Sunday, 22 April, 2018

Nassar survivor says MSU interim president offered her $250K to settle

Mastercard Foundation to end Michigan State work over Nassar Michigan State regrets response to rape lawsuit, says interim university president
Steve Townsend | 15 April, 2018, 00:16

A Michigan State board of trustees meeting got heated Friday when Kaylee Lorincz, who was sexually assaulted by former university doctor Larry Nassar, alleged that interim MSU president John Engler had offered her $250,000 to drop her lawsuit against the school during a meeting for which her lawyer was not present.

Since then, I have spoken to Rachael and asked her about that meeting, but it turns out that Rachael has never met with Mr. Engler and more specifically, never gave him a dollar amount.

'After that meeting it was clear to me that nothing would change and that President Engler viewed meeting me as an opportunity to gain information, continuing to deflect and defend, ' stated Kaylee on Friday.

"My interpretation of the discussion was not that he was saying I'm offering you $250,000, it was a discussion about the civil litigation and how it was going on", said Guerrant, who added that she was in attendance for the meeting. Carol Viventi, Vice President and Special Counsel to the President, was also in the meeting she said.

Engler's short tenure has not been one for the textbooks since he took the post in January after the previous president, Lou Anna Simon, resigned hours after Nassar was sentenced to 40 to 175 years in prison for crimes involving Michigan State athletes.

Denhollander was the first survivor to file a criminal complaint against Larry Nassar back in 2016. Michigan State and its board of trustees are listed as co-defendants in many of those lawsuits.

She said she expressed an interest in working with the university to try to improve the way it has handled sexual assault cases on campus.

"Mr. Engler then looked directly at me and asked, 'Right now if I wrote you a check for $250,000 would you take it?'" the younger Lorincz said in her statement. When I explained that it's not about the money for me and that I just want to help, he said "well give me a number".

"My jaw dropped, and I said 'Just a slap on the butt?" "No one has given him a number".

Denhollander, when reached after Friday's board meeting, denied meeting with Engler and said she did not offer a number. Manly said represented parties in civil lawsuits are not typically supposed to interact with each other without their attorneys present.

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At O'Hara's Restaurant and Pub, a watering hole in lower Manhattan, one patron shrugged off the study and its recommendation. Another patron, Jaussi Ruotsalainen, a tourist from Finland, said he rarely drinks because he has two young kids at home.


"I felt like I was getting bullied into saying something".

As McCaul's testimony concluded, the crowd joined her in chanting, "Shame on you", at the board. What kind of a person does that?

Her mother then protested that the problem at MSU was bigger than just "one bad doctor", Lorincz says, and brought up the arrest of former College of Osteopathic Medicine Dean William Strampel.

She said Engler asked her if she would settle the suit for $250,000 without her attorney being present.

MSU Board of Trustees members will meet at 9 a.m. Friday to consider implementing an increase in the 2018-2019 room and board rates.

"I'm deeply troubled if the comments attributed to Engler are correct", Lyons told ESPN.

Said trustee Brian Mosallam: "If Kaylee Lorincz's story is correct, I am beyond disturbed".

"They responded and said it was just a meeting, to discuss things, and they (Engler and Viventi) weren't there as lawyers, just as university representatives", Manly said.

Also during Friday's meeting, Engler said he regrets that the university issued a statement with an "unnecessary amount of detail" - which some perceived as violating student privacy - in response to the Title IX lawsuit targeting the university's counseling center.

In a separate case, a woman sued the school on Monday, saying university counselors discouraged her from filing a police report after three Michigan State basketball players allegedly raped her in 2015.

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