A family of a teenage girl has filed a new sexual abuse lawsuit against USA Swimming, Indiana Swimming and Metropolitan School District of Lawrence Township.
The lawsuit, filed by Attorney Jonathan Little, contends that officials did not do enough to protect the girl from her coach Christopher Wheat, who is now serving a 10-year sentence, and calls for the resignation or firing of USA Swimming executive director Chuck Weilgus and others.
USA Swimming released the following statement:
"We have received several press inquiries related to a press conference given by an Indiana attorney announcing the filing of a lawsuit against USA Swimming and Indiana Swimming. At this time, USA Swimming has not been served with a suit so we are not in a position to comment on these claims. However, to the extent that the attorney has claimed that USA Swimming has a culture of protecting pedophiles, that is categorically untrue. There is nothing more important to USA Swimming than the safety and well-being of its 300,000 members. For that reason, the organization has developed one of the most comprehensive Athlete Protection Programs among Olympic sports.
"In addition, the attorney’s allegation that USA Swimming had been warned of sexual abuse by Chris Wheat is also untrue. The first instance that USA Swimming learned about abuse by Chris Wheat was when we were notified of his arrest in September 2009. Upon learning of the arrest, USA Swimming immediately implemented the process to expel and permanently ban Chris Wheat from USA Swimming, which was accomplished shortly thereafter in December 2009." Read more...