Three-time gold medalist Gabby Douglas has become the third member of the "Fierce Five" U.S. women's team to say she was abused by a former USA Gymnastics team doctor.
She made her allegations public as she was apologizing in a statement issued Tuesday for her comment on Twitter last week about ex-teammate Aly Raisman's stance on sexual assault victims.
Douglas drew criticism on social media after tweeting that women shouldn't dress "in a provocative/sexual way," in response to claims by Raisman that Dr. Larry Nassar had sexually abused her. In her statement on Tuesday, Douglas wrote that she didn't see her comment as victim shaming because, "I know that no matter what you wear, it NEVER gives anyone the right to harass or abuse you. It would be like saying that because of the leotards we wore, it was our fault that we were abused by Larry Nassar."
She continued her Instagram statement by saying, "I didn't publicly share my experiences as well as many other things because for years we were conditioned to stay silent and honestly some things were extremely painful. I wholeheartedly support my teammates for coming forward with what happened to them."
Raisman, the captain of the 2012 and 2016 Olympic gold-medal-winning teams, said in an interview with "60 Minutes'' earlier this month that she was among the young women sexually abused by Nassar. Raisman told "60 Minutes" she was 15 when she was first treated by Nassar, who spent more than two decades working with athletes at USA Gymnastics before being fired in 2015.
Previous to that, McKayla Maroney, who won two medals at the 2012 Games, said last month she was molested for years by Nassar.
Douglas, the 2012 Olympic all-around champion, issued an apology last Friday on Twitter following her since-deleted remarks toward Raisman, saying, "i didn't correctly word my reply & i am deeply sorry for coming off like i don't stand alongside my teammates."
i didn't correctly word my reply & i am deeply sorry for coming off like i don't stand alongside my teammates. regardless of what you wear, abuse under any circumstance is never acceptable. i am WITH you. #metoo— Gabby Douglas (@gabrielledoug) November 18, 2017
Douglas expanded on that apology in her statement Tuesday, saying: "I understand that many of you didn't know what I was dealing with, but it is important to me that you at least know this. I do not advocate victim shaming/blaming in any way, shape or form! I will also never support attacking or bullying anyone on social media or anywhere else."
Nassar, 54, has agreed to plead guilty to multiple charges of sexual assault and faces at least 25 years in prison, a source told The Associated Press on Tuesday. He is charged with molesting several girls, under the guise of treatment at his home and a campus clinic, while working for USA Gymnastics and Michigan State University. All but one were gymnasts.
Separately, Nassar is awaiting sentencing for child pornography. He's also being sued by more than 125 women and girls.