Operation targeting child predators catches Paragould man, several others

PARAGOULD, Ark. – The 14-year-old teen you’re sending inappropriate messages to is really a DTF agent collecting evidence to arrest you.

If any of these suspects had considered that thought, they wouldn’t now be facing serious felony charges for preying on children online.

John Simmons, 49, is claiming he was conducting an investigation of his own when he was caught by the First Judicial District Drug Task Force’s Operation Kandy Krush. Simmons was arrested after exchanging messages with whom he believed to be a 14-year-old. Some of the photos appear to have been exchanged on SnapChat. Police say Simmons sent sexually graphic photos of what he purported to be his genitals.

Over several days, Simmons discussed meeting up for sex, and even discussed picking the child up from school during lunch and taking her back to Paragould for sex

First Judicial District DTF

It wasn’t really a teen the man was chatting with. It was an undercover DTF agent. Simmons was arrested at his residence in Paragould.

Authorities say Simmons admitted to communicating with the profile and sending sexually graphic material, but stated he was merely conducting his own “investigation” into human trafficking. He never contacted law enforcement.

Simmons is to be charged by the First Judicial District Drug Task Force with Internet Stalking of a Child, 5-27-306, a Class B Felony. He will appear before St. Francis County District Judge Mike Smith at 1 pm today.


Several others have been apprehended recently as well, as part of the ongoing operation.

On Sunday, April 14, 2019, Garland Williams AKA “TuTu”, 36, of Forrest City, was arrested after allegedly sending what he believed to be a 15 year old female sexually graphic photos of his genitals. Williams asked her to send him sexually graphic photos of her, and offered to rent a hotel room to meet up with the child for the purpose of having sex. He was arrested by a DTF special agent and deputy with the St Francis County Sheriff’s Department. In an interview with investigators, Williams admitted to communicating with the profile and sending the photos, police said. Williams was charged by the Drug Task Force with Internet Stalking of a Child, 5-27-306, a Class B Felony. His bond was set at $100,000 and he made bond that evening.

Tutu

On Monday, April 15, 2019, Jerry Reyes, AKA “Jay”, AKA “JR”, 34, of Forrest City, was arrested after allegedly sending what he believed to be a 15 year old female pornographic videos, discussing sex acts, and talking about meeting up for sex. “If I knew u were like real n not the feds we could,” Reyes messaged. Reyes clarified, “But between everyone else we couldn’t do nothing till u were 18 years old. Legally speaking.” According to Reyes, he is a Latin Kings gang member. He was arrested by the Drug Task Force with the assistance of the St Francis County Sheriff’s Department. Reyes was charged by the Drug Task Force with Internet Stalking of a Child, 5-27-306, a Class B Felony. He will appear in St. Francis County District Court today at 1pm for his first appearance.

Reyes

On Tuesday, April 16, 2019, Dustin Spencer Clowers AKA “Richard Dangle”, 35, of Harrisburg, was arrested after allegedly sending what he believed to be a 15 year old female sexually graphic photos of his genitals, and asking for sexually explicit photos from the purported child. He also sent videos of himself performing a sex act and discussed meeting up with the child for the purpose of having sex. He was arrested by a DTF special agent, Wynne PD detective, and deputies with the Poinsett County Sheriff’s Department. Clowers, who is on Probation with the Arkansas Department of Community Corrections (ACC), had outstanding felony warrants in Poinsett County for Failure to Appear on Battery III and Drug Possession charges, as well as a Probation Revocation. Clowers was trespassing and living in a trailer without the owner’s knowledge or permission at the time of his arrest. In an interview with investigators, Clowers admitted to communicating with the profile and sending sexually explicit material. Clowers was charged by the Drug Task Force with Internet Stalking of a Child, 5-27-306, a Class B Felony out of Woodruff County. More charges are expected in Poinsett County. He is currently being held in the Poinsett County Jail.

Dangle

19 have been arrested as part of the operation, thus far.

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3 Comments

  1. Maybe you people should verify your facts before publishing a story. It’s not guilty until.proven innocent contrary to the liberal sensationalizing media. As a personal life long friend if Mr. Simmons. I can tell tell you right now. This smear has been added to a list of people facing a future lawsuit for defamation. And to set the record straight. He never believed he was addressing a 14 yr old. But the 26 yr old pictured on the profile. The case notes and arrest affidavit were falsified by omission of certain facts. There’s more. Much more.

    • You can’t sue press for defamation for reporting what authorities say. Thanks for setting the record straight, Mr. Simmons. I mean, Senator

      • I have no claim to fame like the above person. I am merely a former co-worker who has seen the papers. A woman and a mother of 3. This should have never happened. There were clear omissions of certain key facts. I have no idea , what, if anything John might pursue from a legal standpoint. After seeing and hearing everything, I was forced to ask myself a couple of questions. For example why did it take almost 3 weeks for this cop to actually file for a warrant? The whole conversation was less than an hour in total length. 3 times John told the cop as it turns out, the account was fake. What is more scary? This officer was setting up this “sting” operation on a crowded public school campus in Wynne. According to the papers I saw, this cop set up ‘agents’ to catch him. John never went. Never had any intention of going anywhere to meet anyone, let alone a kid. John has never been in trouble for anything outside a traffic ticket. Not in the 12 years I have known him. He has helped alot of kids. I trust him to this day with mine. Absolutely no doubts there. But I’m really glad my kids don’t attend that public school. The cop looked bad when John didn’t show. So he made it personal. One would think after all the Russian collusion b.s. and corruption we see in the highest levels of our legal system , even the most liberal of media sources would understand, just because the ‘authorities’ say it, doesn’t make it gospel.
        Finally, this cop feels the need to list where he went to school but then proceeds to say how many different agencies of law enforcement he has bounced to and from. That’s disconcerting in and of itself. He did his best to twist everything John said. I mean who would believe an accused sex offender? Right?
        As far as I know of John isn’t doing anything but working to get his daughter to a safe home. You see as a result of all this and the ancient laws there. His daughter was placed with her mother. John’s ex. A woman who lost custody of their daughter due to drug and alcoholism. It should be noted that CPS in that state interviewed his daughter twice. No hint of any misconduct. Gee. Not a big shocker. If my kids ever were in trouble, he is the person I would hope they reached out to. I know for a fact he has played a key role in successful suicide interventions with kids. He helped this families seek the professional care needed. I’m not a genius. I work as a L.P.N. in my home state, in a drug rehab facility. I am smart enough to see this was a witch hunt over a bruised ego. John has never approached me as the type who claims to be perfect. He even said about this situation that had he fled even the appearance of wrong like God says, it would never have happened. But he has lost everything. Homeless and destitute after his release until just recently. My friend didn’t deserve that. I’ve asked John what, if anything, he plans to do in regards to damage control. He simply said this. Whether truth wins the day in this life, or is revealed when we all stand before God someday in the next life. The truth always wins the day and no man made authority can change that reality.
        I read the prior comment and reply on this string. I can promise you John hasn’t commented here or anywhere this report was made in the news for that matter. He could care less what the news says. He became that way in the wake of the 2016 election coverage.
        He is one of my best friends. He was there for my late husband who passed in 2018 from a rare form of throat cancer. When I told him I was replying to this, he said there was no point. He said it would just result in deflection and exchange of words, if it was even posted at all. Fact is John has friends that simply know better. We live in a society where lies become truth simply because it’s a juicy story accepted by the majority. Similar accusations in the news every day against politicians and other leaders and celebrities and athletes. Doesn’t matter if those people did it or not. The media has them convicted before there’s ever a shred of evidence produced or facts proven. It is beyond sad. Epic fail.
        John’s focused on himself and the future right now. He has reunited with the girl he was seeing before this mess. FYI she’s well into her 30s. They are getting married soon, as they had planned originally. Finally another thing lied about through omission, is that John willingly unlocked his phone for the police. John willingly interviewed without an attorney believing he was dealing,by default, with a man of just conscience because he was law enforcement. Only to realize about half way through everything he would say ,no matter what it was, would be turned and twisted. He said at that point, he just let them think whatever. I spoke with him earlier last night when he told me about this comment string. He says, you know,5 months ago I was a different man. Like anyone else that’s human made my fair share of mistakes in life. But this wasn’t about justice, it was about vengeance and I will go to my grave believing that.
        You people wanted to break a ‘story’ and my friend. Well, grats! You almost succeeded on both counts. He broke down to me. He said Tina ,they were quick to judge without a jury, utilizing only heresay. Now that it’s over and I am free, noones interested in hearing what really happened, or seeing the documents and papers the lies and half truths. He said I don’t want anyones pity. But the discovery of truth was never a goal in the case. I was just another arrest on someone’s resume. He said, we simply live in the end times where God says people are no longer lovers of truth, but of themselves. He says I know it was about a reckoning over a bruised ego. The agent was operating out of his jurisdiction, hence the need for state police presence. The warrant that would have been issued via NCIC could have been served by any policeman. But the man chose to make a special trip to execute it himself. A 2 hour drive. I cooperated fully having nothing to hide. He paused. He said the worst part. Is that the man laughed at my daughter’s tears as he cuffed me. Because at that moment we had no clue what was going on. His hands were shaking so bad when he arrested me. It was altogether just weird. It was like he was tweaking on caffeine or speed. When he dropped me off at the jail that had been built in the 1940s, literally. He said the arresting cop told him not to tell inmates what the charge was. He says I did anyway along with the entire story. Then what he said next made my jaw hit the floor. He says instead of threats and the like from inmates. Some really big guys took to being protective. He soon discovered why. Hearing the inmates share some stories. That cop had behaved similarly before.
        John wasn’t keen on me saying anything. Said it didn’t matter because people that truly new him and had for years knew better and wouldn’t jump ship. But I felt as his friend and given our history I had to say something. Truth is if he were a Round-Up weed killer cancer victim ,ambulance chasing attorneys and law firms would be knocking down his door. But since it was this charge , the title of which is a sort of misnomer itself, No one has the courage to step up? Help this man? ….bet.
        The last thing John said before we hung up? He says if.I have learned anything throughout all this…it’s 1 jail nor prison will be we rehabilitate any of the real criminals. It only makes them bitter and angry and amplifies their criminal tendencies. 2 I realize now that just because they carry a badge and gun doesn’t make them right or mean that they will do right. 3 that comments just like the one to his political friend on his comment, by some young aspiring inexperienced journalist attempting to spin served to prove his points made.
        I’m in my late 20s. Never had a dad. I have called John ,’dad’ from the time we met. He has been there for me. He has never acted wrong or even made me think he would. He is a God send to my kids. You see.my 14 yr old daughter is one of the kids whose life he saved through intervention while her dad was still alive. Dad…I love you, we love you. We aren’t going anywhere. You are the kindest most compassionate person I have ever met. You would put yourself on the street if it meant you could help anyone to a better place. And dad ,it’s my opinion that you are and always will be twice the man that policeman/agent is or ever will be. His thoughtless action resulted in school children and even your own being put in harm’s way. What would he have done, had you actually been this criminal he tried painting you to be? We see it in the news everyday spin and no spin. I know you will fuss at me for even commenting. But I want the world to know, the best I know how that you are one of the bravest and most caring human beings I have ever known . And that you would give up your life to keep any one, especially kids from being harmed. People need to know when your daughters friend killed herself at the age of 12 a couple years back in Paragould that you and your daughter were the first to start a suicide awareness campaign on social media in the wake of that. And that you both have helped kids quit ‘cutting’ and other self harm practices and got them and their families to help they needed. I don’t want you mad at me dad. But me and the kids don’t want all of this to make you stop caring or helping. I just hope others will see this and join me in sharing their stories. You’re not the boogey man. That I know for sure. You aren’t the one that should have lost everything and been on the street. I know that for sure too. I just pray a lawyer or firm sees your story and steps up to do what’s right. It could happen. I pray it does.

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