The Mobile County Sheriff’s Office announced today that one of its own deputies had been arrested for allegedly abusing two children under the age of 16.

MCSO spokesperson Lori Myles announced that Lt. Paul Bailey had been arrested by the Alabama State Bureau of Investigation (SBI) and charged with first and second-degree rape, two counts of sexual abuse and second-degree sodomy.

According to a statement released by Mobile County District Attorney’s office, all of the charges against Bailey involved a minor child over the age of 12.

Mobile County Sheriff Sam Cochran was previously made aware of the charges by District Attorney Ashley Rich, who was the first to receive allegations about Bailey’s behavior. Rich said her office then requested that SBI conduct a thorough investigation.

After grand jury proceedings earlier this month, a four-count indictment was handed down against Bailey, who was arrested this afternoon around 2:30 p.m. According to jail records, Bailey doesn’t have any arrest history within Mobile County.

“We are continuing to work with SBI on this investigation and will begin our disciplinary procedures immediately,” Cochran said Tuesday, in his only public statement on the arrest so far.

Mobile County Sheriff’s Deputy Paul Bailey was arrested May 15 for the alleged sexual abuse and rape of two minor children over the age of 12. (MCSO)

Bailey joined the MCSO in 2002 and was promoted to lieutenant in 2017, according to the department.

All of the charges he faces come with potentially severe penalties.

First-degree rape is a Class A felony, punishable by 10 to 99 years in state prison as well as a potential life sentence.

Second-degree rape carries a punishment range of 2-20 years in prison, and both sex abuse charges, which are misdemeanors, are punishable by up to a year in jail.

The grand jury that indicted Bailey also included a recommended bond of $127,000 for all counts against him, which included stipulations for electronic monitoring and to have no contact with the two victims if he’s released.

According to Rich, the cases against Bailey will proceed to circuit court for a jury trial.