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University of Michigan hopes to settle doctor abuse lawsuits

Andy Hrovat, right, talks with Thomas Evashevski after a news conference on Feb. 27 in Southfield. Hrovat, Evashevski and Tad Deluca, left, are three of the University of Michigan wrestlers who say they were abused by a sports doctor. (AP file photo)

ANN ARBOR (AP) — The University of Michigan hopes to settle lawsuits from hundreds of people who say they were sexually abused by a sports doctor who worked at the university for decades, officials said Tuesday.
The school aims to develop a process outside the court system to provide “more certain, faster relief,” in addressing misconduct claims against Dr. Robert Anderson, Board of Regents Chair Ron Weiser and school President Mark Schlissel said in a news release.

The goal also is to maintain the privacy of victims who have come forward, the officials said. Anderson worked at U-M from the mid-1960s through 2003. He died in 2008.
Campus police began looking into Anderson in 2018 after a former student-athlete wrote to athletic director Warde Manuel about being sexually abused by Anderson during medical exams in the early 1970s.
Attorney Mike Cox, whose firm is suing the University of Michigan in federal district court, said he thinks the lawsuits are driving the university’s efforts.
“It is only in a courtroom where the survivors (and the public) can learn the truth,” Cox said in an email. “It is in a courtroom, where survivors can compel witnesses through subpoenas to tell the full truth of Anderson’s abuse and UM’s cover up of that abuse.”