Youth football coach faces additional charges

The District Attorney’s office filed new child sex abuse charges on Tuesday against a youth football coach who previously was arrested last month on allegations he raped two boys.

Authorities now claim that Leon Watson, 24, of the 2400 block of W. Diamond St., sexually assaulted five boys in all as well as an “intellectually disabled” man. Although the attacks allegedly occurred inside Watson’s North Philly home and targeted boys from that neighborhood, Watson also had a connection to the Northeast as a part-time coach with the Rhawnhurst Raiders from August to October this year, the DA’s office said.

An anonymous tip triggered the initial investigation into Watson, according to the DA. On Nov. 10, authorities arrested Watson for allegedly abusing two brothers, ages 8 and 9, who played for a North Philly based team founded by Watson called the “Little Vicks.” Watson initially was charged with rape, involuntary deviant sexual intercourse, false imprisonment, reckless endangerment, endangering children and numerous other offenses.

Following the arrest, authorities received several more complaints about Watson from other possible victims. Much like the first two victims, the three additional youth victims reported that they had played for the Little Vicks and had stayed at Watson’s house on multiple occasions. Watson allegedly assaulted the boys during the sleepovers.

The DA’s Office provided no details on the circumstances of the assault involving the disabled man.

Rhawnhurst Raiders representatives have said that Watson was never an official coach with the program, although he had brought a couple of youths to team practices and had participated in team drills.

The investigation is ongoing, according to the DA’s Office. Anyone involved with the Raiders or the Little Vicks who may have information about Watson is asked to call police at 215–685–3251. ••