Local man arrested, charged with child solicitation
According to the Sulphur Springs News-Telegram, Gary Lee Sillivan of Cooper, 43, is in Hopkins County jail on charges of online solicitation of a minor, according to Sheriff’s Chief Investigator Lewis Tatum. He is being held in lieu of $35,000 bond on the second-degree felony charge.
Sgt. Corley Weatherford and Investigator Daniel Winn intercepted the man’s efforts to make sexual contact with a 15-year-old Sulphur Springs girl.
“We had a subject soliciting a young female here at one of our city parks,” Tatum said to the local newspaper. “Sgt. Weatherford had been in contact with him all night, and he finally told us where to meet him and there we were.”
Investigators said the man had apparently been waiting near Kids Kingdom since about 10 p.m. before he was surprised by deputies as he was relieving himself near a tree. The chief investigator said the sheriff’s department is aggressively pursuing child predators of any kind.
“Leave our children alone,” Tatum said. “They continue to do it, so we are going to continue to arrest them.”
Tatum said District Attorney Will Ramsay and his office is on board with the effort and is taking all the necessary steps for warrants to effect the arrests of the child predators.
“They just continue to do it,” the chief investigator said. “I guess they are going to continue to do it. That’s one reason we want the media to put it out there — leave our children alone. They continue to do it and we are going to continue to work them.”
The Internet Crimes Against Children task force is not limited to Hopkins County.
“Anytime they get a lead, they track it down to wherever it goes,” Tatum said. “They will get in contact with an agency wherever the offense is being committed and help them out, or we will do it. Wherever the lead goes is where we will go, and when they show up to pick up the juvenile, we’re there instead of the juvenile.”