Judge’s or­der shields iden­ti­ties of for­mer MSU dean’s ac­cusers

The Detroit News - - News - BY BETH LEBLANC Detroit News Lans­ing Bu­reau

East Lans­ing — The iden­tity of the women whose com­plaints prompted charges against Larry Nas­sar’s for­mer boss will re­main pro­tected through­out the court case, ac­cord­ing to an or­der signed Mon­day by 54B District Judge An­drea Larkin.

The pro­tec­tive or­der is largely pro­ce­dural and will shield the women’s per­son­ally iden­ti­fy­ing in­for­ma­tion —such as names, ad­dresses, and so­cial se­cu­rity num­bers — from dis­clo­sure. Any doc­u­ments con­tain­ing such in­for­ma­tion will re­main un­der seal, ac­cord­ing to the or­der.

The “high-pro­file na­ture” of the case could ex­pose wit­nesses to ex­ces­sive me­dia scru­tiny, em­bar­rass­ment, in­tim­i­da­tion or threats, a memo from the At­tor­ney Gen­eral’s of­fice said.

The or­der pro­tects the four women who have ac­cused Wil­liam Stram­pel of in­ap­pro­pri­ate and crim­i­nal be­hav­ior as dean of Michi­gan State Uni­ver­sity’s Col­lege of Os­teo­pathic Medicine.

Stram­pel was ar­raigned in late March on felony charges of mis­con­duct in of­fice and fourth-de­gree crim­i­nal sex­ual con­duct, and two mis­de­meanor charges of will­ful ne­glect of duty.

Pros­e­cu­tors al­leged Stram­pel used his po­si­tion to ha­rass, dis­crim­i­nate, propo­si­tion, sex­u­ally as­sault and so­licit porno­graphic im­ages and videos of fe­male stu­dents. Ni­cole East­man has ac­knowl­edged pub­licly that she is vic­tim No. 4 in the com­plaint. East­man said Stram­pel spoke in­ap­pro­pri­ately to her while she was a stu­dent in the MSU Col­lege of Os­teo­pathic Medicine in the mid-2000s and grabbed her butt at a ball.

Au­thor­i­ties said Stram­pel, who has been on med­i­cal leave since De­cem­ber, al­lowed Nas­sar to re­turn to work one month be­fore MSU com­pleted a Ti­tle IX in­ves­ti­ga­tion into re­ports from a fe­male pa­tient who said Nas­sar touched her in­ap­pro­pri­ately. Nas­sar was cleared of wrong­do­ing fol­low­ing the probe in 2014.

Stram­pel’s at­tor­ney, John Dak­mak, has said Stram­pel in­tends to fight the charges. The for­mer dean has a $25,000 per­sonal re­cog­ni­zance bond.

Last month, MSU in­terim Pres­i­dent En­gler sub­mit­ted a re­quest be­gin­ning the process to re­voke Stram­pel’s ten­ure and an­nounced that MSU would not cover any of Stram­pel’s le­gal ex­pense.

Stram­pel has been named in law­suits filed against MSU and Nas­sar.

Nas­sar, a for­mer sports doc­tor for MSU and USA Gym­nas­tics, is ac­cused of sex­u­ally abus­ing more than 250 women over more than two decades un­der the guise of per­form­ing med­i­cal treat­ment. He is ex­pected to spend the rest of his life in prison.


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