Former Michigan State dean guilty of misconduct in office and willful neglect of duty
William Strampel, a former Michigan State University dean and the former boss of disgraced doctor Larry Nassar, was found guilty Wednesday of misconduct in office and two counts of willful neglect of duty.
The charges against Strampel stem from his own actions as dean from 2002 to 2018, as well as his failure to properly oversee Nassar, according to court documents.
The criminal complaint detailed statements from four female students who accused him of using his power as a dean to sexually assault and harass them as well as solicit nude photos of the women, according to court documents.
Strampel, the former dean of MSU’s College of Osteopathic Medicine, was acquitted on a felony charge of second-degree criminal sexual conduct in connection to those allegations, according to Michigan Attorney General’s office spokesman Dan Olsen.
Strampel’s defense team is “very happy” he wasn’t convicted of any sexual crimes, but otherwise feels a “mix of emotions” regarding the other convictions, defense attorney John Dakmak told CNN.
“We are in the very near future discussing whether or not to appeal,” Dakmak told CNN.
The charges came as part of Michigan special prosecutor William Forsyth’s investigation into how Nassar — the doctor for MSU’s women’s gymnastics team and the US women’s Olympic gymnastics team — was able to abuse more than 200 young girls and women over two decades.
Strampel was Nassar’s boss before the former doctor pleaded guilty to charges of criminal sexual conduct and child pornography. Nassar has been sentenced to lengthy prison terms.
In February of 2018, Michigan State moved to revoke Strampel’s tenure and he stepped down as dean that December, citing health problems.
“Today’s verdict reinforces the need for Michigan State to continue improving the climate for all faculty, staff and students at the university,” Michigan State spokesperson Emily Guerrant said to CNN in a statement.
“We will continue addressing the culture that allowed such abhorrent behavior as we work on meaningful actions to be more aware and more accountable. We have improved our dean review process, improved patient-care policies and our College of Osteopathic Medicine is developing a forward-looking strategic plan to improve and assess the educational climate. We know we have more work to do and are committed to the changes needed.”
Strampel is scheduled to be sentenced July 31, according to the Michigan Attorney General’s office.