Two former students at Ohio State University (OSU), Alonzo Shavers and Kenneth McHone, have filed a civil rights lawsuit against the university in US District Court. They allege that the university was aware of Dr. Richard Strauss’ sexual misconduct, and “was deliberately indifferent” to the plight of students.
The case against Strauss, who committed suicide in 2005, has been ongoing since 2018, when OSU first hired the Perkins and Coie law firm to investigate allegations of abuse. Their findings showed that Strauss abused at least 177 male students between 1979 and 1998. Many of Strauss’ victims were wrestlers, gymnasts, and swimmers who needed to see Strauss for treatment and physicals.
Shavers and McHone Subjected to Unrelated Physical Examinations
Shavers played football for Ohio State from 1992 to 1996. According to the lawsuit, Strauss sexually abused Shavers under the guise of a prostate examination.
Strauss treated McHone twice while he studied at OSU from 1993 to 1999. In both visits, Strauss allegedly sexually assaulted McHone by carrying out physical examinations that were not related to the reasons for McHone’s office visit.
Attorneys for OSU have revealed that the school has settled 17 lawsuits involving 185 former students for $46.7 million.
Justice for the Students
In response to his involvement in the case, former OSU student health director Dr Ted W Grace surrendered his medical license. State medical authorities indicate that the doctor’s license has been “permanently revoked” and that the investigation into his actions is now closed.
Strauss’ emeritus status was also revoked in 2019.
According to Cleveland.com, OSU “condemned Strauss’ conduct and the university’s failure at the time to prevent the abuse and has expressed its regret and sincere apologies to each person who endured or has been impacted by Strauss’ abuse,” as stated in a document filed by attorneys for the school last week.
They add that the university has worked to “reconcile and restore the bond between itself and its former students and alumni” who were affected by Strauss.