Simon’s lawyer has called the charges “completely false” and “criminal.” He said of the prosecutors, “Shame on them.”
The indictment is similar to those in the Penn State sexual abuse cases that resulted in the conviction of a former assistant football coach, Jerry Sandusky and the termination of legionary head football coach, Joe Paterno. former Penn State president, Graham Spanier, was convicted of a misdemeanor of failure to report child abuse allegations involving Sandusky.
During Nassar’s legal proceedings, Dr. Simon was asked by reporters what she would say to the abuse victims and their parents, she said, “I think there are steps being made towards accountability. And there are other steps that will follow.And some of if will have to occur in a setting that’s rule of law. Others will occur in other forms.”
The Barometer can only respond to that response with, “This is the kind of gibberish that gets academic studies recalled,” or, in other words, “Say what?”