Ex-MSU Gymnastics Coach Kathie Klages Convicted of Lying in Larry Nassar Case

Mike Chiari@mikechiariFeatured ColumnistFebruary 14, 2020

COLLEGE PARK, MD - FEBRUARY 03:  The Michigan State Spartans logo on pair of shorts during a women's college basketball game against the Maryland Terrapins at the Xfinity Center on February 03, 2020 in College Park, Maryland.  (Photo by Mitchell Layton/Getty Images)
Mitchell Layton/Getty Images

Former Michigan State University gymnastics coach Kathie Klages was convicted on two counts of lying to police Friday. 

According to Megan Banta of the Lansing State Journal, Klages told police during a June 21, 2018, interview that two gymnasts did not tell her in 1997 that they were sexually abused by then-MSU sports medicine doctor Larry Nassar.

Nassar was convicted of multiple sex crimes against underage girls stemming from his time at Michigan State and with USA Gymnastics, and he is serving what amounts to a life sentence in prison.

Klages is facing up to four years in prison for her conviction.

Klages said she didn't remember the gymnasts, who were 14 and 16 at the time, or the conversation and denied knowing about Nassar's abuse before the Indianapolis Star's Tim Evans, Mark Alesia and Marisa Kwiatkowski reported on the allegations against Nassar in 2016.

After a lengthy stint as the head women's gymnastics coach at MSU, Klages was suspended in 2017 because of allegations that she ignored information that Nassar sexually assaulted gymnasts and discouraged them from speaking out.

Klages retired from coaching shortly thereafter.

Klages is the second former co-worker of Nassar to be found guilty of turning a blind eye to his misconduct since last year.

In August, former MSU dean William Strampel was sentenced to one year in jail for misconduct in office and willful neglect of duty after it was determined that he showed "complete indifference" about whether Nassar was following protocol following a 2014 sexual assault complaint.

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