Man that had previously plead guilty to child molestation charges was released early and has been arrested again for child sexual offenses

Derrick Alan Crooms, 45, of Newton County, Georgia. [Image credit: Rockdale Newton Citizen]

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Decatur, Georgia: On October 15, 45-year-old Derrick Crooms was arrested following a coordinated investigation by the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, the Oconee County Sheriff's Office and the Newton County Sheriff's Office after the U.S. Marshals Service was called in to locate him.

 

Crooms remains in custody in the Newton County Jail without bond.

 

At the time of his arrest Crooms was facing two counts of incest, two counts of aggravated sexual battery, two counts of aggravated child molestation and a charge of enticing a child for indecent purposes.

 

Since his arrest, additional charges have been filed against him bringing the total number of counts to eighteen. He is now facing three counts of rape, three counts of incest, four counts of aggravated child molestation, five counts of child molestation, two counts of aggravated sexual battery, and one count of enticing a child for indecent purposes.

 

In 1996 Crooms pleaded guilty to a charge of child molestation. His victim, Jamie Fulcher, now 34, has come forward and spoken about what happened to her.

 

"It happened to me for a year before I had the courage to tell someone about it," she told WAGA. "He took my innocence when I was seven. I don't know if you can ever really heal from that."

 

Crooms was sentenced to 20 years in prison, but was released after serving just four years of the sentence. In 2017 he successfully petitioned a judge to have his name removed from the sex offender registry despite his guilty plea and Fulcher's objection.

 

"Their argument was that he was a changed man," she was quoted as saying. She feels adamantly though, that these new charges show that he most certainly has not changed.

 

"I do think that our justice system has failed us," she told WAGA. "I believe that once you plead guilty to raping children, molestation charges, you shouldn't get out of prison at all. You shouldn't get a second chance."

 

Removal from the registry list allowed him to freely move about the country with his wife Rachel Overton who worked as a traveling nurse without informing anyone of his past.

 

Despite being a mandated reporter, Overton was found by investigators to have become "aware of Crooms' criminal acts and failed to report them to law enforcement." She was arrested in Wisconsin by the Racine County Sheriff's Office on February 23 and charged with cruelty to children in the third degree and failure to report as a mandated reporter.

 

She was extradited to Oconee County Georgia but has since been released on bail.

 

Anyone with information about cases concerning child exploitation is asked to contact the Georgia Bureau of Investigation Child Exploitation Unit at (404) 270-8870. Tips may be submitted anonymously by calling (800) 597-TIPS(8477) or by going online to the GBI website.

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