COLUMBUS (WCMH) – NBC4 has learned a second group of plaintiffs in the Dr. Richard Strauss sex abuse scandal is asking the judge in the case against the Ohio State University to step down.
Late Sunday, attorney Rocky Ratliff, who is also a victim in the case, filed a motion citing what he called Federal District Court Judge Michael Watson’s “significant financial ties” to the university as evidence that he cannot remain impartial.
More than 300 men claim OSU turned a blind eye to decades of sexual abuse by the university doctor.
At the outset of the case, Watson revealed he teaches at OSU law school. Last week, he revealed his wife is a licensee and also sells merchandise to the university.
Additionally, NBC4’s Colleen Marshal reports the plaintiffs are circulating photographs that they claim show the judge and his wife socializing with university leaders on the Buckeye Cruise For Cancer while the case was pending.
In a statement, a university spokesman said, “The Buckeye Cruise For Cancer is an independent entity. We will be filing our position statement opposing plaintiffs’ motion to recuse.”
The judge gave all parties until midnight Sunday to weigh in on whether or not he should step down from the case.