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Two arrested on child pornography charges

Two Applegate men — one of whom already was in custody — were arrested Monday on child pornography charges stemming from evidence seized during October raids on their residences, authorities said.

Jackson County sheriff’s deputies Monday arrested Mark Daniel Root, 56, at his home on the first block of Upper Applegate Road on three counts of first-degree encouraging child sexual abuse and eight counts of second-degree encouraging child sexual abuse, authorities said.

He was lodged Monday at the Jackson County Jail on $1 million bail, records show.

Detectives also added one count of first-degree encouraging child sexual abuse and five counts of second-degree encouraging child sexual abuse to Joquin Amadeus Cowart, 41, who has been in jail since October 24, deputies said.

That’s when police armed with search warrants raided the residences of Root and Cowart, with Cowart taken into custody at the time on felony warrants for absconding from parole, failing to register as a sex offender and other charges stemming from a domestic-violence investigation, police said.

Cowart has been in jail without parole since then, records show.

After the raid, investigation of seized evidence led to a Jackson County Grand Jury handing up indictments on both men Dec. 19, sheriff’s spokesman Mike Moran said.

The case culminated in Monday’s arrests, Moran said.

Sheriff’s detectives were assisting in the investigation by Medford police, the Oregon State Police and the Southern Oregon High Tech Crimes Task Force.

Joquin Amadeus Cowart and Mark Daniel Root