U of Michigan latest to dole out massive sex misconduct settlement

Education

FILE – This undated file photo provided by the Bentley Historical Library at the University of Michigan shows Dr. Robert E. Anderson. The University of Michigan has agreed to a $490 million settlement with hundreds of people who say they were sexually assaulted by the former sports doctor at the school. Attorney Parker Stinar says Wednesday, Jan. 19, 2022, that 1,050 people will share in the settlement, which was reached the night before. (Robert Kalmbach/Bentley Historical Library University of Michigan via AP)

This report talks about sexual abuse and assault. Anyone in need of services can contact the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 800-656-4673 or visit the Rape, Abuse and Incest National Network at www.rainn.org for additional resources.

(NewsNation Now) — A $490 million University of Michigan sexual abuse payout announced Wednesday is the latest of several multimillion-dollar settlements between universities and alleged victims.

Among those are payouts from Michigan State University, Penn State and the University of Southern California.

University of Michigan

The University of Michigan on Tuesday reached a $490 million settlement with 1,050 people who say they were sexually assaulted by former sports doctor Robert Anderson.

Anderson, now deceased, began working at the university in 1966 and retired in 2003. A whistleblower’s 2018 letter to Michigan athletic director Warde Manuel sparked an investigation into Anderson’s conduct.

Prior to Tuesday’s settlement, the university was in mediation to resolve multiple lawsuits, mostly by men who said Anderson sexually abused them during routine medical examinations.

Anderson, who died in 200, was director of the university’s Health Service and a physician for multiple athletic teams, including football. A number of football players and other athletes have come forward to accuse Anderson of sexually abusing them.

University staff missed multiple opportunities to stop Anderson over his 37-year career, according to a report by a firm that the school hired.

Michigan State University

In 2018, Michigan State University agreed to pay $500 million to settle claims from 332 women and girls who said they were assaulted by sports doctor Larry Nassar.

Nassar treated campus athletes and scores of young gymnasts at his Michigan State office. He built an international reputation while working at the same time for USA Gymnastics, and several Olympic gold medalists were among his victims.

A separate $380 million settlement also was announced last year with USA Gymnastics, the U.S. Olympic & Paralympic Committee and their insurers.

Nassar has pleaded guilty to molesting women and girls under the guise of treatment and is serving three prison sentences that will likely keep him locked up for life.

Penn State

Penn State has paid out more than $100 million to more than 40 people who said they were sexually abused by former assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky.

Sandusky is serving a 30- to 60-year sentence for sexual abuse of boys, including attacks that occurred in campus facilities.

In July, former Penn State President Graham Spanier reported to jail early to begin serving his sentence for child endangerment in a case stemming from the Sandusky investigation.

Spanier was charged over his response to a 2001 allegation that Sandusky was seen showering alone with a boy.

University of Southern California

In March, 2021, the University of Southern California agreed to an $852 million settlement with more than 700 women who accused George Tyndall — the college’s longtime campus gynecologist — of sexual abuse.

That’s separate from an earlier agreement to pay $215 million to settle a class-action lawsuit that applied to about 18,000 women who were patients of Tyndall’s.

Allegations against Tyndall first surfaced in 2018 in an investigation by the Los Angeles Times, which revealed that the doctor had been the subject of complaints of sexual misconduct at USC dating back to the 1990s.

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He wasn’t suspended until 2016, when a nurse reported him to a rape crisis center. He was able to quietly resign with a large payout the next year.

Tyndall surrendered his medical license in September 2019, records show.

He additionally was charged with 35 criminal counts of alleged sexual misconduct from 2009 to 2016 at the university’s student health center.

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