Sexual assault charges filed against Philadelphia youth skateboarding club leader

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- The founder of a Philadelphia skateboarding club has been charged with rape and sexual assault of two children.

Investigators say 52-year-old Rodney Watkins, founder of the "Powerfulnailya" skateboarding club, allegedly met the children back in 2011 and 2012 when the victims were 11 and 12 years old.

The victims reported the incidents to police as adults. Both victims reported interacting with Watkins at several locations including POPS Skatepark at Trenton and Hazzard streets, Whitehall Skatepark at Torresdale Avenue and Wakeling Street, and Paine's Park near the Art Museum.

According to the Philadelphia District Attorney's Office, one victim was a member of a skateboarding team. The other was not a member, but was invited to travel with the team and was also offered meals and gifts from Watkins.

The assaults allegedly occurred at Watkins' home during sleepovers and in a hotel room during an out-of-state trip.

Police say there may be more victims, and ask anyone with information, to contact the Special Victims Unit at 215-685-3251 or call the PPD anonymous tip line at 215-686-TIPS.
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