12 Step Stewart Marchman Act Adolescent Facilty has fired Corey Hodges 34, over allegations of sexually abusing minor girls at the facility. Corey Hodges had been arrested in 2007 on felony charges for bringing drugs into the Tomoka Correctional Institution while working there as a correctional officer. The charges were dropped after he went through the Stewart Marchman ADI Level 1 program (anti-drug initiative) diversion program. How did this man get employment as a “Child Specialist” at Stewart Marchman Act after that ? What kind of background checks do they do? What training did he have?
Child specialist from Palm Coast charged with molestation
A Palm Coast man who worked as child specialist at a residential addiction program in Daytona Beach has been arrested on a charge of molesting a teenage client.
Other teenagers interviewed by sheriff’s investigators said Corey Hodges, 34, would stare at their bodies, make inappropriate sexual comments and purposely drop things so he could watch them bend over to pick them up, said Volusia County sheriff’s spokesman Gary Davidson.
Hodges, who started working as a child specialist at Stewart-Marchman-Act Behavioral Healthcare in February, was fired after the allegations surfaced earlier this month.
A 15-year-old girl and a client at the Residential Adolescent Program run by Stewart-Marchman-Act said Hodges molested her two times last month while she was in her room. On both occasions, the girl said Hodges touched her inappropriately, Davidson said.
Both times, the girl said Hodges told her not to tell anyone about it. On a third occasion, the girl said after she broke her finger playing football, Hodges drove her to the hospital. On the way back, the girl said Hodges rubbed her thigh and told her to pull up her shorts, but she refused and nothing more happened, investigators said.
Other teen girls were interviewed by investigators with the Sheriff’s Office’s Sex Crimes Unit.
A 17-year-old told investigators Hodges would ask her for hugs, made comments about other girls’ bodies and talked about beating up a boy she was dating because Hodges was jealous. An 18-year-girl said Hodges told her she should be a stripper because she had a nice body. And a 14-year-old girl revealed to investigators that while going through heroin withdrawal, Hodges ordered her to get out of her bed even though she told him that she was naked. She got up and tried to cover herself with a blanket, but she said that Hodges ordered her to drop it.
Hodges denied the allegations but surveillance video from inside the facility showed Hodges going into one of the girls’ rooms, in violation of staff policies.
He also violated policy when he drove the girl to the hospital instead of having a female employee do it, Davidson said.
Investigators offered Hodges an opportunity to submit to a voice stress analysis, but his lawyer told him not to take the test.
On Monday, investigators with the sheriff’s Sex Crimes Unit obtained a warrant for Hodges, who was arrested Tuesday by the Flagler County Sheriff’s Office and transported to the Volusia County Branch Jail in Daytona Beach. He is being held on $60,000 bail, Davidson said.
Hodges was arrested for possession of marijuana and introducing a controlled substance into Tomoka Correctional Institution, where he worked as a correctional officer in 2007, but court records show the charges were dropped after he completed a pretrial diversion program. Hodges gave up his correctional officer certification in 2009.
In 2008, a Stewart-Marchman facility on Tiger Bay Road near Daytona Beach was on officials’ radar after at least three employees of a program for delinquent girls were accused of having sexual relations with some of them.
Anyone with more information or complaints about Hodges is asked to call the sheriff’s Sex Crimes Unit at 386-323-3574