Man who assaulted girlfriend, Good Samaritan, sentenced to prison. 

February 5, 2022

Cooper

Man who assaulted girlfriend, Good Samaritan, sentenced to prison. 

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By Rob Alway, Editor-in-Chief and Allison Scarbrough, Editor.

LUDINGTON — A 46-year-old Indiana man who wielded a machete during an assault and then led local police on a six-hour manhunt after fleeing from the crime scene was sentenced earlier this week in 51st Circuit Court. Bret Rowe Cooper will serve 22 months to eight years in prison.

On Dec. 7, 2021, Cooper pleaded guilty to assault with a dangerous weapon and domestic violence. A charge of breaking and entering without owner’s permission was dismissed, and his fourth-offense habitual offender designation was reduced to third-offense.

Cooper

The convictions stem from a Sept. 5, 2021 incident in the Home Depot parking lot in Amber Township when Cooper assaulted a male victim with a machete and knife, said Mason County Chief Assistant Prosecutor Beth Hand. Cooper’s girlfriend was the victim in the domestic violence offense, said Hand. After Cooper assaulted his girlfriend, a citizen came to her aid. Cooper pulled a knife and a machete, threatening the Good Samaritan.

As Mason County sheriff’s deputies arrived, he ran from the parking lot. Because Cooper was armed with the machete, deputies set up a perimeter and called in the county’s emergency response team, K-9 units, fire departments and neighboring law enforcement. He was located shortly after 11 p.m. and taken into custody without incident.

His habitual offender designation increases the four-year maximum to eight years, said Judge Susan K. Sniegowski.

He was sentenced Aug. 18, 2020 to two years and four months in an Indiana prison for a conviction of criminal confinement, according to Indiana Department of Corrections records. However, he was released June 15, 2021 after serving less than a year. Cooper also has convictions in Indiana of methamphetamine possession and obstructing justice, said Judge Sniegowski.

Cooper must also pay $308 in court fees and fines. 

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