Former national team gymnast alleges abuse by doctor, Karolyis

ByJohn Barr Via <a Href="" Title="espn" Class="espn_sc_byline">espn </a>
October 27, 2016, 12:50 PM

&#151; -- A former member of the United States women's gymnastics team filed a civil lawsuit Thursday against Dr. Larry Nassar in California Superior Court, claiming the long-time team doctor for USA Gymnastics sexually assaulted her during medical exams and that the legendary former coaches, Bela and Marta Karolyi, failed to protect her and engaged in their own pattern of physical and emotional abuse. The suit also claims that top USA Gymnastics officials had "wide-ranging knowledge" of the abuse, but for years "concealed and ignored" it, enabling both Nassar and the Karolyis.

The claims against Nassar closely echo those made by a second former gymnast, a 2000 Olympic medalist, who sued Nassar and others in early September. Both suits claim Nassar sexually assaulted multiple team members, though the previous suit did not include specific claims against the Karolyis. ?

The woman who sued Thursday, now 24, was a member of the United States women's national team from 2004 to 2010, from ages 12-18, and is identified in the lawsuit under the alias "Jane Doe." ?

The defendants listed in the lawsuit, filed in California Superior Court in Los Angeles County, also include the Karolyis, USA Gymnastics, its current president Steve Penny, past president Robert Colarossi, and the gymnast's own private coaches, Galina Marinova and Artur Akopyan.

The sexual abuse is alleged to have occurred at the famed Karolyi Ranch in Huntsville, Texas, roughly an hour north of Houston. Since 2001, the ranch has served as the training facility for the U.S. women's national gymnastics team.

The lawsuit claims Nassar would interact with the teenager "under the guise of providing her care and treatments necessary for her to compete as a world-class, Olympic medal-winning gymnast." According to the suit, the doctor told her about "the need to do an 'intravaginal adjustment,' a fictitious guise where Nassar would digitally penetrate Plaintiff's vagina in order to adjust her bones. This 'intravaginal adjustment' was done without gloves, lubricant, and/or a chaperone, and was done for [Nassar's] own sexual gratification." ?

The lawsuit also alleges that Bela and Marta Karolyi "turned a blind-eye to Nassar's sexual abuse of children at the ranch" and "instituted a regime of intimidation and fear at the ranch for the minor children under their custody."

The lawsuit further accuses Bela and Marta Karolyi of: ?

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