In wake of the recent allegations against Hollywood executive Harvey Weinstein, social media has had a deluge of conversations surrounding the matter. This led to the #MeToo campaign, where survivors of sexual abuse/assault as well as victims of sexual harassment have come forward to discuss their experiences.
And no, the MMA world is not immune to incidents of this sort.
MMA veteran and pioneer Tara LaRosa took to Twitter to accuse a doctor appointed by the Massachusetts State Athletic Commission of sexual assault.
In a series of Tweets, LaRosa explains that prior to a fight, she was to undergo a “mandatory“ breast exam, or not be allowed to fight at all.
#METOO ...a breast exam is done in NO other state. When I protested, he said I can either let him do it, or not fight. Massachusetts— Tara LaRosa (@TaraLaRosa) October 18, 2017
Legal mind for all things MMA Erik Magraken caught wind of the matter and asked who the person in question was, and LaRosa offered more background of the situation.
Here are the MA medical regulations. I don't see 'breast exam' pic.twitter.com/XuYXzBo35x— Erik Magraken (@erikmagraken) October 18, 2017
To make things worse, LaRosa also revealed her opponent Roxanne Modafferi also had the same thing happen to her at the event, presumably by the same person:
I’ve been mad about it for years. I’ve been through worse shit, but I was angry that he did it to @Roxyfighter and God knows how many others— Tara LaRosa (@TaraLaRosa) October 18, 2017
Which was then confirmed by Modafferi:
We argued for like 30 minutes, too!! https://t.co/AsqUDltxzS— Roxanne Modafferi (@Roxyfighter) October 18, 2017
Magraken was kind enough to offer his advice on how to take action:
This is messed up. Every fighter subjected to a BS 'breast exam' should lodge a formal complaint with the AC. This isn't right. https://t.co/hcKsJJuCjE— Erik Magraken (@erikmagraken) October 18, 2017
Also adding that he has contacted the commission himself, and will share their response when he receives one.
I have written to the Mass AC. I have asked for an explanation of any justification for this practice. I will post their reply.— Erik Magraken (@erikmagraken) October 18, 2017
This incident would have taken place prior to her second fight against Modafferi at the Moosin: God of Martial Arts event headlined by strongman Mariusz Pudzianowski vs former UFC champion Tim Sylvia. That was staged in Worcester, MA in 2010.
If you or someone you know is a victim of sexual assault or rape, please encourage them to contact the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 800-656-HOPE (4673), or visit https://centers.rainn.org/ for a local facility with professional counseling and assistance affiliated with the Rape Abuse & Incest National Network with complete confidentiality.