A local law enforcement agency now has international flair.
The Grimes County Sheriff's Office may look like your average department with jail cells, inmates, and even tight security. However, this department has something...rather, someone truly unique: Deputy Dave Cook.
"I call him the Queen's constable, which is what he's called around here," Master Peace Officer Chris Siracuse with the Grimes County Sheriff's Office said.
"The first day we met I was like, 'well, you're definitely not from Texas now are you,'" Detective Mike Fiaschetti said.
Cook says, "Most guesses are Australian. No, not exactly."
Cook is known as the Grimes County bobby. Hailing from Oxford, Deputy Cook brings more than a decade's worth of experience serving in Her Majesty's Royal Navy alongside England's heir to the throne, Prince Charles.
"It was a pain in the royal backside to tell the truth. There was so much security and extra activity involved with having somebody like that on board the ship," Cook said. "Inevitably, you get tired of it."
Law enforcement has always been one of Cook's passions. In fact, he almost made a career out of it in England, but later decided that the bobby's hat wasn't a perfect fit for him.
Several trips to America, a big move to the states and a wife later, Cook traded in his chance to wear one hat for another.
"Sheriff Sowell sponsored me for the police academy," Cook said. "It was up to me. He couldn't get me though that. I had to do that myself. He gave me the opportunity and I took it."
Now a bona fide sheriff's deputy in a town where boots, cowboy hats and a southern twang is the norm, Deputy Cook is constantly turning heads.
"I'm still getting the weird looks. It sets some people back," Cook said. "Quite often, it defuses a situation because they're trying to figure out who are you and why are you here, and 'boy, don't you talk funny.'"
Cook says he doesn't mind the questions or even the teasing from his peers, who often joke about the way he pronounces the word "skittles."
Cook is enjoying the life he has made in the Lone Star State and says Texas is the place he now calls home.
"Living in Texas is like wearing your favorite pair of carpet slippers," Cook said. "I enjoy it."
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