A new, third, lawsuit filed against Ohio State University by former students who say they were abused by a doctor at the school, contradicts GOP Rep. Jim Jordan's categorical claim that no one at Ohio State, including himself, ever knew about the ongoing abuse.
The federal lawsuit, filed by ten former students, says that the university was notified that Dr. Richard Strauss was abusing students all the way back to Strauss' first year on the job in the late 1970s. Strauss worked at OSU for nearly twenty years. From the lawsuit:
OSU learned about Dr. Strauss’s inappropriate sexual conduct as early as his first year of employment there. When an attending physician at Student Health Services asked a wrestling team captain why he came to Student Health Services instead of seeing Dr. Strauss, the wrestler explained that Dr. Strauss had examined his genitals for 20 minutes and appeared to be trying to get him excited.
The lawsuit goes on to allege that sports team members were required to see Dr. Strauss at least once a year, and that when they claimed about him molesting them, their coach threatened them in response.
The suit tells the story of then-student Steve Snyder-Hill, who says he filed a complaint about Dr. Strauss with the university in 1995, and OSU basically blew him off, telling him that no other students had complained about Strauss' exams. We now know this to be untrue, and not only from this lawsuit. Two former wrestlers say then-coach Jim Jordan was informed of the abuse; and Jordan's boss at the time, and another school administrator, were both informed of the abuse years ago. Jordan's boss even admitted on tape that he was informed of the abuse.
Yet, Jordan claimed recently, and unequivocally, that no one at the university was ever aware of the abuse.
Why would Jordan claim this -- and claim it so strongly -- when it's not true, and when there was no way Jordan could knew if it were true. What if a coach or administrator were aware of the abuse and didn't come forward -- how would Jordan know whether they were hiding something? Surely, Jordan must have contemplated the possibility that someone at the school secretly knew about the abuse. Then why would Jordan claim publicly that no one knew? Unless Jordan wanted to mislead the public about the scandal. But what would be his motivation to do so?
The new lawsuit raises another alarming fact. Dr. Strauss was not simply Ohio State's sports doctor. He also attended to students at the student health clinic. Ohio State has over 40,000 students per year. Over a twenty-year period, that's 200,000 students. If only a fraction of them went to student health services in their four years, or so, at the school, that could still mean quite a large number saw, and were victimized by, Dr. Strauss. Any inaction by coaches or school administrators permitted the molestation to continue unabated.
This new lawsuit also alleges that a track and field coach, and a tennis coach, at Ohio State were also informed of the abuse, but did nothing. Again, proving that Jim Jordan lied when he claimed no one at the school knew.
What could possibly motivate Jim Jordan to lie?