The FBI reportedly made numerous crucial errors during its investigation into sexual abuse allegations against former USA Gymnastics national team doctor Larry Nassar, which included not treating the case with the "utmost seriousness."
The FBI acknowledged its conduct was "inexcusable and a discredit" to the nation's premier law enforcement agency amid accusations of negligence in the long-awaited watchdog report by the Justice Department's inspector general made public on Wednesday the Associated Press reports.
The watchdog report raises questions about how the agency treated its investigation into the case and addresses several missteps between the time in which allegations against Nassar were initially reported and his arrest.
The inspector general's office claims that "despite the extraordinarily serious nature" of the initial allegations against Nassar, FBI officials in Indianapolis didn't respond with the "utmost seriousness and urgency that they deserved and required" once notified.
When the agency did respond, FBI officials are reported to have made "numerous and fundamental errors," while also violating bureau policies during the case.
The FBI is accused of failing to conduct any investigative activity until more than a month after an initial meeting with USA Gymnastics, as well as interviewing three athletes by phone, but never speaking with two other gymnasts, despite confirmation that they were available to meet in-person during the investigation.
The FBI's Indianapolis field office also failed to take responsibility for its missteps and provided incomplete and inaccurate information to internal FBI inquiries, according to the watchdog report via the AP.
The FBI has publicly rebuked its employees who are accused of failing to act correctly during the case and said the reported negligent steps by the agency "should not have happened."
“The actions and inactions of certain FBI employees described in the Report are inexcusable and a discredit to this organization,” the agency said in a statement.
Nassar received federal child pornography and 10 counts of state sexual abuse charges in Michigan in 2016 and is currently serving decades in prison after hundreds of girls and women accused him of sexual abuse during his time working for Michigan State and USA Gymnastics -- which is based in Indiana -- under the guise of providing medical treatment.
The inspector general's office said it reviewed thousands of documents and spoke with more than 60 witnesses, including victims, parents of victims, prosecutors, and both current and former FBI employees while conducting its watchdog report of the Nassar case.
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