Drunk driver Michael Gerard Cooper gets new look, new picture
Family of victim wants Nova Scotia liquor stores to share photo
Halifax Regional Police have issued a new photo of Michael Gerard Cooper who has just been released from prison after serving a seven-year sentence for driving drunk in a crash that killed a young couple in 2004.
Cooper was released from Dorchester Penitentiary on Tuesday after serving his full sentence for the deaths of Angela Smits, 19, and her 20-year-old boyfriend, Michael MacLean.
Cooper told the Parole Board of Canada he would not stop drinking and driving, prompting police in Halifax to warn the public he's a high risk to reoffend.
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The 55-year-old man is barred from consuming, purchasing and possessing alcohol and entering any place alcohol is sold or consumed. He is under a curfew and is barred from driving for life.
As part of his court-imposed conditions, Cooper must also have his photo taken by a police officer if he ever alters his appearance. That led Halifax Regional Police to issue a new photo of him on Wednesday with short hair and no beard.
Cooper's case attracted attention after the parents of Angela Smits, who was killed in a collision with Cooper's vehicle, asked Nova Scotia authorities to provide Cooper's name and photo to liquor stores, bars and other licensed establishments.
At Durty Nelly's pub in downtown Halifax, there's now a photo of Cooper tacked to a bulletin board.
"The guy has killed people. He's been irresponsible with his decisions and he's probably going to do it again, so [we're] not going to let him in here," said Michael Carey, the manager of the pub.
He said anyone resembling Cooper, bearded or not, will be asked to show identification.
"I really don't like to bother our guests with checking ID when you're in your fifties but in this situation I have no problem asking for ID to prove that they aren't Mr. Cooper," said Carey.
Halifax Regional Police are asking anyone who sees Cooper drinking, driving or breaking his nightly curfew to call them.
The Nova Scotia Liquor Corp., which owns the province's liquor stores, said it was instructing its employees that they should call 911 if Cooper is spotted in their outlets.
With files from The Canadian Press