As MSU freshman Zach Willoughby spends his afternoon bowling in the basement of the MSU Union, he reflects on the state of the university.
“I think that it has kinda fallen into the shadows a little bit after the whole sentencing of Larry Nassar,” Willoughby said.
Former Michigan State president Lou Anna K. Simon appeared in court, facing charges related to the Larry Nassar scandal. Simon stepped down as president in January, just hours after the Nassar sentencing concluded in Ingham County.
“They want her and the whole thing to just disappear and it shouldn’t happen like that, you can’t just make stuff like this disappear because it’ll create a stigma around your university,” Willoughby said.
Simon has said numerous times that she did not know of any reports made against Nassar until 2016. But evidence from the Attorney General’s office proves that Simon met with the head of MSU’s Title IX office in 2014, to discuss a complaint made against the former doctor.
John Fraser is an assistant attorney at Grewal Law, a law firm based in East Lansing that is handling 111 cases involving the scandal.
“Lying to the police is a problem,” said Fraser. “You’re either trying to help fix the problem or you’re trying to hide something, and the charges against president Simon look like she might be trying to hide something.”
She is currently charged with two felonies and two misdemeanors, and could get up to four years in prison if convicted.
Gerardo Arredondo is a stylist at Essex Hair Design in East Lansing, and it also a parent of two. He says the former president should have done more to prevent this scandal from continuing.
“She should have gone after anybody that was involved instead of trying to cover it up,” Arredondo said. “I think she should go to prison, if you know something of that magnitude and you’re not doing anything about it and you’re covering it up you’re just as guilty.
“If something like that happened to my kid I have no idea what I would do but I would try to find justice for my kid.”