Brad Koffel Represents Chess Teacher Accused of Sex Abuse


Sexual abuse case involving F. Leon Wilson, 62, goes to jury for deliberation today, after defense and prosecution offer closing arguments. Verdict should be announced on Monday.

Brad Koffel is representing F. Leon Wilson, a chess instructor charged with three counts of gross sexual imposition. Wilson’s four-day trial concluded with both prosecution and defense presenting their closing arguments this morning. The jury deliberated for over four and a half hours on the information presented, before they were dismissed by the judge at 4:15 p.m. The verdict is expected to be announced on Monday.

Wilson is on trial for allegedly touching a four-year-old girl at Prep Academy in Lewis Center and a seven-year-old girl at Maryland Avenue Elementary in Bexley. The defendant was the last witness during the trial, where he reasserted his innocence. He said he was shocked at the charges, which he received last year, after returning from a chess tournament in Greece. He initially thought the incident was a prank, but realized the severity of the charge when he was in handcuffs.

The Maryland Avenue Elementary student testified on Wednesday, where she told the forensic interviewers that Wilson had touched her private parts. The allegations from the 4-year-old accuse the teacher of the same actions. The parents of the two plaintiffs assert the girls went into detail.

Laura A. Brodie, a clinical psychologist based in California, testified on Thursday. She said that very young children, like the two girl, can have difficulty deciphering between reality and fantasy. They have limited recall. She also explained how adults can influence children and said,

The way their brains work they are going to follow you. That's why we have to be very careful.

Brad Koffel, along with the prosecution, gave their closing arguments this morning. He asked the jury to focus solely on the evidence presented, rather than being guided by their emotions. Too often the burden of proof falls to the accused.