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NC man surrenders on child sex charges, claims innocence

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Nathan Lynn Cooley, 28, of Spring Lake

FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. — A man wanted for an alleged sex assault on an 11-year-old girl in Spring Lake surrendered to authorities in Cumberland County Saturday, according to WTVD-TV.

Nathan Cooley, 28, was with his attorney when he turned himself in at the Magistrate’s Office at the Cumberland County Detention Center.

Authorities say sometime between 3:30 p.m. and 5 p.m. Tuesday, Cooley approached the child in the 500 block of Odell Road in Spring Lake.

Officials said Cooley posed as a police officer, asking the girl to help him find a dog. He allegedly lured her into the woods where he sexually assaulted her. When the girl began to cry and ask for her mother, police said Cooley dropped her off at the Spring Lake Public Library.

Cooley has contacted media outlets claiming to be innocent. He said surveillance from several other places in the area will prove he couldn’t have committed the crime.

Spring Lake police say he did not make any statements to detectives after he surrendered Saturday.

Cooley, a registered sex offender, has a record of those offenses dating back to 2004 and 2010. He’s now in the Cumberland County jail charged with first-degree kidnapping and indecent liberties with a child.