Friday, November 10, 2017

TOP STORY >> Brooke case ends in fine, probation

Leader staff writer

Former Ward District Court probation officer Mark Brooke entered a guilty plea to patronizing a prostitute, a Class B misdemeanor, during a bench trial hearing Wednesday at the Lonoke County Courthouse.

Circuit Court Judge Sandy Huckabee sentenced Brooke to three months supervised probation, a $500 fine and court costs.

Brooke, with family in the audience, and attorney Hubert Alexander representing, changed his plea from not guilty entered in May.

Brooke was arrested on Jan. 18 by the Lonoke County Sheriff’s Office for allegedly soliciting prostitution from an undercover officer posing as one of his probationers. The sheriff’s office set up a sting after receiving complaints about Brooke’s alleged conduct with two women on probation.

A female deputy went undercover to investigate the allegations made against Brooke. The deputy went to Ward District Court on a made-up charge and was sentenced to probation. She met with Brooke that evening.

According to the affidavit, Brooke almost immediately had an inappropriate conversation with her. They talked about her job as a stripper at the Paper Moon Club in Little Rock. Brooke talked about private shows and how he liked performing a sex act.

The comments were made while he was advising the woman about her probation and when to contact him to come to his office.

The next day, the undercover deputy received a call from Brooke, saying he wanted to meet up later that day for a lap dance and extra activities.

Brooke made several other calls to the deputy. Investigators reported that Brooke’s conversations were clearly soliciting the woman for sex.

A meeting was set up and Brooke was taken into custody for sexual solicitation.

During an interview with detectives, Brooke confirmed he had a sexual relationship with one of the female probationers who reported the activities to the sheriff’s office and he had taken her to motels in North Little Rock.

He denied that it was in connection with her probation and it was on a personal level.

Brooke currently works for the street department in Ward, where his father Art is mayor.