EAST LANSING, Mich. – William Strampel was arraigned Tuesday afternoon on several charges including 4th-degree criminal sexual conduct.
Strampel, who is the former dean of Michigan State University's College of Osteopathic Medicine, is accused of sexually propositioning female medical students and compiling nude student selfies on his work computer. He is the first university official to face charges from an investigation into how complaints against disgraced former sports doctor Larry Nassar were handled. He was Nassar's supervisor for several years.
Strampel, 70, was arrested Monday and is being held at the Ingham County Jail. He faces the following charges:
- Count 1: Felony -- Misconduct in office
- Count 2: Criminal sexual conduct, 4th degree
- Counts 3 and 4: Willful neglect of duty
Strampel appeared by video in 54B District Court. He told the judge he spoke to an attorney for about 40 minutes Tuesday morning.
The judge set a $25,000 personal recognizance bond, meaning he will owe the court that money. He is not required to post a cash bond as long as he shows up at the scheduled court hearings.
A preliminary examination hearing is scheduled for May 3.
Nassar, 54, pleaded guilty to molesting patients and possessing child pornography and is expected to spend the rest of his life in prison. Strampel is accused of letting Nassar continue to treat patients unchecked by protocols that were supposedly put in place. Nassar worked as a physician for USA Gymnastics and Michigan State University
Strampel is accused of allowing Nassar to “commit a host of sexual assaults against new victims until, following news reports of additional allegations against Nassar, the university finally terminated his employment over two years later,” the complaint reads.
In January, more than 150 victims -- 156 to be exact -- delivered impact statements during a seven-day sentencing hearing that started. Nassar sat and listened to each statement as many were followed by a courtroom applause.
An emotional Nassar addressed the court before his sentencing.
"Your words these past several days have had a significant emotional effect on myself and have shaken me to my core," he said. "I also recognize that what I am feeling pales in comparison to the pain, trauma and emotional destruction that all of you are feeling. No words can describe the depth and breadth of how sorry I am for what has occurred. An acceptable apology to all of you is impossible to write and convey. I will carry your words with me for the rest my days."
Previous Strampel controversy
Strampel made comments in support of Nassar in 2016, regarding the allegations of Nassar's sexual abuse to his patients.
According to The Wall Street Journal, Strampel did not believe the hundreds of athletes who accused Nassar of sexual abuse in 2016.
Here is what Strampel said in 2016 when the allegations first came to light:
"This just goes to show that none of you learned the most basic lesson in medicine, medicine 101, that you should have learned in your first week: Don't trust your patients. Patients lie to get doctors in trouble, and we're seeing that right now in the news with this Nassar stuff. I don't think any of these women were actually assaulted by Larry, but Larry didn't learn that lesson and didn't have a chaperone in the room, so now they see an opening and they can take advantage of him.
"As soon as I found out, I had to fire his a--. I didn't want to, but what am I supposed to do?"
The Huffington Post talked with a spokesperson from Michigan State, who said MSU would not speak on behalf of Strampel, but said that John Engler, MSU's interim president, began the process of terminating Strampel's employment in February. That process, however, could take up to one year.
“William Strampel did not act with the level of professionalism we expect from individuals who hold senior leadership positions, particularly in a position that involves student and patient safety,” Engler said. “We are sending an unmistakable message today that we will remove employees who do not treat students, faculty, staff or anyone else in our community in an appropriate manner.”
Strampel stepped down as dean of the College of Osteopathic Medicine at Michigan State for medical reasons in December 2016. He had been the dean of that college since 2002.
Nassar was fired from MSU in September 2016 over the allegations of sexual abuse. He was then arrested in November 2016 on charges of child pornography. He was sentenced in January to 40 to 175 years in prison for sexually abusing hundreds of gymnasts and other athletes.
Nassar's work with gymnasts began in 1978, and he became an athletic trainer on the U.S. gymnastics team in 1986. He became a team physician and assistant professor at MSU in 1997.