Gymnastics coach accused of sexual abuse banned
A former U.S. women's Olympic gymnastics coach accused of having sex with at least three young gymnasts has been banned for life from the sport and kicked out of the USA Gymnastics Hall of Fame.
Don Peters, who coached the 1984 U.S. women's team to eight medals, was ruled to be "permanently ineligible" for membership in USA Gymnastics following an investigation by the organization.
His membership in the USA Gymnastics Hall of Fame will be revoked, according to a news release issued Wednesday by USA Gymnastics, which said it has concluded the disciplinary process regarding Peters according to its bylaws.
In a story published by the Orange County Register in September, three women came forward to say Peters had sex with three gymnasts in the 1980s.
One woman, Doe Yamashiro, accused Peters of fondling her repeatedly beginning when she was 16 and having intercourse with her when she was 17.
A second woman, who asked not to be identified in the story, said Peters had sex with her when she was 18 even though the coach knew the young gymnast had been sexually abused by her father.
A former assistant director of SCATS, a Huntington Beach gymnastics club built by Peters, told the paper the coach had confessed to her in the early 1990s to having sex with Yamashiro, the unidentified second gymnast and a third teenage gymnast.
According to the paper, the women came forward "to expose the sport's exploitative culture and USA Gymnastics' failure to pursue sexual abuse more aggressively."
Yamashiro and Linda McNamara, the former SCATS assistant director, reported their allegations to USA Gymnastics, which then started its investigation.