Meth jar found in truck bed
Monitor Staff Reports
ATHENS–A blue 1988 Ford pickup with an expired registration sticker
caught the eye of patrolling county deputies in Seven Points last week.
Patrols around the Kaufman-Henderson county line north of Seven Points
have been stepped up lately in response to citizen complaints of drug
The pickup was driven by 40-year-old Calvin Dean Reno – a man with a
very long rap sheet dating back to 1995, with petty drug charges,
failure to carry car insurance, parole violations and escape from
custody among the arrests.
A search of the pickup discovered a milky substance which later tested
positive for methamphetamine – more than 200 grams of the stuff – in a
quart-sized glass jar.
The jar was wrapped in a wet blue T-shirt, and when opened gave off an
odor of anhydrous ammonia.
Henderson County narcotics task force investigators Darrell Waller and
Kenny Collard were called to the scene April 29 and assisted in testing
the substance, as well as questioning Reno.
Reno was arrested and charged with manufacture/delivery of a controlled
substance, more than 200 grams and less than 400 grams.
He also was charged with expired vehicle registration and failure to
provide proof of financial responsibility (no insurance), and
transported to the Henderson County jail.
Reno is being held on a $250,000 bond.
Deputies John Daniels and Mitchum Patterson initiated the traffic stop
around 1:30 p.m.
A second arrest that day involved the possession of marijuana, more than
four ounces and less than five pounds.
Collard and Waller answered a complaint of narcotics trafficking at the
1000 block of Barbara St., in the Victoria Place Apartments in Athens.
They found a half-pound of marijuana and a handgun.
Jason Baker, 21, was charged with felony possession of marijuana and
transported to the county jail.
Judge says Cook violated
By Michael V. Hannigan
Monitor Staff Writer
ATHENS–Eight months ago, Gun Barrel City businessman Curtis Cook pleaded
guilty to aggravated sexual assault of a child in Judge Dan Moore’s
173rd District Court.
The crime is a first degree felony, punishable by five to 99 years in
prison, but Cook came away with 10 years of probation.
Monday, Moore ruled that Cook violated that probation.
During a hearing that opened Friday, Moore ruled that Cook violated his
probation on four counts:
• He failed to register as a sex offender when he moved from Kaufman
County to Gun Barrel City in January.
• During a time in December, 2008, he lived in Burleson, within 1,000
feet of a park were children were likely to play.
• He failed to obtain prior consent from the Henderson County Probation
Department before moving.
• He failed to complete the 10 hours per month of Community Service
required by his probation.
The hearing was recessed Monday afternoon during the penalty phase and
will be resumed at a later, currently undetermined date.
Cook could be returned to his former probation, or get the original
penalty range assigned to the crime – five to 99 years in prison.
Cook was not only indicted in Henderson County but was also indicted
three times in Kaufman County on the same charge. He was arrested in Gun
Barrel City in November, 2007, and then again in February, 2008.
Cook pleaded guilty Sept. 29, 2008, as part of a plea agreement worked
out with the Henderson County District Attorney’s Office. Details of the
assault were never released, but officials said the child in question
was younger than the 14 listed in the statute.
The deal also covered the three indictments in Kaufman County.
The Monitor highlighted the Cook case in an October, 2008, story
exploring why some confessed pedophiles receive probation.
In interviews for the story, Moore and then-District Attorney Donna
Bennett spoke about how the judicial system sometimes listens to the
desires of the victim’s family when deciding how to proceed in a child
sexual assault case.
That was the situation in the Cook case, Moore said – the victim’s
family did not want to put their daughter through any more trauma.
The other thing officials said was that revoking probation is easier
than getting a conviction. Revoking probation does not require a trial,
only a hearing before a judge.
That is how Cook found himself once again in front of Moore, with
current District Attorney Scott McKee the prosecutor.
According to testimony Friday, Cook, the former owner of Cedar Creek
Vision in Gun Barrel City, moved to Burleson in December, 2008, to try
and get a new start on his business. The place he moved to, however, was
close by a park; something Cook said he did not know.
Defense attorney Scott Williams said Cook moved back to his prior home
in Kemp as soon as he was notified about the park.
According to Henderson County Probation Officer Donna Ward, however,
Cook did not follow proper notification procedures on either of the
Cook ran into the same sort of trouble in January.
According to his probation, he was not allowed to stay in the house with
a minor child. But in January, his step-daughter and her 7-year-old son
came to stay at the house in Kemp.
Williams said Cook kept a room at a Gun Barrel City motel and stayed in
Kemp during the day, but went to the motel at night to comply with his
“There was never a time when (authorities) didn’t know where he was,”
Williams pointed out.
Once again, however, Ward testified Cook did not follow proper
procedures for notifications and registration.
Cook also failed to log any community service hours in December.
Kaufman ISD closes schools
Monitor Staff Reports
KAUFMAN–Another school district has closed as a precautionary measure to
arrest the spread of the H1N1 (swine flue) virus.
Kaufman ISD announced Monday it was closing until Monday, May, 18.
Superintendent Todd Williams ordered all Kaufman ISD campuses closed
starting May 5, due to the discover of a probable case of the virus.
“This decision is for the safety of our students and staff,” Williams
stated in a press release.
Kaufman County Health Authority Dr. William Fortner confirmed that the
H1N1 virus was suspected in a sick 4-year-old attending school in the
Fortner also reported hearing about an adult in Kemp with a case of the
H1N1 virus, but had no other information about it.
Kemp ISD remains open.