The former president and CEO of USA Gymnastics has bonded out of the Sevier County Jail after U.S. Marshals and local officers arrested him on an indictment into evidence tampering in the Larry Nassar case.
According to NBC News, Steve Penny paid a $50,000 bond and was released from jail. He now heads back to Texas and his family and will be facing prosecution in Walker County.
Penny's next court date is Oct. 29 in Walker County. He won't face court in Sevier County and has no further reason to stay in Tennessee.
The U.S. Marshals Service took Penny into custody in Gatlinburg Wednesday night after officers with the U.S. Marshals-led Smoky Mountains Fugitive Task Force located him at a cabin.
"He was asked to come to the door. He did. He was very cooperative," US Marshal David Jolley said. "The arrest occurred without incident."
Penny's lawyer said he was on vacation with his family in Gatlinburg and did not know about the indictment.
Penny was booked into the Sevier County Jail and is currently awaiting extradition to Walker County, Texas to face charges. A grand jury indicted Penny for tampering with evidence during the investigation into USA Gymnastics Dr. Larry Nassar's sex abuse scandal.
"On September 28, 2018, a Walker County Grand Jury convened to continue their ongoing investigation of the Karolyi Ranch and those individuals who may have committed offenses related to the conduct of Dr. Larry Nassar at that location. On that same day, the Grand Jury returned an indictment on Penny for Tampering with Evidence, a third degree felony," the press release said.
According to the indictment, Penny is alleged to have tampered with evidence related to the activities of Nassar at the ranch, saying it was done with the purpose of "impairing the ongoing investigation by destroying or hiding the documents."
During the investigation done by Texas Rangers and Walker County officers, the USMS said sources reported Penny ordered the removal of the documents at the ranch after learning the investigation was underway.
The investigation said the documents were delivered to Penny at the USA Gymnastics HQ in Indianapolis. To date, U.S. Marshals said those records have not been recovered and their location remains unknown.
Texas Rangers said they believe those records are essential to their investigation and that by removing them, Penny prevented them from reviewing documents that would have aided in the Nassar investigation and other offenses that might have occurred at the ranch.
Members of the U.S. Marshals’ led Smoky Mountains Fugitive Task Force in Penny’s arrest included the Sevier County Sheriff’s Office, the Knox County Sheriff’s Office, the Blount County Sheriff’s Office, and the Knoxville Police Department.
Jolley of the Marshals service said that it is not uncommon for the marshals and members of the task force to participate in these types of arrests.
"Sometimes it will be a high profile white collar type-case where we receive an arrest warrant and are asked to locate that individual as well. So they’re not always violent fugitives when these cases happen," he told 10News.