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Olympic gymnast and Larry Nassar victim McKayla Maroney told NBC's "Today" show the former doctor began abusing her the first time he examined her.

“He told me he was going to do a checkup on me and that was the first day I was abused,” the 22-year-old told "Today" host Savannah Guthrie in an interview that will air at 7 p.m. Sunday on WDIV-TV (Channel 4) in Metro Detroit.

Maroney said she was 13 when the first assault happened. She said Nassar abused her every time he saw her, which was hundreds of times.

Maroney also said Nassar told her she couldn't tell anyone about the assaults because "nobody would understand this and the sacrifice that it takes to get to the Olympics, so you can't tell people this."

She spoke to Guthrie at the New York Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children's spring luncheon.

 

Maroney posted on Twitter in October that she was sexually assaulted by the former Michigan State University physician.

In December, Maroney filed a lawsuit against the United States Olympic Committee and USA Gymnastics, claiming they had her sign a confidentiality agreement as part of a financial settlement to keep her sexual abuse by Nassar secret. Based in Indianapolis, USA Gymnastics is a nonprofit and the national governing body for the sports in the United States.

Maroney’s attorneys allege the agreement is illegal because California law forbids confidential civil agreements involving potential felony sex crimes.

A month later, USA Gymnastics said it wouldn’t penalize the Olympic-gold-medalist if she decided to speak about her experience as one of Nassar’s victims.

Nassar is serving three prison sentences for molesting dozens of gymnasts and other girls and pleading guilty to having child pornography. His final sentence, 40-to-125 years, was handed down in February. 

Earlier this month, Michigan permanently revoked Nassar's medical license.

cramirez@detroitnews.com

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