Disgraced sports doctor Larry Nassar drugged, raped and impregnated a Michigan State University field hockey player in 1992 — and the university’s then-athletic director took steps to cover it up, according to an explosive new lawsuit.
The lawsuit, filed by Erika Davis in federal court in Grand Rapids, alleges that Davis told her coach, Martha Ludwig, that the sexual assault had been videotaped, prompting Ludwig to confront Nassar about the allegations and to demand a copy of the footage, according to the lawsuit, which was obtained by the Lansing State Journal.
George Perles — a current trustee at the university who resigned as Michigan State’s athletic director in 1992 — then intervened, and Davis’ complaint was dropped. Perles then forced Ludwig to hand over the video before resigning and signing a non-disclosure agreement, the lawsuit claims.
The lawsuit, which names Nassar, Michigan State, its board of trustees and USA Gymnastics as defendants, also claims that Davis was impregnated during the sexual assault and that Nassar, 55, is the only person who could have been the father. Davis later had a miscarriage, according to the lawsuit, which claims MSU’s Police Department pointed Davis in another direction when she reported the incident with two friends in October 1992.
“The police told them that since she was an athlete, she had to report it to the athletic department,” the lawsuit claims. “The detective explicitly told them that he was powerless to investigate anything that takes place [in] the athletic department and to go to the athletic department. Plaintiff Erika explained that the athletic department already dismissed it and the sergeant responded that George Perles is a ‘powerful man,’ and she should just drop it.”
Davis later lost her field hockey scholarship, according to the lawsuit, which accused Michigan State officials of going to “great lengths” to conceal Nassar’s conduct.
“Defendant Michigan State University could have stopped Defendant Nassar’s conduct back in 1992, but did not,” the lawsuit claims.
Attorneys for Perles and Davis did not immediately return messages seeking comment, the Lansing State Journal reports.