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Ohio State University Pays $41 Million Sex Abuse Settlement

Ohio State University Pays $41 Million Sex Abuse Settlement

May 11, 2020 — Ohio State University has announced that it will pay a $40.9 million settlement to 162 former athletes who said they were sexually abused by Dr. Richard Strauss.

Strauss worked at OSU in the athletic department from 1978 to 1998. He died in 2005. Most of his victims are former wrestlers at OSU.

He is accused of using his bare hands to molest the genitals of male athletes during yearly physicals that OSU required to play sports.

Strauss is also accused of being a locker room voyeur, sitting on a stool to watch students shower, and showering naked with students multiple times per day.

Many students said Strauss’ abuse was an “open secret” in the athletic department, but coaches and other leaders did not stop it.

The scandal came to light after a wrestler came forward in April 2018 with a complaint against Strauss, decades after the abuse occurred.

After a year-long investigation, OSU concluded that Strauss had sexually abused at least 177 former students. As of this year, at least 350 athletes and other students have filed lawsuits against OSU.

In March, OSU announced a settlement with 162 survivors, but did not publicly report the cost of the settlement — $40.9 million — until May 8. The university emphasized that the money will not come from discretionary spending, and not tuition, taxpayer funds, or donations.

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