The director of the Aaron Cohn Regional Youth Detention Center in Columbus, Ga. was arrested on Sunday for gambling, which is a misdemeanor.
Police arrested Jimmie Lee Hooks III and 14 others at a Columbus beauty shop where they were found playing poker for money. Police also found crack cocaine and illegal alcohol sales and charged the owner of the shop with additional crimes.
Hooks has been with the Georgia Department of Juvenile Justice since January 2001 and became director of the Center in March 2010, according to Scheree Moore, the department’s director of communications.
“Hooks has been placed on leave with pay while an internal investigation proceeds,” Moore said.
Since the arrest, the assistant directors are in charge of the Center and things are running like normal, according to Moore.
The Aaron Cohn Regional Youth Detention Center holds 48 boys and 16 girls. The Center provides temporary care to kids who are charged with a crime or have been found guilty and are awaiting court disposition of their cases, according to the Department of Juvenile Justice website. The Center also holds kids who are in state custody and awaiting treatment programs and facility placement.
Moore could not discuss whether Hooks will continue as RYDC director because the investigation is ongoing.
“The investigation is underway and everything is being handled accordingly,” Moore said.
The Ledger-Enquirer in Columbus, GA also covered this story.