U.S. Marshals offering up to $5,000 reward for info on man wanted on charges of sex assault, kidnapping

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SCRANTON, LACKAWANNA COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — The U.S Marshals are offering up to $5,000 for information that can lead investigators to the whereabouts of a Pennsylvania man charged with kidnapping and sexually assaulting a 14-year-old girl back in October.

According to the U.S. Department of Justice, John Vincent Watson, 45, is alleged to have held a girl captive for three days in October, taking her to a Luzerne Borough apartment and two hotels, where the alleged abuse took place.

Police say Watson took the victim to William Smiley’s apartment on Main Street, Luzerne Borough where both Watson and Smiley forced her to take drugs and drink alcohol and sexually assaulted her. Smiley was arrested back in October and has been charged with sexual assault and corruption of minors.

Investigators stated on Oct. 25, Watson left a Plains hotel room and the victim was able to call 911. She was rescued by Plains Township police.

Law enforcement is describing Watson as a black male with black hair and brown eyes. He is 6 feet 1 inch and weighs approximately 200 pounds.

In a statement, the U.S. Marshals Service stated;

“The U.S. Marshals Service and its task force partners seek the public’s assistance in the apprehension of this fugitive to ensure the victim can seek justice, the crimes alleged are extremely severe.”

U.S. Marshal for the Middle District of Pennsylvania Martin Pane

Officials say Watson should be considered armed and dangerous. He has ties throughout Pennsylvania, as well as Los Angeles.

Anyone with information on Watson’s whereabouts should contact the U.S. Marshals Service at 1-877-WANTED2 or use the USMS Tips App.

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