CLARION - A Clarion County jury Sept. 24 convicted Floyd Harry Watson, 45, Knox, on 111 charges relating to the rape of a girl over a six-year period.
The now 20-year-old victim testified Sept. 23 the first day of the two day trial -- that Watson coerced her to commit sex acts on him at various times from the time she was 11 years old until she was 17 years old at locations in Ashland Township and other nearby areas.
Watson was convicted of one count of rape; one count of involuntary deviate sexual intercourse; 14 counts of involuntary sexual intercourse with the threat of forcible compulsion; 14 counts of involuntary deviate sexual intercourse with a person less than 16 years of age; 14 counts of sexual assault; 14 counts of aggravated indecent assault without consent; 13 counts of aggravated indecent assault with a person less than 16 years of age; one count of endangering the welfare of a child; one count of the corruption of a minor; 13 counts of indecent assault; 13 counts of indecent assault of a person less than 16 years of age; and 14 counts of statutory sexual assault.
Clarion County Judge of Common Pleas Sara Seidle-Patton ordered a pre-sentencing investigation for Watson, including a review by the sexual assessment board. A sentencing hearing will occur after those processes are completed.
The charges stem from an investigation initiated in August of 2019 byClarion-based state police.
During the trial, the jury heard testimony from the victim.
Clarion County Children and youth Services became involved in the case after two friends of the victim notified the agency. Another witness testified he observed Watson take the victim into a bedroom and the lock the door.
A substantial portion of the testimony was graphic.
Defense attorney Leonard Berger questioned the victim repeatedly about the frequency of the acts and the time and location of the violations. At one point the victim broke down and requested a recess.
After the verdict was delivered, Clarion County District Attorney Drew Welsh thanked the jury for their consideration in "such a serious matter."
"The jury listened to the evidence," said Welsh. "The victim was a creditable witness. She conducted herself bravely in a very unusual situation. It is a good day for Clarion County that a person who would commit such a heinous crime to a child is off our streets."
Watson is a former Ashland Township supervisor who resigned from that position in October of 2019, a short time after state police started the investigation of the sexual assault charges.