Fourth Ohio State wrestler claims Jordan knew about sexual abuse

Fourth Ohio State wrestler claims Jordan knew about sexual abuse
© Greg Nash

A fourth former college wrestler is claiming Rep. Jim JordanJames (Jim) Daniel JordanMore than 100 ex-Ohio State students share allegations of sexual misconduct by doctor: AP The Hill's Morning Report — Russia furor grips Washington Freedom Caucus members see openings in leadership MORE (R-Ohio) knew about the sexual abuse of the team he coached at Ohio State University two decades ago, according to NBC News.

Three former OSU wrestlers told NBC on Tuesday that Jordan knew about Dr. Richard Strauss’s alleged sexual abuse of young athletes and did nothing about it.

Shawn Dailey is the fourth wrestler to come out against Jordan to NBC News, claiming he spoke with Jordan frequently about Strauss’s inappropriate behavior.

“I participated with Jimmy [Jordan] and the other wrestlers in locker-room talk about Strauss,” Dailey told NBC. “We all did. It was very common knowledge in the locker room that if you went to Dr. Strauss for anything, you would have to pull your pants down.”

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The wrestlers have described Strauss’s behavior, which included inappropriate touching and sexual assault, as an open secret.

Jordan, who was OSU’s assistant wrestling coach from 1986 to 1994, has insisted repeatedly he was not aware of the abuse until players began speaking publicly about it in April.

“Congressman Jordan never saw any abuse, never heard about any abuse, and never had any abuse reported to him during his time as a coach at Ohio State," Jordan’s spokesman, Ian Fury, said in a statement on Tuesday.

Jordan's spokesman Ian Fury told The Hill on Thursday that "the same statement about Congressman Jordan’s knowledge is and will remain accurate."

"He will assist the investigation in any way they ask, because if what is alleged is true, the victims deserve a full investigation and justice," Fury said.

President TrumpDonald John TrumpSchiff: Surveillance warrant docs show that Nunes memo 'misrepresented and distorted these applications' Chicago detention facility under investigation following allegations of abuse of migrant children Ex-Trump aide: Surveillance warrants are 'complete ignorance' and 'insanity' MORE on Thursday also stood behind Jordan, saying he believes Jordan did not know about the abuse.

“I don’t believe [the accusations] at all,” Trump said. “I believe him. Jim Jordan is one of the most outstanding people I’ve met since I’ve been in Washington. I believe him 100 percent.”

“No question in my mind,” Trump added. “I believe Jim Jordan 100 percent. He’s an outstanding man.”

Dailey told NBC that Strauss groped him repeatedly, but said he did not report the conduct because he was ashamed.

“What happened drove me out of the sport,” Dailey told NBC. “So I was surprised to hear Jim say that he knew nothing about it."

“Jimmy’s a good guy,” Dailey added. “But to say that he had no knowledge of it, I would say that’s kind of hurtful.”

One former wrestler told NBC that Jordan joked about Strauss’s inappropriate behavior, including saying, “If he tried that with me, I would kill him."

Strauss, who died in 2005, has been accused of sexually assaulting male athletes from 15 varsity sports. OSU in April opened up an investigation into the extent of the college’s knowledge of the abuse.

Former wrestler Mike DiSabato, who first brought allegations against Strauss, said that he estimates Strauss “sexually assaulted and/or raped a minimum of 1,500/2,000 athletes at OSU from 1978 through 1998.”

Fury said Jordan has not been contacted by the university’s investigators but he would help with the investigation if needed.

“Despite claims to the contrary, Congressman Jordan’s office has not received a request for interview from the investigative team,” Fury said on Tuesday. “We have demanded that they send us the supposed communication and remain willing to assist in any way that we can.”

Jordan, a powerful conservative member of Congress, has been floated as a possible replacement for Speaker Paul RyanPaul Davis RyanPelosi: 'Thug' Putin not welcome in Congress Interior fast tracks study of drilling's Arctic impact: report Dems unveil slate of measures to ratchet up pressure on Russia MORE (R-Wis.).

-Updated 6:46 p.m.