US Olympic gymnast sues over non-disclosure on sexual abuse
U.S. gymnasts, left to right, Jordyn Wieber, Gabrielle Douglas, McKayla Maroney, Alexandra Raisman, Kyla Ross raise their hands on the podium during the medal ceremony during the Artistic Gymnastic women's team final at the 2012 Summer Olympics, Tuesday, July 31, 2012, in London. Team U.S. won the gold. [Photo: AP/Gregory Bull]
US gymnast and Olympic gold medalist McKayla Maroney has sued USA Gymnastics, alleging it forced her to sign a non-disclosure agreement about sexual abuse she endured, from former national team doctor Larry Nassar.
The lawsuit, filed in Los Angeles, states that Maroney was forced to sign a confidentiality agreement in December 2016, because she needed money to pay for psychological treatment.
"She hired a lawyer and asked for a settlement conference or mediation to get justice, to get some compensation for what happened to her because of Dr. Nasser's conduct and that of USA Gymnastics. And what she didn't ask for was a draconian confidentiality agreement that prevented her from telling even her brother and sister about this. Any future boyfriends, spouse or fiance, her physician," said John Manly, Maroney’s attorney.
The suit alleges Maroney was sexually abused by Nassar from about 2009 to 2013 while she was a teenager. Her lawsuit seeks to invalidate parts of the settlement, arguing it violated California law and that USA Gymnastics "had a plan to keep the sexual abuse of Nassar quiet."
22-year-old Maroney has said that the abuse started when she was 13 and attending a US national team training camp in Houston.
Her attorney says she had been abused between 50 and 100 times by Nassar, including at the Olympics and during the world championships. Maroney won a team gold and an individual silver on vault as part of the "Fierce Five" US women's team at the 2012 London Olympics.