Another sexual-abuse survivor of former gymnastics doctor and convicted serial sexual offender Larry Nassar came forward this week and claimed that former U.S. Olympics gymnastics coach John Geddert witnessed the abuse. Sara Teristi, who met Nassar and Geddert as a young teen in the late 1980s, made the allegations in a book excerpt from Abigail Pesta’s forthcoming The Girls: An All-American Town, a Predatory Doctor, and the Untold Story of the Gymnasts Who Brought Him Down. Geddert, she said, created a culture of fear at the gym by physically and psychologically abusing her, which left her vulnerable to abuse from Nassar, who she says touched her inappropriately in front of Geddert. Eventually, when she was 16 years old and suffering from a hairline fracture to her tailbone, Nassar penetrated her anally with his hands under the guise of performing a medical procedure. Teristi said she believed Nassar was ejaculating while he abused her.
Teristi also alleged that Geddert used a ruler or tape measure to record her flexibility while she did splits at practice, at one point touching and rubbing her crotch through her leotard while claiming it was to get a better measurement.
Through the repeated abuses she endured, Teristi said she learned that “your body didn’t belong to you” and that “you didn’t get to make decisions about it.” It took her decades to begin to unlearn that lesson, she told Pesta.