Former Michigan State dean guilty of neglect in handling of Nassar

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — A former dean who had oversight of now-imprisoned sports doctor Larry Nassar at Michigan State University was found guilty Wednesday of neglect of duty and misconduct in office but acquitted on a more serious criminal sexual conduct charge.

William Strampel, the ex-dean of the College of Osteopathic Medicine, was the first person charged after Michigan's attorney general launched an investigation 1½ years ago into how Michigan State handled complaints against Nassar, who pleaded guilty to molesting patients and possessing child pornography.

Strampel, 71, had been accused of abusing his power to sexually proposition and harass female students and not enforcing patient restrictions imposed on Nassar following a 2014 complaint. Jurors found him not guilty of felony criminal sexual conduct in the second degree — a charge that could have sent him to prison for up to 15 years for grabbing the buttocks of at least one student.

He could still face up to five years in prison on the felony misconduct conviction, which stems from a charge that he used his public office to harass, discriminate, demean, proposition and sexually assault students.

"Today's verdict sends a clear message: It's time to change the culture in our schools and medical communities so that our female students and doctors receive the same treatment and respect as their male counterparts," Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel said in written statement. "Public officers who brandish their power to demean, insult, objectify and abuse female students will be held accountable."

Strampel left the courthouse without commenting. His attorney, John Dakmak, said it "speaks volumes" that jurors "saw through a lot of allegations that fell flat."

5 PHOTOS
Former MSU dean William Strampel in court
See Gallery
Former MSU dean William Strampel in court
William Strampel, the ex-dean of MSU's College of Osteopathic Medicine and former boss of Larry Nassar, appears during closing arguments in his trial before Judge Joyce Draganchuk at Veterans Memorial Courthouse in Lansing, Mich., on Tuesday, June 11, 2019. Strampel is charged with four counts including second-degree criminal sexual conduct, misconduct in office and willful neglect of duty. (J. Scott Park/Jackson Citizen Patriot via AP)
William Strampel appears on a monitor during his video arraignment, Tuesday, March 27, 2018, in East Lansing, Mich. Strampel, a Michigan State University official who oversaw Larry Nassar, was arrested Monday amid an investigation into the handling of complaints against the former sport doctor, who is in prison for sexually assaulting patients under the guise of treatment. (AP Photo/Paul Sancya)
FILE - In this March 27, 2018, file photo provided by the Michigan Attorney General's Office shows William Strampel, the former Dean of the Michigan State University, College of Osteopathic Medicine, who was arraigned in District Court in East Lansing, Mich. Closing arguments are scheduled Tuesday, June 11, 2019, in the trial of former medical school dean Strampel, who had oversight of now-imprisoned former sports doctor Larry Nassar at Michigan State. Strampel is charged with second-degree criminal sexual conduct and misconduct in office, both felonies, and misdemeanor willful neglect of duty. (Michigan Attorney General's Office via AP, File)
William Strampel, left, on monitor, appears during his video arraignment with Judge Richard D. Ball, left, Tuesday, March 27, 2018, in East Lansing, Mich. Strampel, a Michigan State University official who oversaw Larry Nassar, was arrested Monday amid an investigation into the handling of complaints against the former sport doctor, who is in prison for sexually assaulting patients under the guise of treatment. (AP Photo/Paul Sancya)
FILE - In this June 11, 2019 file photo, William Strampel, center, the ex-dean of MSU's College of Osteopathic Medicine and former boss of Larry Nassar, appears during closing arguments in his trial before Judge Joyce Draganchuk at Veterans Memorial Courthouse in Lansing, Mich. Strampel was found guilty Wednesday of neglect of duty and misconduct in office but acquitted on a more serious criminal sexual conduct charge. (J. Scott Park/Jackson Citizen Patriot via AP File)
HIDE CAPTION
SHOW CAPTION
of
SEE ALL
BACK TO SLIDE

During Strampel's trial , which began May 30, multiple former medical students testified about sexual comments he made during one-on-one meetings. They accused him of staring at their breasts. Women who worked as model patients during exams also testified about unprofessional and sexual comments.

Prosecutors alleged that Strampel willfully neglected a duty to enforce the limits put on Nassar in 2014 after a patient accused the doctor of sexual contact — such as not treating patients near any sensitive areas on the body without a chaperone present. The defense said Strampel was among many officials who had a role, and said it is not a crime to use "locker room talk" no matter how offensive it may be.

Read Full Story

Sign up for Breaking News by AOL to get the latest breaking news alerts and updates delivered straight to your inbox.

Subscribe to our other newsletters

Emails may offer personalized content or ads. Learn more. You may unsubscribe any time.