Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) has been accused of turning a blind eye to sexual abuse at Ohio State more than two decades ago when he was a wrestling coach there.
NBC News reported Tuesday that three former wrestlers came forward with the allegations that Jordan knew they were being abused by former team doctor Richard Strauss, and that it was “common knowledge” that he would take showers with wrestlers. Jordan has denied knowledge of the scandal.
Mike DiSabato, a former Ohio State wrestler whose accusations against Strauss led to the school opening an investigation into the allegations of abuse that took place from the mid-1970’s to the late 90’s, called Jordan a “liar.”
“I considered Jim Jordan a friend,” DiSabato told NBC. “But at the end of the day, he is absolutely lying if he says he doesn’t know what was going on.”
The former wrestler said he told Jordan that he planned to go public with the allegations against Strauss before doing so — and that the congressman asked to be left out of it, saying he didn’t want to be “involved.”
Dunyasha Yetts, who wrestled on Ohio State’s team in 1993 and 1994, told NBC that he and other team members alerted Jordan to Strauss’ alleged abuse.
“I remember I had a thumb injury and went into Strauss’ office and he started pulling down my wrestling shorts,” Yetts said. “I’m like, what the f— are you doing?”
“I went out and told Russ [Hellickson, the team’s former head coach and Jordan’s mentor] and Jim what happened,” he continued. “I was not having it. They went in and talked to Strauss.”
Yetts also said that Jordan, whose locker was next to Strauss’, once told the team doctor that “he’d kill him if he tried anything with him.”