A former US Olympics gymnastics coach has committed suicide hours after he was charged with sexual assault and human trafficking, Michigan’s state attorney general has confirmed
John Geddert’s death was confirmed death hours after the outlining 24 charges against him in connection with the abuse of young gymnasts.
In a statement, Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel said: “My office has been notified that the body of John Geddert was found late this afternoon after taking his own life. This is a tragic end to a tragic story for everyone involved.”
Sarah Klein, who had identified herself as the first to be abused by former USA Gymnastics team doctor Larry Nassar in her reaction to the news on Thursday said Geddert’s death was an “escape from justice”.
“He tortured and abused little girls, myself included, for more than 30 years and was able to cheat justice,” Klein said.
Klein also spoke about Gebbert being allowed at the time blaming and it all on officials at the top gymnastics organizations.
“Geddert was a narcissistic abuser. His suicide is an admission of guilt that the entire world can now see. Also guilty are his enablers including the top officials at USA Gymnastics and the US Olympic and Paralympic Committee who promoted him, enabled him and allowed him to coach Team USA,” Klein said.
Geddert also faced 14 human trafficking charges for allegedly subjecting “his athletes to forced labor or services under extreme conditions that contributed to them suffering injuries and harm”.
He “neglected those injuries that were reported to him by the victims and used coercion, intimidation, threats and physical force to get them to perform to the standard he expected,” the attorney general’s statement said.
Geddert was head of the women’s gymnastics team in 2012 and he worked closely with doctor Larry Nassar, team physician at the time.
While Nassar was sentenced to up to 300 years in jail in 2018 for abusing more than 250 girls from his position.
Geddert, the former owner of the training facility in Michigan where Nassar was the gym’s doctor. And a number of gymnasts accused him of abusive behaviour when they testified during Nassar’s trial.
It is said that Geddert was also known for his close relationship with Nassar, the two were friends and business associates, and it happened that three of Nassar’s sexual assault convictions occurred at Twistars.
Geddert, has long been noticed within the gymnastics community as one of Nassar’s enablers. As far back as the late 1980s, at Great Lakes Gymnastics Club in Lansing, before he was even a licensed physician, Nassar began sexually assaulting minor gymnasts on his training table, according to the accounts of multiple women.