Convicted drunk driver Michael Gerard Cooper arrested again
Cooper was out past his curfew, say police
Michael Gerard Cooper, a convicted drunk driver who served seven years in prison for killing two young people, is back behind bars after breaching a peace bond for the second time since January.
The 55-year-old Cape Breton man served his full sentence for impaired driving cause the deaths of a young couple almost 10 years ago. A curfew and a ban to stay out of any place where alcohol is sold were attached to his release.
His curfew is between 9 p.m. and 6 a.m. Halifax Regional Police arrested Cooper walking near his apartment at 9:15 p.m. on Monday. According to The Canadian Press, he was sentenced 30 days in jail on Tuesday.
Just last week, Cooper pleaded guilty to breaching an order that forbids him from entering liquor stores. An assessment from the East Coast Forensic Hospital in Dartmouth said he was allowed to return to the community.
According to a mental health assessment report, Cooper sustained serious brain injury in the car crash in 2004 that killed Angela Smits and her boyfriend Michael MacLean — a crash Cooper caused while driving drunk.
The report said Cooper was fit to stand trial and not exempt from criminal responsibility due to mental illness, but said he suffered significant brain damage, making it difficult for him to adapt to independent community living.
His story made headlines after the parents of a teenager killed in a collision with Cooper's vehicle in 2004 asked Nova Scotia authorities to provide his name and photo to liquor stores, bars and other licensed establishments.
Jerry Smits, the father of the young woman, says he had to do something to warn others because the Parole Board of Canada said Cooper told them he would probably drink and drive after completing his sentence.
With files from the Canadian Press