Miller County sex offender facing new charges in Texas

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A man convicted of sexual abuse in Texarkana nearly 20 years ago was in a federal court Tuesday for failing to register as a sex offender.

Bobby Charles Cooks, 62, is required to register regularly and to notify authorities if he moves, changes jobs or plans to travel. Cooks plead guilty in Miller County, Ark., in 1998 to sexual abuse, residential burglary, robbery and battery and received a 10-year prison sentence. State court records and the Arkansas Department of Correction show Cooks has violated sex offender registration laws again and again. Cooks has received several terms of probation in Miller County for failing to register as a sex offender and for being a sex offender living too close to a school or daycare which were later revoked.

Cooks appeared Tuesday before U.S. Magistrate Judge Caroline Craven in the Texarkana Division of the Eastern District of Texas for arraignment. He entered a not guilty plea with the help of Texarkana lawyer Craig Henry. Cooks’ indictment alleges he violated sex offender registration law in April and July. Craven set the case for trial in October.

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At Cooks’ first appearance Tuesday, Assistant U.S. Attorney Ryan Locker asked Craven to keep Cooks behind bar while his case proceeds. Cooks was already being held in the Miller County jail on a state court failure to register charge when federal officials on the Texas-side charged him with the offense for which he appeared Tuesday.

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