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4 arrested in sex offender sweep
Charged with violating probation
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Forsyth County News

Four registered sex offenders were arrested for probation violations during a sweep Monday by Forsyth County Sheriff’s deputies and state probation officers.

The team visited 10 locations as part of an ongoing effort to monitor registered sex offenders.

The four arrested for probation violations included: Andrew Vincent Cole, 25; Eric James Hamilton, 45; Chad Lee Meade, 46; and Robert Michael Tidwell, 59.

Also arrested was Michela Marie Rice, 21, who was charged with possession of a controlled substance.

At the time of the check, Rice was in the home of Cole, at 5845 Karr Road, who violated his probation by letting someone else with drugs into his residence, said Doug Rainwater with the sheriff’s office.

Cole pleaded guilty in November 2007 to aggravated sexual battery, according to Forsyth County court records.

Hamilton was arrested for probation violations of having adult pornography and ammunition in his home, at 4298 Hurt Bridge Road.

Hamilton pleaded guilty to statutory rape in August 2009, according to court records.

Meade violated probation by having drug paraphernalia in his house, at 4157 Post Road.

He pleaded guilty in January 2009 to two counts of child molestation.

Tidwell, of 4260 Dawsonville Highway, violated probation by reportedly having video on his cell phone of locations he is not allowed to be near.

He pleaded guilty to 17 counts of sexual exploitation of a child in December 2008, according to court records. The sex offender registry states Hamilton was convicted of computer pornography.

Rainwater said the four men arrested for probation violations will have to face a judge, who can consider revoking their probation.

The registered sex offender compliance checks are intended to be a monthly effort, Rainwater said.

The state’s sex offender registry includes 117 people who live in Forsyth County.