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1st woman joins suit over Ohio State doc’s sex misconduct

April 30, 2021 GMT

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Twenty-three new plaintiffs are suing Ohio State University over alleged sexual misconduct by a team doctor already accused of abusing hundreds of young men during his two decades at the school.

Two new lawsuits filed Thursday in federal court include the first female plaintiff to file claims about now-deceased doctor Richard Strauss. The anonymous plaintiff, who attended Ohio State from 1994 to 1998, alleges Strauss once “excessively fondled” her during an exam.

Just over half of the new plaintiffs are former football players.

Ohio State has publicly apologized for school officials’ failure to stop Strauss during his tenure despite receiving complaints about him. It pledged a “monetary resolution” for those he harmed, and already reached nearly $47 million in settlements for 185 of the plaintiffs. When asked Friday for comment on the new lawsuits, a spokesman referred back to those previous statements.

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Roughly 400 men have sued the university during the past three years over its failure to stop Strauss despite students raising concerns with school employees as early as 1979. Many of the men said they were groped during exams.

Strauss died in 2005. No one has publicly defended him since the accusations came to light.

A law firm involved in the previous settlements is representing the plaintiffs in the two new lawsuits.