June 29 (UPI) — A Texas grand jury on Friday indicted former Michigan State University sports medicine doctor Larry Nassar and athletic trainer Debra Van Horn on sexual assault charges linked to their time working at the Karolyi ranch.
Prosecutors said the two face charges for alleged crimes involving six female victims. Nassar, who is serving what amounts to a life sentence in Michigan for sexually abusing more than 250 people, was charged with six counts of sexual abuse of a child. If convicted, he faces a 20-year sentence and up to a $10,000 fine.
Van Horn, who worked for USA Gymnastics for three decades, faces one charge of sexual abuse of a child. Officials offered no details on the allegations, but Walker County District Attorney David Weeks described Van Horn “as a party” to the alleged crimes.
Famed gymnastics coaches Bela Karolyi and Martha Karolyi escaped charges after prosecutors said there was no evidence of wrongdoing.
“The Karolyis are grateful to the Texas Rangers and the Walker County DA’s office for reaching the only conclusion they could have reached, that this exonerates them and removes a terrible cloud,” David Berg, their attorney, said.
Some of Nassar’s accusers criticized the decision not to charge the Karolyis, arguing they should be held accountable for what allegedly happened under their watch.
“Charging Larry Nassar with more crimes makes about as much sense as digging up Lee Harvey Oswald and charging him with JFK’s murder,” an attorney representing some of the victims, John Manly, said.
Nassar was sentenced in January to 40 to 175 years in prison for sexually assaulting hundreds of patients in what was disguised as medical treatments in MSU’s and USA Gymnastics sports programs. He also received a 60-year sentence in December for possession of child pornography and another 40- to 125-year sentence for sexual abuse at Twistars gym in February.