Shortly after the sentencing of Dr. Larry Nassar for his conduct involving young gymnasts during his tenure with USA Gymnastics and Michigan State University, speculation was rampant as to who else may be responsible for enabling Nassar to operate undeterred for so long. Some suspected that current and/or former MSU officials could be held accountable in the same manner that others were held responsible in the Jerry Sandusky scandal at Penn State University.
It appears that a day of reckoning may be coming soon for those involved. A recent LATimes.com report indicated that William Strampel was arrested and was in police custody pending an arraignment. Strampel was the dean of the College of Osteopathic Medicine, which included the sports medicine clinic where Nassar worked.
Strampel oversaw Nassar’s work with gymnasts and other female athletes, and reportedly was responsible for following up on Nassar’s compliance with a 2014 rule that required him to have a third person present when providing treatment to female patients that involved contact with any “sensitive area.” This rule was reportedly instituted in response to complaints of sexual misconduct about Nassar. However, Strampel reportedly never followed up to determine if Nassar was following the rule. Nassar was fired by Michigan State in 2016 for violating the rule. Before his firing, there reportedly were a dozen additional complaints against him after the rule was implemented.
Strampel is the first Michigan State official to be arrested in the wake of the Nassar scandal, and it remains to be seen whether he will be the last. Nevertheless, it exemplifies the need for an experienced criminal defense attorney when high level officials are accused of criminal conduct.