Southern Indiana gymnastics coach charged with child molestation
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - A former employee of a New Albany, Indiana gymnastics center has been arrested and charged with child molestation.
Christopher Wilkerson, 30, is charged with two counts of child molesting and two counts of attempted child molesting. All of the charges are level 4 felonies.
According to the probable cause affidavit, Wilkerson is accused of molesting two victims under the age of 14 between November 4, 2017 ad November 4, 2019. Police were contacted on Jan. 20, 2020 by a caseworker for the Department of Child Protective Services regarding the accusations.
“When children are involved it’s something that we pay special attention to," Clark County Prosecutor Jeremy Mull told WAVE 3 News. “Those victims were victimized while they were sleeping at night.”
The affidavit stated the victims’ mother alerted authorities after she saw something on a security camera that made her “feel uneasy.”
“What was captured on the video was not the abuse that’s charged here," Mull said. "It was behavior on the defendant’s part that was suspicious that made her believe other things were going on.”
The affidavit stated Wilkerson admitted he was “confused on his sexuality for a long time," and used the victims as a way to explore his sexuality. The paperwork also stated Wilkerson told the staff at Wellstone Regional Hospital when he was admitted following a suicide attempt.
According to a statement from Brittany and Tyler Alexander, the owners of SIGS Sportsplex, Wilkerson worked at the New Albany gymnastics center from Dec. 10, 2012 to Aug. 1, 2016, and then again from April 4, 2016 until he resigned on Jan. 21, 2020.
The owners’ full statement is as follows:
You may have seen an alarming allegation in the news regarding a former SIGS staff member, Christopher Wilkerson. The allegation is serious, and we are shocked and saddened at the news. The nature of the charges involves the abuse of children. We wanted you to know that no reports include that our athletes, staff, or customers were involved in any way. We have no reason to believe that anything occurred at SIGS.SIGS has a lifelong commitment to families, and our number one priority is always the health and safety of those we serve.
- We conduct background and reference checks on all our employees.
- We train and monitor employees with ongoing programs through our own structure, through USA Gymnastics and SafeSport.
- The national programs include training and protocols; SIGS' own programs go beyond that with the standards we employ for optimal safety.
In accordance with our status as a member club and our commitment to safety, we have reported the allegations and charges to SafeSport. We wanted to be transparent with all of our SIGS families too. Again, none of the information involves SIGS customers nor did anything occur at SIGS. When our current location was built, much attention was paid to open-air concepting, with the ability to see and/or hear staff and class interaction. Our programs have a strict instructor or coach to student ratios. We are transparent with parents about our programs and training. SIGS will always work to ensure that our families are safe and know that the responsibility we are trusted with is beyond any other thing we do. Please let us know if you have any questions. We sincerely thank you for the opportunity to be a part of your lives and will continue to ensure that kids and families are safe as they learn and grow at SIGS."
Mull confirmed to WAVE 3 News that as of Monday, the evidence does not suggest there are more victims.
“At this time there is no evidence that he molested anyone else," Mull said.
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