WVU President: No Recollection of Ohio State University Doctor Accused of Sex Abuse

May 17, 2019

West Virginia University president E. Gordon Gee responded Friday to a report from Ohio State University that says a team doctor sexually abused students for nearly two decades.

 

Ohio State University released an investigative report Friday that says Dr. Richard Strauss sexually abused 177 male students between 1979 and 1997.

 

According to the investigation, university officials knew about the abuse but did nothing to stop it.

 

Investigators said Strauss pleaded with OSU administrators to keep his job as the accusations mounted against him. That included sending a letter in 1997 to then-president Gordon Gee.

 

Gee, whose first stint as OSU president was from 1990 to 1997, now oversees West Virginia University in the same role.

 

“As has been conveyed to the investigators at Ohio State, I have no recollection of Dr. Strauss or any reports regarding him. I have always taken any allegations brought to my attention very seriously and will continue to do so,” Gee said in an emailed statement.

 

Among the other then-OSU officials is U.S. Rep Jim Jordan, R-Ohio. Jordan, who was a wrestling coach at the university from 1987 to 1995, said Friday the report confirms that he was unaware of the allegations against Strauss.

 

Former OSU wrestlers claimed last year that Jordan knew or must have known of the reports of sexual abuse.

 

“I do know Rep. Jordan, but only as a congressman from the district which includes one of the campuses of Ohio State as I worked with him in that capacity during my second term,” Gee said Friday in his statement.

 

Strauss was fired from his positions as a team doctor and physician at the student health center in 1998.

 

He committed suicide in 2005.