Philip Dale Anderson Jr. (Source: Commonwealth Journal)
LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - A former Louisville teacher and football coach has been arrested on suspicion of sexually abusing a former student.
According to court records, the accuser, now an adult, says he was around 11 years old when Philip "Dale" Anderson Jr. allegedly started abusing him and the assaults continued until he was about 14.
The Archdiocese of Louisville said Anderson was a teacher at St. Raphael Catholic School from 1981 to 1993 and coached at Trinity High School during that time. The Archdiocese said they never received any reports of abuse by Anderson, and his file did not indicate any problems.
Both Trinity and Saint Raphael have referred comment to the Archdiocese of Louisville.
“I don't know if he is guilty or innocent. If he is innocent, I certainly hope that word gets out and he is exonerated. If he is guilty, I hope he gets the maximum sentence,” said Cal Pfeiffer, a member of SNAP, a support group for clergy abuse victims.
Anderson is charged with sodomy, attempted sodomy and sexual abuse. He was taken into custody Friday at 2 p.m. at Austin's Restaurant on Brownsboro Road.
“Usually there is multiple victims, rarely is there just one victim,” said Pfeiffer.
Pfeiffer has been with SNAP for more than 10 years. Although Anderson was not clergy, Pfeiffer's group is familiar with similar situations and says it's very common for people to come forward years, even decades later.
“Sometimes it is just something that eats at them and they finally get to a point and they feel like they've got to deal with it, that it is not going away,” said Pfeiffer.
This case especially hits home for Pfeiffer because his son played football at Trinity under Anderson. He says back then the coach was looked up to.
“Very well liked and he did things for the boys, have them over, and befriended them,” said Pfeiffer. “I'm sure for some kids that didn't have a good father figure, he was probably someone they could talk to and everything seemed to be very positive.”
The Commonwealth Journal reports that Anderson also coached at Southwestern High School in Somerset, taking the job after leaving Louisville in 1993. The newspaper says that police and FBI investigated Anderson after his abrupt resignation in 2011, but did not bring any charges.
It's not clear if the 2011 investigation is related to these recent charges. WAVE 3 News tried to reach out to Anderson's lawyer in Somerset for comment, but he did not call back.
The Archdiocese of Louisville and Metro police encourage victims of abuse to come forward.