By: Jonathan Lapook | CBS News
February 1, 2018
As former gymnastics doctor Larry Nassar awaits a third sentence in Michigan for sexually abusing young patients, it has now become clear that he could have been stopped years ago. Dozens, maybe hundreds of young athletes could have been spared.
"We let you down, Brianne," said Frank Walsh, Meridian Township's manager. He publicly apologized to Brianne Randall, one of Nassar's victims, Thursday. Back in 2004, the 17-year-old complained to police that Nassar had sexually abused her.
"We were deceived," said Dave Hall, the police chief. "We wish we had this one back."
Randall was one of 156 victims who spoke at last week's sentencing hearing. She saw Nassar for back pain.
"Sadly, they took your word instead of mine," she said.
According to the 2004 police report released Wednesday, Randall told police she was "scared" and "uncomfortable" after Nassar squeezed her breasts and "was trying to put his finger in her vagina."
Nassar admitted touching Randall in the genital area, but claimed to an officer it was a medical technique, showing him a "PowerPoint presentation" written by Nassar himself.
"Him and the police instructed my parents this was a legitimate medical procedure," Randall said.
"At that point in time it should have immediately been taken down to the prosecutor's office and it wasn't," admits Hall.
Twelve more years would go by, with Nassar continuing to sexually abuse young women.
"I am so hurt to hear that so many women and young girls suffered abuse as a result of the inaction in 2004," Randall told us. "I think 'what if' all the time."
On Thursday, one of Nassar's attorneys was interview on a radio station. Shannon Smith questioned whether all the girls who came forward were really sexually abused. Later, Nassar put out a statement saying he did not know Smith was going to say that and did not authorize her to do so.