More molestation charges for former CO as more victims come forward

BONIFAY – A former corrections officer arrested last week for molestation of two minor victims is facing more charges.

47-year-old Jack Phillip Cates of Bonifay, just released on a $250,000 bond, turned himself back in to the Holmes County Sheriff’s Office Tuesday evening after two more alleged victims came forward, resulting in additional charges and a new arrest warrant.

The initial investigation came after a local pastor contacted HCSO with concerns regarding a conversation he had with the first two victims. According to law enforcement reports, the alleged abuse went on for several years, and Cates admitted a portion of the allegations to investigators.

One of the new charges include an incident a victim states she reported years ago but “no one believed her.”

Cates’ total charges now include one count of lewd and lascivious molestation of a victim under 12; two counts of lewd and lascivious molestation on victims ages 12-16, and one count of sexual battery.

The investigation is ongoing, and more charges could be pending.

Cates was released Wednesday morning on a $15,000 bond for the second set of charges.

Cates previously worked at Holmes Correctional Institution, where he was a sergeant and led the K9 team for several years until his retirement.

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