The very popular Olympic champion McKayla Maroney is making allegations against USA Gymnastics, claiming that it tried to cover up the horrendous abuse.
Here’s a news report about her allegations:
Maroney alleges that USA Gymnastics forced her to sign a confidentiality agreement to not discuss the sexual abuse she suffered at the hands of former team doctor Larry Nassar.
Maroney’s lawyer says that she signed the agreement during a time when she was still traumatized by the news that Nassar had molested dozens of other women.
“I want people to understand that this kid had no choice. She couldn’t function. She couldn’t work,” her lawyer said. “They were willing to sacrifice the health and well-being of one of the most famous gymnasts in the world because they didn’t want the world to know they were protecting a pedophile doctor.”
The amount of the agreement wasn’t disclosed, but the Wall Street Journal reported that Maloney was paid $1.25 million to keep quiet.
What does USA Gymnastics say?
The organization disputed the allegations saying that it was Maloney’s lawyer at the time, Gloria Allred, who approached them and not the other way around.
“Although USA Gymnastics is disappointed by today’s filing, we applaud McKayla and others who speak up against abusive behavior,” their statement read, “including the despicable acts of Larry Nassar.
“We want to work together with McKayla and others to help encourage and empower athletes to speak up against abuse,” the statement continued. “USA Gymnastics new CEO Kerry Perry is eager to speak personally with McKayla to hear her ideas on how to move the sport forward and to discuss the many safe sport enhancements that have already been implemented at USA Gymnastics.”
Tennis legend Martina Navritalova tweeted about the allegations, saying, “McKayla Maroney Signed Confidentiality Agreement With USA Gymnastics About Alleged Sexual Abuse- clearly some people at USA gymnastics should be in jail for this coverup. There needs to be a serious PURGE.”
Maroney was also known for a popular meme that went viral from a photo of her facial expression during competition. she took a similar photo with former President Barack Obama when she visited the White House.