April 23, 2021

Former US Olympic gymnastics coach commits suicide after being charged with sexual assault

Former USA Olympic Gymnastics Women's Team Coach John Geddert.

Former USA Olympic Gymnastics Women’s Team Coach John Geddert.

The former coach of the women’s Olympic gymnastics team USA. John Geddert committed suicide this Thursday after being charged with 24 counts, that included sexual assault and human trafficking, related to their work with athletes, reported the attorney general of the state of Michigan, Dana Nessel.

“My office has been notified that the body of John geddert he was found this afternoon after taking his own life. This is an end to a tragic story for everyone involved, “Nessel said in a statement.

Geddert was scheduled to appear in court on Thursday after being indicted by the prosecutor for “at least one sexual assault and multiple incidents of physical abuse against dozens of his young athletes.”

Specifically, Geddert faced twenty charges for alleged human trafficking, among which there were six related to minors; one for continued criminal activity; two for criminal sexual conduct in the first and second degree; and one for lying to investigators.

In a previous statement, the prosecutor had specified that “these allegations focus on multiple acts of verbal, physical and sexual abuse perpetrated by the accused against many young women.”

Geddert, the former owner of a gym in the Lansing area of ​​Michigan, was charged with human trafficking for allegedly having subjected female athletes to “forced labor” in extreme conditions that contributed to their injuries, Nessel’s office said in the note.

When the gymnasts complained, the coach did not take over and used intimidation, threats, and physical force to make them act up to his expectations.

In addition, the prosecutor added, he used his reputation as coach of the Olympic team by promising parents that he would make his daughters become top athletes, which would allow them to obtain scholarships in universities, to then subjecting them to “an environment of continued abuse, in which he ignored the advice of doctors, except for those provided by Larry Nassar. ”

The opening of an investigation against Geddert took place in February 2018, following the case of Nassar, a former sports doctor who sexually abused hundreds of girls and adolescents and who was sentenced to more than 300 years in prison.

Geddert coached the US team that won the gold medal in the Olympic Games 2012, in London.


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