Police: Raleigh woman ran substance abuse center without license, embezzled money


SMITHFIELD, N.C. (WNCN) — A Smithfield woman is facing multiple charges after police say she operated a substance abuse counseling center without a license, embezzled money from the business and prescribed drugs illegally.

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Demetria Zanita Brooks, 42, was the executive director of The Raven, a substance abuse counseling center located at 1652 Booker Dairy Road.

Records show the center’s owner is Demetria Gore, which the Cumberland County Register of Deeds’ Office confirmed is Brooks’ maiden name.

Following an investigation that lasted two months, Brooks has been charged with embezzlement, substance abuse counseling without a license, and authorizing prescriptions without a physician’s authorization, police said.

According to police, agents were able to gather information from employees of The Raven, as well as former patients, and were able to develop probable cause to believe that Brooks was improperly administering substance abuse treatment and had also conducted counseling without proper licenses.

“I’m shocked because I never thought that. I never thought that was going on there,” said neighbor Mary Fowler.

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Brooks was also employed by Garner Lighthouse before becoming executive director of The Raven. Investigators are asking that anyone who has received substance abuse treatment from Brooks at either business between May 2016 and today contact the Smithfield Police Department’s Narcotics Division at 919-934-2121.

Police said more charges are expected in the case.

Brooks was given a $35,000 secured bond for her current charges and remains in custody.

The N.C. Substance Abuse Professional Practice Board allows people to search and verify credentials at their website.

 

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