Nations enters not guilty plea

Published 12:07 am Thursday, November 27, 2014

NATCHEZ — The former administrator of the Adams County Juvenile Justice Center will have to put up some kind of cash if he wants to remain free while awaiting trial.

Charles Kevin Nations, 42, pleaded not guilty to the charge of embezzlement by a public employee at his arraignment Wednesday.

During the proceeding, Circuit Court Judge Al Johnson told Nations he would have to post a $20,000 cash bond.

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Nations had been free on a $50,000 recognizance bond, meaning he was released without payment of the bond, but would have been liable for the full sum of the bond had he failed to show up for court.

“You are not going to be out on a serious matter like this on a recognizance bond, on only your signature,” Johnson said. “You are going to have to put up some money.”

Though county officials have previously said Nations allegedly embezzled approximately $165,000 in a reported check-diverting scheme in his capacity as the juvenile justice center administrator, the indictment returned against him by the grand jury this month only notes the amount was “over $100,000.”

During the hearing, the court found Nations to be indigent — he told the judge he had not worked since resigning from the juvenile justice center in July — and appointed attorney Kevin Colbert to represent him.

When Johnson asked Nations if he had state retirement, Nations said he could apply, but did not have it yet.

Colbert asked for discovery in the matter to be turned over so the state’s evidence could be reviewed by the defense, which Johnson ordered.

The case will be prosecuted by the Mississippi Attorney General’s office.

Nations has until Dec. 3 to post the cash bond or he will be jailed while he awaits trial.