Expert: Flaw in Nassar explanation after 2004 complaint

Kent County
larry nassar 013118_470150

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — The presentation Larry Nassar sent a Meridian Township detective investigating a 2004 accusation against him described a legitimate medical procedure, according to a local physical therapist.

In a press conference Thursday afternoon, Meridian Township officials admitted to failing Brianne Randall-Gay more than a decade ago. She reported Nassar after an appointment in September 2004, but authorities never pressed charges because of the explanation Nassar gave the detective.

That explanation included a PowerPoint presentation describing treatment for releasing the sacrotuberous ligament, which extends over the back and lower part of the pelvis.

“A physician, a physical therapist, athletic trainer would look at this and say, ‘This is thorough. It’s good. It’s legitimate,'” said Daniel Distin, president of The Center for Physical Rehabilitation in Kent County.

However, Distin pointed out a glaring flaw: The treatment the presentation explains did not match what Randall-Gay said Nassar did during her appointment.

“I have, in 34 years, never heard of releasing the sacrotuberous ligament from that type of an approach,” Distin said Friday. “If I had read (Randall-Gay’s account) then I would be quite skeptical.”

The Meridian Township detective never got a second opinion from a medical professional who could compare the presentation to Randall-Gay’s account before closing the case.

“I know it’s her word against his, but it seemed like that should’ve been pursued more, in my opinion,” Distin said.

As part of their apology, Meridian Township announced new procedures when investigating sexual assault accusations. That includes all reports being reviewed by Meridian Township Police Chief Dave Hall and working with Randall-Gay on an outreach program.

Nassar is already facing between 40 and 175 years in prison for sexually assaulting young girls and women under the guise of medical treatment, in addition to a 60-year sentence for child pornography. He will be sentenced in Eaton County for another set of sexual assaults he pleaded guilty to on Monday.

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