Chesterfield parents concerned over sex offender at practice - KSLA News 12 Shreveport, Louisiana News Weather & Sports

Chesterfield parents concerned over sex offender at youth football practice

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CHESTERFIELD, VA (WWBT) -

Chesterfield parents reached out to 12 On Your Side concerned after learning a convicted sex offender was on the football field with their children.

William Thompson, Jr. of Chesterfield is on the sex offender registry. He was convicted of taking indecent liberties with a child by a custodian and failure to register. The charges date back to 2004.

"I was shocked to hear William Thompson (Coach Will) of the Tri-City Tigers was a convicted sex offender," wrote the parent. "Our children's safety is our utmost concern."

We contacted Mr. Thompson. He had no comment, but he insisted he was not a formal coach. He says he was just a parent. That statement led us to contact the Tri-City Tigers President for clarification.

"Were you aware that Mr. Thompson is a registered sex offender?" we asked President Antonio Bedford.

"I was not aware until recently," replied Bedford who admitted Thompson was a frequent participant on the field at practice.

We even found a photo on the team's Facebook page.

"He just got the title, 'Coach Will,'" said Bedford. "There are a lot of parents out there that we call coach who aren't really on the active coaching roster. They are just at practice."

NBC 12 legal analyst Steve Benjamin had some sobering information for parents.

"There is nothing in Virginia law that says a convicted sex offender can't be a coach of children," said Benjamin who notes it is an independent league. "If it is private property, if it is not school sanctioned or school sponsored, if it's not unsupervised contact there may likely be no violation here."

The league says they have asked Thompson to step back from his active role with the team. They encourage him to focus more on his role as a parent booster of his young son on the league.

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