WASHINGTON, D.C. (Monday, January 28, 2008) -- Howard University men's coach Joseph E. Okoh is being held without bond in a Virginia jail after being arrested Friday evening for allegedly soliciting on-line for sexual purposes a person he believed to be a 13-year-old girl.
Okoh, 40, was charged with one felony county of using a communications system to solicit a person under 15-years-old with lascivious intent. He is being held at the Central Virginia Regional Jail in Orange, Va.
Okoh appeared today before the Louisa Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court and was denied bond, pending another appearance before the court Friday. He was arrested by the Louisa County Sheriff's Office as part of the Southern Virginia Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force.
The Louisa County Sheriff's Office alleged Okoh traveled from his home in the Washington suburb of Arlington, Va., nearly 100 miles for the purpose of engaging in sexual activity with a person who he thought was a 13-year-old girl, but actually was an undercover agent.
According to the police report, the investigation of Okoh began and ended on Friday.
Howard University issued a statement today saying Okoh has been suspended from all university activities, pending completion of the investigation. "Howard University has zero tolerance for the violation of any university policy and our code of conduct," the statement read.
In Okoh's first season at Howard, the Bison closed with five straight losses to finish 3-8-5, 1-3-1 in the Atlantic Soccer Conference. Okoh's son Michel was a senior member of the 2007 Howard team.
Okoh came to Howard after a successful stint as coach at NCAA Division II Shepherd University, where he led the Rams to a 38-13-9 record in his last three years at the Shepherdstown, W.Va. school. In 2005, Okoh was named "West Virginia Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Coach of the Year."
Before Shepherd, Okoh coached both boys and girls at four high schools in Washington's Virginia and Maryland suburbs. In 2003, Okoh was appointed by the West Virginia Soccer Association as the Olympic Development Program District I coaching coordinator for boys and girls.
Okoh was a highly successful collegiate striker at Metropolitan State College in Denver, leading the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference in scoring in 1990 and graduating with a bachelor of science in geographic information systems in 1991. He briefly played professionally, both indoor and outdoors, including outdoors for the Colorado Foxes of the A-League, then the top American league.