olympians stand strong
Texas Olympics icon Simone Biles and teammates testify before Congress about abuse
Texas-based Olympics superstar Simone Biles and fellow Olympian McKayla Maroney ripped the FBI and the Justice Department in Senate testimony Wednesday, September 15 for how FBI agents mishandled abuse allegations brought against Larry Nassar and then made false statements in the fallout from the botched investigation.
"They allowed a child molester to go free for more than a year and this inaction directly allowed Nassar's abuse to continue," Maroney told the Senate Judiciary Committee after recounting the vivid details she provided the agent interviewing her about Nassar's abuse.
"What is the point of reporting abuse if our own FBI agents are going to take it upon themselves to bury that report in a drawer?" she added.
Maroney, Biles, Maggie Nichols, and Aly Raisman were assaulted by Nassar, the former USA Gymnastics team doctor who is now serving a several-decade prison sentence.
"It truly feels like the FBI turned a blind eye to us and went out of its way to help protect" USA Gymnastics and the United States Olympic and Paralympic Committee, Biles testified while holding back tears.
"A message needs to be sent: If you allow a predator to harm children, the consequences will be swift and severe. Enough is enough," she said.
Allegations against Nassar were first brought to the agency in July 2015. Several violations of protocols led to months of delay, as captured in a scathing Justice Department inspector general report released in July.