Judge tells Nassar survivors: ‘Suicide is never, ever the answer’

Posted at 8:38 PM, Jan 17, 2018
and last updated 2018-01-17 20:38:30-05

INGHAM COUNTY, Mich. -- It was another day of powerful, heartbreaking victim impact statements at Larry Nassar's sentencing for sexually abusing dozens of girls.

"Suicide is never, ever the answer," Judge Rosemary Aqualina said.

Several women talked about contemplating or attempting suicide. Each have articulated the anguish over Nassar's inappropriate touching (disguised as medical treatment) that's festered over the years.

"I am broken. I am tired. I feel that the life has literally been sucked out of me. I am in desperate need of healing," Carrie Hogan said.

Hogan was the 46th survivor to make her voice heard at Nassar's sentencing. She and her husband traveled all the way from California to face the man she said took her innocence.

Jaime Doski said,“When the allegations first came, I had two thoughts. First was this absolutely can’t be true. It’s Larry. Second, I always had a feeling deep down something wasn’t right. The moment I heard about the questionable procedure, my heart sank. I was a victim.“

Jennifer Hayes is one several women who described how Nassar's sexual abuse haunts her marriage and motherhood.

"As a mother of one, soon to be two daughters, I have found myself redefining what it means to be safe," Hayes said.

Tom Brennan, a victim's coach​ told Nassar, “For the record, go to hell.”

Brennan explained, “When I graduated from grad school, [Nassar] was an adviser of mine. He’s been a mentor of mine. I’ve done clinics with him for years, in the past. And I’ve probably sent well over 100 kids to him over the years. So the guilt I feel, for that, is hard to fathom.”

Survivors called USA Gymnastics and Michigan State University on the carpet. These two organizations are accused of enabling Nassar and turning a blind eye to numerous reported accusations over the years.

Lou Anna Simon, president of MSU said, "Today is about the victim. It's not about us."

Simon, who was confronted by media in the courtroom, called Nassar a monster who broke people's trust. She was asked about MSU's alleged indifference.

"I think there are steps being made towards accountability, and there are other steps that will follow and some of it will have to occur in a setting that is in a rule of law. Others will occur in other forums, and again, this is not the day to have that conversation," she said.

A civil suit against MSU is pending. They've denied any wrongdoing.