Georgia sheriff, 2 deputies indicted in controversial search at high school

Worth County Sheriff Jeff Hobby
Worth County Sheriff Jeff Hobby

A Georgia sheriff and two deputies were indicted late Tuesday in a controversial drug search conducted in April at Worth County High School.

Worth County Sheriff Jeff Hobby is charged with violation of oath by a public officer, two counts of false imprisonment under color of law and one count of sexual battery, WALB-TV reported Wednesday. The indictment alleges the sheriff and “one of his deputies intentionally made physical contact with intimate parts of a male student’s body by touching the student’s groin,” the TV station reported.

Deputy Deidra Whiddon, also known as Deidra Tucker, and deputy Tyler Turner each are charged with violation of oath by a public officer. Turner also is charged with sexual battery.

Of 36 counts presented to the grand jury, six were returned true bills, 24 were no bills and six were tabled, WFXL-TV reported.

The sheriff locked down the high school for more than four hours for the search on April 14. Body searches were conducted on about 800 students present that day, according to a June article from the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

The sheriff’s indictment states the search was “without probable cause or any other legal basis and without due process,” WALB-TV reported.

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Laura Corley: 478-744-4334, @Lauraecor