The stories of sexual abuse of gymnasts at the hands of Dr. Larry Nassar chronicled first by reporters at our very own IndyStar were absolutely devastating to read—and every statement by one of his brave survivors since the story first broke have been burned in my brain.
In 2018, the former USA Gymnastics team doctor was sentenced to up to 175 years in prison for multiple sex crimes after over 150 women spoke out (or submitted written statements) in a Michigan court. He had already been previously sentenced to 60 years in federal prison for child pornography.
But it’s not too hard to imagine a world where Nassar is never brought to justice, if not for the work of the reporting team at the IndyStar. Their fantastic work will be chronicled in a new documentary, Athlete A, premiering on Netflix on June 24. I, for one, cannot wait to see this inside look at local journalism in action—our own All the President’s Men, if you will. The film will also look at the attorney fighting the institutional cover-up, and, of course, the whistle-blowers who exposed Nassar and opened the door for prosecution.
With the media under constant fire and local journalistic outlets fighting to survive, it’s important to remember how vital diligent reporting and tenacity are for our communities. Without the IndyStar, Larry Nassar could very well be abusing new victims right now.
Athlete A begins streaming on Netflix on June 24.