EAST LANSING, MICH. - The Michigan State independent student newspaper called on the university president to resign in a powerful editorial and newspaper cover on Thursday, urging President Lou Anna K. Simon to "do the right thing."
The editorial and newspaper cover were published on the third day of victims giving impact statements during the sentencing hearing of former USA Gymnastics and Michigan State doctor Larry Nassar.
"Survivors of ex-MSU and USA Gymnastics doctor Larry Nassar's sexual abuse cannot move on without change," the State News editorial said. "You 'apologized' to them, you have thrown money at them, but about the only thing you haven't done is listen. Simon, if you're the Spartan you claim to be, you will step down and bow out gracefully. We hope you make the right choice, because time's up."
Simon was widely criticized for not attending the first day of the hearing on Tuesday. A spokesperson for the university told Yahoo's Dan Wetzel that Simon watched the first day of the hearing through live media streaming. She did attend the hearing on Wednesday, though one of Nassar's victims tweeted she was not impressed.
Lou Anna Simon told me today that she had no idea who the victims were & their names until today being at court. She was there for the last half of the day to see around 10 (maybe) statements. You don’t even know the magnitude of people this has reached. You are not a president.— Lindsey Lemke (@lindseylemke) January 17, 2018
Nassar pleaded guilty in November to 10 counts of first-degree criminal sexual conduct and is facing up to life in prison. He was sentenced to 60 years in federal court on child pornography charges in December.
The Detroit News reported on Thursday that reports of sexual misconduct by Nassar reached at least 14 Michigan State University representatives in the two decades before Nassar was arrested.
According to that report, Simon was told that a Title IX complaint and a police report had been filed against an unnamed physician. More from the Detroit News:
"I was informed that a sports medicine doctor was under investigation," said Simon, who made the brief comments after appearing in court Wednesday to observe a sentencing hearing for Nassar. "I told people to play it straight up, and I did not receive a copy of the report. That's the truth."
More than 140 women are part of civil lawsuits alleging that Nassar abused them - including many who say the abuse happened at Michigan State.
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