Former Jail Officer Charged with Embezzling Inmate Funds

Troup County Sheriff’s Investigators have charged a former detention officer with felony theft after discovering evidence that he stole significant amounts of inmate cash over several months.

Thursday morning, Troup County Jail Detention Officer Jason Hudgins was arrested and charged with Felony Theft by Taking after an audit revealed evidence that he stole more than a thousand dollars from the inmate accounts fund.

Sheriff’s Office officials say Hudgins, assigned as the Inmate Accounts Officer, had worked for the Troup County Sheriff’s Office since November 2015.

As a part of his duties, Hudgins would oversee funds being placed on inmate accounts so that they can purchase certain items within the jail, snacks, toiletries, etc. Inmates are not allowed to have cash within the jail, so friends and family put money on an account for them, which had been managed by Hudgins.

Hudgins resigned on September 27 for unrelated issues, so Sheriff James Woodruff requested an audit be completed by Kimble’s Food by Design, who provides commissary service for the jail. This was done as part of standard operating procedure so that the next officer assigned to the position could start fresh.

At the time, deputies had no reason to suspect wrongdoing and Hudgins resignation had nothing to do with any internal investigation.

During the audit, Kimble’s Food determined that over the last three month period, over $1,800 had gone missing from inmate accounts.

Sheriff’s Investigators later contacted Hudgins on October 5 to speak with him about the missing funds and he confessed to stealing “over a thousand dollars.”

As a result, Hudgins, age 34, was arrested and charged with Theft by Taking (Felony) and booked into the Troup County Jail.

Hudgins was later released on bond.