Harrison man wants his child home

July 31, 2015

Mike WilcoxIt’s a great time of year for many kids. Summer often means camping and festivals. This weekend is Marion Days, with the lots of activities for kids of all ages. And it is the kickoff of the Clare County Fair, where a large midway, a bevy of food choices, and animal displays beckon kids to come join the fun.

For one child that’s not possible. Justin Cooper, 10, is traveling the country with his mother, Jennifer and dangerous felon Dillon Cooper, and his real father, Dillon Martin is doing everything he can to get his son back to Harrison safe and sound.

I wouldn’t normally write about a situation where a child has left town with his birth mother, even though she and Dillon Martin have joint custody of Justin. It happens all the time. But the way they left Harrison, the violent nature of Dillon Cooper, and the dogged persistence of Dillon Martin, makes this situation unique and probably dangerous for Justin.

According to Martin, Cooper and his wife, left Harrison after stealing everything from a friend’s home they were cleaning and then selling it at a garage sale. Martin says they used the money from the sale to fund their life on the run. This occurred after Cooper pulled a gun on his wife’s father, who had confronted him about a violent incident in which he had pointed a gun at Jennifer’s head.

Cooper was out on bond. He had been arrested for being a convicted felon in possession of a firearm and intimidating a witness. That was one count. Secondly he had posted bond for a felonious assault with intent to do great bodily harm count. These aren’t his first issues with law. He has been in and out of jail in Harrison for a variety of crimes.

On the day police came to arrest the Coopers for stealing the goods from the neighbor’s home, the Coopers had already fled. They found his GPS monitoring device on the floor. Cooper had cut it off and left it.

Martin has been to the police. They hesitate to do anything because his son is with his mother. They referred him to Friend of the Court, where he is in the process of attempting to get sole custody. He inquired about an Amber Alert, but that is unlikely to happen for the same reason- the son is with his biological mother.

So Martin has turned to social media and has been posting updates on Facebook every hour or so in an effort to find his son. He fears Cooper will turn his gun on his son if police happen to confront him. His concerns have went viral with over 200,000 people sharing his post and another 22,000 commenting. The updates have attracted people from nearly every state and even as far away as Australia, to offer help and keep a wary eye out for the late model tan or silver Suburban the Coopers are driving.

One Facebook reader claimed she saw the Coopers and their Suburban in Indiana. Another creditable witness was sure it was them at a Walmart in Bradenton, Florida. Closer to home, another reader said she saw the Coopers, with three children in the Suburban at a lake in Sumpter (Belleville) Michigan.

Unfortunately, the Coopers are still on the loose. The Sumpter lead was very descriptive. Dillon Cooper had his shirt off and they noticed a large tattoo across his chest that said “Fat Boy.” Cooper is also bald, and heavyset.

Martin is praying to get his son returned safely.
If you know the whereabouts of Dillon Cooper call Martin at 989-239-6905. He will forever be grateful.

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