Athens Review, Athens, Texas

August 29, 2013

‘Most wanted’ offender caught

Man with Henderson County ties arrested near Amarillo during check of suspicious vehicle

Rodger G. McLane
The Athens Review

Athens — Doug Otis Sims — who has ties to the Henderson County area — was placed on Texas’ Top 10 Sex Offender’s Wanted List on Aug. 20 and was arrested Aug. 26 in Goodnight, Armstrong County, southeast of Amarillo.

According to a press release from the Armstrong County Sheriff’s Office, Armstrong County Dep.  Brandon Brown responded to a report of a suspicious vehicle on Kilo Road, south of Goodnight. When the deputy arrived at the scene, he found Desiree Williams and a Ford F-250 which was experiencing what Williams said was mechanical problems.

“Deputy Brown ran the pickup’s license plate and found it had been altered, and found the pickup belonged to Doug Sims who was wanted on three outstanding felony warrants from Shelby County,” Craig Thomas, Armstrong County Emergency Management Coordinator, said.

According to the Texas Department of Public Safety, Sims was convicted of sexual assault of a child and was required to register as a sex offender for life. He last registered with the Center Police Department in 2011, but failed to comply with his terms of probation. Additionally, Sims was wanted for his connection in the burglary of a Shelby County home.

“Deputies with Carson and Donley Counties assisted with the search,” Thomas said. “Also, Texas Department of Public Safety troopers, a DPS fixed-wing plane and dog and horse teams from the Texas Department of Criminal Justice aided in the manhunt.”

Inmates at a nearby Texas Department of Criminal Justice facility in a department truck saw Sims in a field of grass roughly 75 yards from a search command post, Thomas said.

“Both Williams and Sims were arrested and booked into the Armstrong County Jail around 2 p.m.,” Thomas said.

Panola County deputies were involved in a manhunt for Sims earlier in August when members of the U.S. Marshals’ service raided a home in southern Panola County and another home just over the Shelby County line.

“Sims fled into the woods from the Marshals’ service, which is when Constable Bryan Murff became involved with the search,” Panola County Sheriff Kevin Lake said. “We believed after the initial contact with him here in the county, he had possibly fled from this area, but in the care of caution, we continued our search until we received the news of his capture in the Panhandle.”

Lake said he appreciated the help and cooperation of county residents who assisted his agency during the local search for Sims.

This article was distributed by the Associated Press.