Larry Nassar, the disgraced former USA Gymnastics doctor convicted of molesting countless patients over the course of more than two decades, has been sentenced to up to 175 years in prison in a Michigan court.
The sentence was handed down in Ingham County Circuit Court by Judge Rosemarie Aquilina Wednesday following days of often emotional victim impact statements — 156 in total — from former patients or their family members, all sharing stories of abuse by the shamed physician.
“I just signed your death warrant,” Aquilina said as she proclaimed the sentence. Nassar was motionless.
As he was led away in handcuffs, the courtroom erupted in applause.
“It takes a sick perversion to not only assault a child, but to do so with her parents present,” Michigan Assistant Attorney General Angela Povilaitis said in court Wednesday before the sentencing.
Povilaitis noted that most of his crimes occurred in his home while his wife, children and close family friends were often just upstairs, and called him “the most prolific child molester in history.”
She became emotional as she recounted her preparation for the case, asking out loud, “Did he really think he was going to get away with this?”
Nassar himself addressed his victims in a short statement before the sentencing.
“Your words these past several days have had a significant emotional effect on myself that has shaken me to my core,” he said.
“I will carry your words with me for the rest of my days.”
Nassar, 54, pleaded guilty in November, to seven charges of criminal sexual misconduct.
Among his victims was six-time Olympic medalist Aly Raisman, who brought the courtroom to its feet with an impassioned speech against Nassar on Friday.
“You are so sick,” Raisman said. “You took advantage of our passions and our dreams. I am here to face you, Larry, so you can see I have regained my strength, that I am no longer a victim.
“I am a survivor. I am no longer that little girl you met in Australia, where you first began grooming and manipulating. You caused me a great deal of physical, mental and emotional pain. You never healed me.”
There were so many women speaking against him in court that Nassar complained to Judge Aquilina at one point, bemoaning the weight of so many statements on his mental state.
Other women accusing Nassar of sexual abuse include former Olympic gymnasts McKayla Maroney, Gabby Douglas, Jordyn Wieber and Simone Biles.
Nassar has already been sentenced to 60 years in prison on child pornography charges.