Former Imhotep Charter football standout Isheem Young, who was charged in December with robbing a Wawa in South Philadelphia with two accomplices, is scheduled to be back in court Tuesday.
Young, 18, is out on bail after first being held at the Curran-Fromhold Correctional Facility. Unless the case is delayed, he will be at the Criminal Justice Center in Center City with his lawyer, Richard F. Klineburger III.
Since the former four-star prospect and Penn State recruit was 17 when the crime occurred last July 30, Klineburger said Thursday that he has filed a decertification motion with the district attorney’s office.
“We’re not arguing guilt or innocence at this point,” Klineburger said. “As of right now, my client is still innocent until proven guilty.
“Our goal is for the court to deal with him as a juvenile instead of as an adult. We would be amenable to treatment through the family court system instead of the adult court system.”
A swift and hard-hitting safety who was also an offensive threat, Young was a four-year starter at Imhotep. Ranked the No. 6 recruit in the state and No. 170 in the country by ESPN, he orally committed to Penn State last July in a video produced by Bleacher Report.
Young, who honed his skills while playing youth football for the Cecil B. Moore Stingrays and Northwest Raiders, is seen in many photos smiling and gesturing on the field.
“He’s a very fine young man, has maintained a positive attitude through all this, and understands the gravity of the situation,” Klineburger said. “Still, in many ways, he’s an adolescent.”
Klineburger said Young was enrolled in a high school but declined to say what school “for privacy reasons.” A source told the Inquirer he is attending Ben Franklin High on North Broad Street.
“The first step is that he be able to remain in school and graduate,” Klineburger said. “I want to make sure he gets the opportunity to go to college.”
The 5-foot-10, 200-pounder participated in a 7-on-7 tournament last month in Upper Marlboro, Md., with a few of his former Imhotep teammates, according to sources.
“We see him quite frequently,” Imhotep head coach Nick Lincoln said. “There are some colleges that have reached out to me about him. But, of course, we have to see how things play out in court.”
Young said in a tweet last month, “Even when it got rough I kept my head up.”
“He truly wants to move forward in life and knows that he has certain talents and gifts that he does not want to waste,” Klineburger said.