ATHENS, Ala. – A convicted sex offender remained jailed Tuesday after the 25-year-old man, posing as a teenager, was caught taking a 14-year-old girl to a dance at her middle school, Athens authorities said.
Athens Middle School faculty members stopped Gregory Ray Brooks at the gym door because he appeared to be much older than his date at the Friday dance, Athens Superintendent Orman Bridges Jr. said.
"He didn't look like the 17-year-old he said he was," Bridges said. "The faculty did an excellent job of monitoring who was coming in and catching this guy. They kept him from other students and maybe helped this young lady out of a bad situation."
Police Capt. Marty Bruce said Brooks was convicted in Limestone County in May 2004 for first-degree sodomy on an 8-year-old victim.
In his arrest Friday, Brooks was charged with public intoxication and failure to comply with the community notification act by loitering on school property. He remained in the Limestone County Jail on $500 bond for the public intoxication charge and $5,000 bond on the community notification charge.
Bruce said Tuesday he did not know if Brooks had a lawyer.
Police said the teen did not know he was a sex offender and her mother came to get her at the dance.
Assistant Principal Joanna May asked Athens investigator Katrina Flanagan, who was working security at the dance, to talk to Brooks after her staff stopped him at the door.
Brooks ran from the school while Flanagan talked to a witness, but he was later found at a nearby coin laundry.
Bridges said that to his knowledge, this was the first time Brooks had been on campus with the teen.
"When you have events like ball games and plays, it's hard to know who is coming to a school," Bridges said. "That's why I'm glad the faculty was monitoring the door at the dance and caught this guy."