GOP Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) is being accused of willfully ignoring the sexual abuse of wrestlers he coached at Ohio State University.
NBC News reports: ‘The university announced in April that it was investigating accusations that Dr. Richard Strauss, who died in 2005, abused team members when he was the team doctor from the mid-1970s to late 1990s. Jordan, who was assistant wrestling coach at the university from 1986 to 1994, has repeatedly said he knew nothing of the abuse until former students began speaking out this spring. His denials, however, have been met with skepticism and anger from some former members of the wrestling team. Three former wrestlers told NBC News that it was common knowledge that Strauss showered regularly with the students and inappropriately touched them during appointments, and said it would have been impossible for Jordan to be unaware; one wrestler said he told Jordan directly about the abuse.’
Mike DiSabato, a former wrestler said that Jordan “is absolutely lying if he says he doesn’t know what was going on” and that when he reached out to the now congressman, Jordan told him to “please leave me out of it.”
Another wrestler, Dunyasha Yetts, said he talked to Jordan multiple times about incidents involving Strauss, including a time Strauss started pulling down his wrestling shorts when he told the doctor he had a thumb injury, and said “it’s sad for me to hear that he’s denying knowing about Strauss…I don’t know why he would, unless it’s a cover-up. Either you’re in on it, or you’re a liar.”
Another unidentified teammate told NBC News there was no way Jordan couldn’t have known about the abuse: “It was a head-scratcher to me why he would say he didn’t know anything. Doc used to take showers with the team even though he didn’t do any workouts, and everybody used to snicker about how you go into his office for a sore shoulder and he tells you to take your pants down.”
Much more in NBC News’ report.
Jordan’s spokesman Ian Fury released a statement to NBC News: “Congressman Jordan never saw any abuse, never heard about any abuse, and never had any abuse reported to him during his time as a coach at Ohio State.”