Jury deliberates chess instructor’s fate, will return to case Monday

DELAWARE, OH (WCMH)– F. Leon Wilson, 62, took the stand on Thursday in his own defense. Just before 11 a.m. Friday his jury began deliberating his fate.

The jury was dismissed around 4:15 p.m.

Wilson is on trial in a Delaware County court for allegedly inappropriate touching a four and seven-year-old chess students.

The four-day trial involved video interviews with both girls done by the Child Advocacy Center at Nationwide Children’s Hospital. Medical experts testified for both the prosecution and defense.

Also testifying was the Delaware County Sheriff’s Office investigator, along with parents of both little girls.

The three counts of Gross Sexual Imposition were brought after two alleged incidents, one in a private Delaware County school, the other at a Bexley elementary school during April 2015.

During closing arguments Defense Attorney Brad Koffel told jurors that if a child says a coach or teacher assaulted them, the burden of proof is put on teacher or coach and that is not the way it should be.

“Maybe it is all being made up but what reason does the families have, absolutely no reason for those families to make up a story,” said Mark Sleeper, the Delaware County Assistant prosecutor.

Koffel told jurors about Wilson’s choice to take the stand.

“When Mr. Wilson takes the stand that is about as risky as it gets in my business,” he said.

“I ask you to give my client the benefit of doubt,” Koffel said.

The prosecution countered.

“There is what he said and what the evidence shows,” said Doug Dumolt.

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