COLUMBUS (AP) — Some of the men suing Ohio State over decades-old sexual abuse by the late team doctor Richard Strauss are asking a judge to let the litigation resume because months of mediation haven’t yielded a settlement.
Lawyers for nearly half of the roughly 350 accusers who have sued wrote to the federal judge Monday. They argue the university has “refused to engage in productive settlement talks” and hasn’t participated in good faith.
They say that adds to their clients’ trauma. Ohio State officials have publicly apologized to those harmed by Strauss and insisted they are actively mediating in good faith and pursuing a “monetary resolution.”
A spokesperson with Ohio State released the following statement in regards to the letter:
We are actively participating in good faith in the mediation process directed by the federal court and remain committed to a fair outcome, including a monetary resolution.
Lawyers representing some of the men released this statement:
It is true that we have come to the conclusion that further mediation efforts would be futile. Unfortunately, there remains an overriding sentiment which is palpable when interacting with OSU’s attorneys that these men suffered from nothing more than “locker room behavior gone bad”. Nothing could be further from the truth. Dr. Strauss was a cunning and serial predator who for over a decade freely committed the full array of sexual abuse, including sodomy, anal digital penetration and forced masturbation through ejaculation, upon countless OSU male students throughout and outside campus without any protection whatsoever from OSU administrators. Indeed, as the independent investigation conducted by Perkins Coie demonstrates, there was a university-wide cover up for this savage monster. Until OSU and its attorneys recognize these facts and commit to fairly compensating these men for their lifelong losses, our clients have decided to press forward with litigation so that, ultimately, the citizens of central Ohio can properly assess this unnecessary dispute through a jury trial.