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Saturday, September 25, 2021

UF gymnast said she was victim of Larry Nassar's sexual abuse

<p>Freshman&nbsp;<span id="docs-internal-guid-fec4772f-a1ed-6476-309d-1a0da02e36b6"><span>Alyssa Baumann posted the high score in beam for the second time in her career with a 9.90.&nbsp;</span></span></p>

Freshman Alyssa Baumann posted the high score in beam for the second time in her career with a 9.90. 

The name Alyssa Baumann will soon replace “Jane Doe” in a lawsuit against Larry Nassar.

Baumann, a 20-year-old UF social and behavioral sciences sophomore, UF gymnast and a former USA Gymnastics national team member, is one of nearly 500 women who accused Nassar, a former USA Gymnastics team doctor, of sexual abuse.

“I, too, was sexually abused by Larry Nassar,” Baumann said in a tweet Thursday night. “He betrayed my trust and took advantage of me for years.”

Baumann and former UF teammate Kennedy Baker both tweeted their stories about sexual abuse within a day of each other. Baker, also a former USA Gymnastics national team member, said in a tweet she came forward because other gymnasts inspired her.

More than 150 victims testified during Nassar’s sentencing in January, according to The Indianapolis Star. Nassar was sentenced to 40 to 175 years for his sexual abuse after a weeklong hearing.

Aly Raisman, who spoke at UF Nov. 6, also came forward about abuse from Nassar.

It takes one woman to speak out for other stories to be amplified, said Bridget Sloan, a 26-year-old former UF and USA national team gymnast.

Sloan said she was never abused by Nassar and didn’t have conversations with Baker or Baumann about him. Baker and Baumann could not be immediately reached for comment.

“I remember when it first all came to light. It really kind of messes with your head, even if you were never affected by it,” Sloan said. “It makes you question yourself.”

Contact Angela DiMichele at adimichele@alligator.org and follow her on Twitter at @angdimi

UF freshman Alyssa Baumann placed first in the balance beam event, her third win of the season, at the SEC Championships in St. Louis, Missouri. The Gators finished third with a score of 196.825.

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