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Harlem Choir Teacher Jailed For Sexually Abusing Students, DA Says

By Aidan Gardiner | February 15, 2017 3:05pm

MANHATTAN — A Harlem choir teacher was sentenced to up to life in prison Wednesday for sexually abusing two students at the elementary school where he worked, prosecutors said.

Darnelle Watts, 29, abused the 10 and 12 year old boys at Promise Academy II between September 2014 and June 2015, according to the Manhattan District Attorney's office.

“As a choir teacher and after-school aide, this defendant worked with children each and every day and there is cause for concern that there may be additional victims in this case,” District Attorney Cyrus Vance said.

Watts, who is 6-foot-2 and 245 pounds, worked at the Harlem charter school from 2013 to 2015 and abused the younger boy, who was one of his students, on and off school grounds, according to prosecutors and jail records.

He abused the older boy only at the elementary school, prosecutors said.

He was convicted of predatory sexual assault against a child, sexual abuse and endangering the welfare of a child last month, prosecutors said.

He was sentenced to 20 years to life in prison, prosecutors said.