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Paralympic gold medalist swimmer's alleged rape and abuse covered up, lawsuit claims

A Paralympic swimmer for Team USA claims he was "maliciously groomed" by decorated swimmer Robert Griswold, according to a lawsuit.

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — A Paralympic swimmer who has autism claimed he was "maliciously groomed" by decorated swimmer Robert Griswold and then raped and mentally abused for a year, according to a lawsuit filed in federal court for Colorado Friday.  

The 63-page lawsuit alleged that Griswold, a Paralympic gold medalist, sexually assaulted the now-19 year-old while the two competed for the United States during the Tokyo Paralympics in Aug. 2021. The lawsuit claimed Griswold groomed the swimmer, who is intellectually impaired, and referred to him as his "little buddy."

The lawsuit also alleged that the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Committee and the United States Center for SafeSport covered up the abuse because Griswold is a champion swimmer whose family is heavily involved in the swimming world.

On Aug. 23, Griswold was issued a temporary suspension by the U.S. Center for Safesport due to "allegations of misconduct." Safesport keeps a public disciplinary database designed to inform people about restrictions and pending investigations.  

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