Ohio State University faces lawsuits over who knew about athlete sex abuse

Steve Snyder-Hill

Steve Snyder-Hill

Ohio State first announced in April that it would launch an investigation into allegations of sexual misconduct involving Strauss, stemming from initial reports of abuse during Strauss' time as a physician with the men's wrestling team in the 1980s.

Former athletes say they verbally raised concerns about Strauss as early as the late 1970s.

"We are grateful to those who have come forward and remain deeply concerned for anyone who may have been affected by Dr. Strauss' actions", said OSU President Michael V. Drake. The firm, Perkins Coie, has conducted more than 200 interviews with former Ohio State students and staff into allegations of abuse that span from 1979 to 1997.

Jordan has repeatedly denied any knowledge of inappropriate behavior during his time as assistant wrestling coach at OSU between 1987 and 1995.

Snyder-Hill said he recently contacted the firm investigating Strauss and received confirmation that they knew about his complaint.

According to court records, wide receivers coach Zach Smith, grandson of former Ohio State coach Earle Bruce, was served with the misdemeanor complaint May 12 in the north Columbus suburb of Powell.

"We remain steadfastly committed to uncovering the truth", he added. Several wrestlers had accused him of knowing but failing to report sexual abuse by the team doctor. Investigators also are looking into Strauss' work for student health services and at his off-campus medical clinic.

US, North Korea meet for repatriation of American troops' remains
The joint US-North Korea program to search for remains began in 1996 but was suspended in 2005 due to rising nuclear tensions. It's unclear how the North Koreans could be certain of the nationalities, although they have in the past included dog tags.

Strauss made a hernia check part of every exam, Sartori and other former athletes said, sometimes lingering a little too long on male athletes' genital area.

The lawsuit filed Monday seeks compensation for damages in an amount to be determined at trial. He committed suicide in 2005 at the age of 67.

"Congressman Jordan told the investigators what he has told the media since the story broke: he never saw any abuse, never heard of any abuse, and never had any abuse reported to him", Ian Fury, Mr. Jordan's spokesman, said Wednesday.

Last week, the Freedom Caucus voted to officially back him amid the allegations, which signaled a solid bloc of support for Jordan from his most ardent followers in the Republican conference.

Each of the former wrestlers in the case was sexually assaulted by Strauss in some way, the lawsuit said.

More than 100 ex-students interviewed reported "firsthand accounts" of being victimized by Strauss, the university said.

The complaint also mentions Jordan and wrestling coach Russ Hellickson, noting multiple instances in which wrestlers had informed the men of groping and harassment by Strauss.

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