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Ray Brookins convicted

Ray Brookins, the former administrator of the Texas Youth Commission facility in Pyote who was indicted on charges of sexually assaulting teenagers at that facility in 2007 was convicted Thursday in Odessa.

The one-word verdict came after a four-day trial and a five-year investigation into a sex abuse scandal that prompted the restructuring of the Texas Youth Commission. A second former administrator, John Paul Hernandez, was also indicted on multiple counts and is awaiting trial.

In two full days of testimony, 11 witnesses testified against Brookins, including the victim himself. Prosecutors also presented DNA evidence that linked the victim’s sperm to Brookins’ office. Brookins did not testify, and the defense offered no witnesses of its own.

If you need a refresher on the TYC scandal, this Observer story by Nate Blakeslee is a great resource. Brookins was sentenced to ten years, and will file an appeal. The trial of Brookins’ co-offender Hernandez will follow later. Grits has more.

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15 Comments

  1. br allen says:

    what a dirt bag, I hope he gets the full penalty. It’s a shame what kids will have to go through for the rest of their lives. He gets his life back after 10 years, they never will.

  2. ham2mtr says:

    Very true, If he hadn’t been tramatized by Brookins, his victim would never have committed and got sent to prison for two armed robberys.

  3. The Truth says:

    Interesting, I’ve read all the comments on the blogs. Of course, I can’t comment on exactly what went on at TYC since I don’t know the details. However, I do know the man himself. I’ve personally known Mr. Ray Brookins for approximately 13 years. In fact, I probably know him better than anyone else, especially those commenting to the blog who haven’t a clue about the individual. None the less, my comments will fall upon death ears, for he was essentially considered guilty from the beginning. I was there when he worked at the Cotulla Prison system, when he attended Texas A&M International University in Laredo, Texas, and when he went through the initial trial in Austin, Texas. The man that I know has always carried himself in a manner befitting a gentleman. He is highly religious, dedicated to perfection, and helped to better the lives of many others, including myself. In fact, as the Lord is my witness, I was there when he informed me that he was going to leave the Cotulla Prison System as Captain to take the Director’s position at TYC. I informed him that that would be a mistake – even if it meant a pay increase. Yes, Ray was a stern soul who demanded perfection – sometimes with an overly bitchy attitude, as with most authoritative figures. I told him that his aggressive attitude would spark rebellion, skepticism and deception. My exact words were: “Being a single man, DO NOT TAKE THE POSITION.” Ray is a black man who has helped many people achieve their goals in life – no matter how large or small. I sat with Mr. Brookins on many occasions and discussed the case in great detail, asking him that question most wanted to know. “Ray, did you do these things?” Ray has always told me the truth because he knows that I would never judge him and that God would handle any misfortunes or mental problems. The man adamantly stated “NO” with tears in his eyes. “I did not do these things.” As seen in many of the articles, Ray is graciously debonair, cultured and sincere in his beliefs and stature. Wherever the man went in life jealously quickly followed. Another powerful black man brought to his knees, I say. That’s unfortunate because I know the good he’s done and could’ve done in the future. TYC had a family culture that already existed before Mr. Brookins and his strong arm tactics disrupted its overall existence. Yes, I personally know the man in-depth. So I ask all who persecuted him from the beginning: “Are you sure this was not a plot to bring down another strong black man?” No, I’m not trying to change your opinions. I just want you to realize that hate can stem from a few to a great many, starting with that centralized institution of development. Remember the way many Americans persecuted Michael Jackson in his later years, then had the audacity to morn his death – the very same ones that called him pervert, molester and freak. I’m just bringing this to your attention because I know the man that extends beyond the local and international newspapers, blogs and various other websites. I know him to be an Angel – one who would never do these Atrocities to any young child. Of course, everyone has to judge for themselves because the damage is done and there is no reversing the outcome. Nonetheless, I do believe he should’ve followed regulations more closely. Whenever someone is over children of any age, never be alone at any time without another adult witness, staying visible at all times – even verbally recording consultations with individuals and groups so that words or actions are not misjudged. Therefore, in closing, thank you for your attention and have a nice day…

  4. THE TRUTH (2) says:

    The Defense Team was obviously terrible. In order to achieve “Reasonable Doubt”, why did they not concentrate on facility access. How many individuals had keys to Mr. Brookins’ office: Maintenance, the Secretary, other TYC employers who worked there for approximately 13 years. Hint###…. The victim’s DNA evidence was the only evidence found at the scene, which was Mr. Brookins’ personal office space. Again, how many individuals had keys to this office area? In all, what videos and sexual toys someone has in their personal home is irrelevant – unless there was child pornography, which there was not! So think: “Are you still sure this was no Ploy of Deception?”

    Wake up America!!!!!

  5. BL says:

    I don’t think he testified at his trial. If your innocent you should testify. Jurys will hold that against you when deliberating even though there not supposed too. He used to work at the San Saba facility where I worked. He was accused of watching pornagraphy on the net, but just got wrote up. That was the only thing that I knew at our facility. I don’t think he was defended well. Hopefully he will get an appeal. I was investigated too and fired. There was like a dozen youth against me, but I had a good lawyer. It was found out that the youth lied. Some of the youth complaints was for other staff and not me. One youth brought in said he lied cause the youth were going to beat him up if he didn’t lie on me. The Superintendant didn’t look at the cameras which is supposed to protect the youth and staff. He told the judge advocate the reason he didn’t look because it didn’t record audio. He didn’t look at the paperwork to see if people reported anything unappropriate. He didnt question the staff I work with on the dorm at all. Even the youth investigators report on me was thrown out before my hearing. Me and my attorney don’t know the reason for that. Anyway I got my job back and now I am suiing the state for retaliation, defamation and negligence in my case etc. The retaliation from the Superintendant was for a grievance that was filed against him from a female worker which I helped her with. So my attorney believes I was retaliated against by my Superintendant. So things can get crazy as it was in my case. So Mr. Brookins deserves a proper defense.

  6. The Truth says:

    BL,

    You are so right! His defense was terrible. I truely hope he gets an appeal because he really doesn’t deserve to be behind bars. Basically, the state needed a fall guy for all the complaints. The top 2 took the fall, which is highly unusual. I guess they felt that he was the person in charge; therefore, he has to take the rap. That’s completely insane. I truely hope all is well for him. I wish I knew which prison they had him in so that I could go and visit him. I’m sure he’d really appreciate it! BL, if you know where he’s being held, give me the information. I attempted to contact his mother, but I believe she had her number disconnected or temporarily off the hook. I really don’t blame her. As was told throughout the trial, she was harrassed on the regular by reporters, which is completely insensitive. BL, I’m sure he would really appreciate your words of confidence as well. The man is and was truly a positive force who helped many individuals rise to their full potential, especially blacks – including both men and women. That’s unfortunate that his reputation has been slandered, labeling him a perverted sex offender. Another strong brother brought down by the Justice System, I say. I truly would like to ask Texas and many of the states throughout America one basic question. Why are many of our positive, powerful black men being attached and defamed of their character by Society? There seems to be a pattern emerging throughout various communities. As I repeated previously, the lifelong achievements of Michael Jackson was held in question, and Tiger Woods and various other strong-minded rappers who are now in prison or have previously served prison terms. Yes, this is a major issue that must be held in question. America, you have been called out! In closing, thank you for your attention and have a nice day…

  7. Datrice says:

    Wow! I’m really am saddened to know that people suffer from many things in life. I am especially bothered when children are harmed to any extent.

    With that being said I feel compelled to share a few of my thoughts on the article regarding how Brookings was peering through windows and pulling offenders to work details at night. As a teacher myself, a former Correctional Officer, Sgt., and Lieutenant in TDCJ – Texas prison system (13 years), I have had the pleasure of working with Ray closely. I CLEARLY understand that we, at times, do allow offenders to work details at night. Every organization has it’s rules but it’s just not uncommon that supervisors walk around and look through windows, actually that is part of their job responsibilities. How so? They could be checking on the offenders behavior (perhaps surprisingly to some not all offenders go to bed as directed, some actually crawl around on the floors and sneak around, fight, play, have sex, make weapons, smoke, etc.) checking on staff whereabouts-correctional staff could be injured or sleeping for that matter, so supervisors are charged with the overall opeation of the facilty, to include Managing by walking around.

    I can’t say what a person wont do and haven’t done because I simply don’t know what actually happened, if anything. What I can say is that I’ve worked with Mr. Brookings and he has always been respectful, professional, upright when it comes to treating offenders as “people”, intelligent, a man who followed the rules, he was fun to be around, that is, if you took care of business, he knew the rules and held his staff accountable for their conduct. Likewise he held himself to a high standard. I learned a great many things from him because he didn’t go along to get along – at times he had to stand alone because he was doing the right thing. What I do know is that we have a creator that will judge all of us in due time and I could live another lifetime trying to correct my errors. I hope and pray that Mr. Brookins did not comprimise himself in no form or fashion especially with a child that he was in charge of protecting. I can’t imagine that he would do so. I will pray not only for the children and their family but also for Ray and his family.

    Do you know of anyone that has been sent to prison that was innocent?
    Have you ever heard of people trying to rebell against their supervisor?
    Have you ever seen people make mistakes, big mistakes?
    Have you ever made mistakes? Big Mistakes?
    Have you ever know offenders – juveniles, and/or adults, or Jo Blow next door to lie?
    Have you ever lied?
    I’ve seen innocent people released from Texas prisons because they were found to be “Not Guilty!” after spending many years as a guilty man.

    As a person that believes in “Doing the Right Thing” I must say if Mr. Brookings is guilty I’m sadden for his victim(s) and him. But he, too, should be held accountable (as his heart will say, if his mouth doesn’t). I just Do Not think that he is guilty of molesting any of the offenders.

    I, too, will be happy to write and/or visit him to help encourage him to keep his head up and await the real trial that we must all go through.

  8. Someone who has known him for years says:

    Well, I too know Ray, and have since we were 3 years old. Before everyone rushes to judgement, you cant ever know for sure what happened because you werent there. However, I do know that his life has not been easy and that if he was guilty of any of this, it is because he has his own abuse demons in his past that he has struggled with for years. I dont condone anything that he is accused of, but I also feel like he should have received the same kind of support when he was a boy that all the accusers are receiving now. Im just saying….

  9. Negrito says:

    Truth, this is just a very sad, sad, situation. I am in complete disbelief about my former classmate. Well, did we all attend TAMIU together? If so, i have been looking for you? Does my screen name ring a bell? Search for me on LinkedIn now that I live in Houston.

  10. The Truth's Final Posting says:

    Negrito, I’ve searched for you for years. I believed you were still in Florida. That’s were I was conducted most of my searches. Yes, the Ray Brookins situation is a sad, sad affair. All that education, training, work experience and years of hard work down the drain. Even though he stressed his innocence to me, professionals must always protect themselves and guard against deception, especially being the new kid on the block. Negrito, I conducted a search on LinkedIn; however, I’m not sure I’ve located the correct name. My new email address is [email protected]. Oh, a message to all those individuals still reading this blog, please don’t use my personal email. This message is aimed only at Negrito. Therefore, respect my privacy! Thank you for your attention and have a nice day…

  11. The Truth's Final Posting says:

    Oh, I apologize, Negrito, for the typos! I meant to say “That’s where I conducted most of my searches…

  12. concerned says:

    I don’t put anything past anyone, unless you are that person’s shadow you CAN NOT say what they would or would not do, and not because someone is professional, educated, charming and carries themselves well makes them INNOCENT. That’s why he and his college was able to abuse so many children because the same naive mindset of the people who so wanted to believe he looks the part so he MUST be innocent, or I know his so he MUST be innocent. When is the last time you saw someone walking around with a sign that stated in bold letters “I am a pedophile or am a rapist?” All those children can not possibly be lying. If he wasn’t the perpetrator, why didn’t he take some kind of action when those complaints were filed, look into the allegations and report the REAL perpetrator. He should get life without the possibility of parole, along with any other prison or correctional facility staff who chooses to abuse their inmates, let them feel how it is when the shoe is on the other foot. I hope he gets raped every day of that 10yr sentence. And as for you “the truth” I hope you don’t have any kids for I can just imagine what kind of danger they would be in for if the perpetrator doesn’t look the part you would not believe your child has been abused, and god forbid if it’s a family member you definitely wouldn’t believe them because you have known them too long. Your logic is the reason why people like your friend is able to continue abusing young people.

  13. concerned says:

    …correction, meant to say he and his colleague.

  14. The Truth says:

    Well, “Concerned”, I can tell you’re educated. Are you someone directly related to the case, or are you simply a closed-minded individual charismatically driven to read blogs giving your personal viewpoint, airing your “prejudicial insight,” as if your a professional psychologist! As for your statement referring to me rearing children, placing them in “harms-way”, sir/madame, that would never happen under my direction. First, you teach your children right from wrong at an early age, teaching them to report any suspicious activity from jump, not allowing themselves to be placed in a correctional facility giving up your FREEDOM. Second, if these actions did take place, why did they allow it to continue for such a long time? Concerned, even though I can tell I don’t care for you too much, I’d grant you the same appreciation – especially if I considered you as friend! No, I will not allow myself to be guided by prejudicial actions, condemning Mr. Brookins to a life sentence of “persecution and damnation!” Just to let the world know, he will be given rehabilitation, he will be given on-going support of family and friends, and he will be given back his life – as GOD is my witness! Thank you for your attention and have a nice day…

  15. The Truth says:

    Correction…”Giving up their FREEDOM!”