On the day former doctor Larry Nassar was sentenced to prison, the U.S. Olympic Committee issued an apology for its role in allowing his abuse of young girls to continue.
Nassar will spend between 40 and 170 years behind bars for sexually abusing numerous girls, including members of the Olympic gymnastics team.
“The purpose of this message is to tell all of Nassar’s victims and survivors, directly, how incredibly sorry we are,” the committee wrote.
Acknowledging that it had “not been direct enough” about stating its position, the USOC attempted to clear the air with this week’s statement.
“We are sorry for the pain caused by this terrible man, and sorry that you weren’t afforded a safe opportunity to pursue your sports dreams,” the statement read. “The Olympic family is among those that have failed you.”
The Team USA statement went on to outline several steps the organization will take to address the issue, including “an investigation by an independent third party to examine how an abuse of this proportion could have gone undetected for so long.”