July 28, 2008
Contact: Sgt. Greg Sondreal
Madison, WI. July 28th, 2008 – At approximately 10:46pm, an individual reported to the Deforest Police Department, a person had just pointed a handgun at her. She provided a description of the suspect, the suspect’s vehicle and where the gun could be located in the vehicle. A Dane County Sheriff’s Office deputy located the vehicle at Highway 19 and Interstate 90. The deputy followed the vehicle for a short time before attempting a traffic stop on the off-ramp of Interstate 90 to westbound Hwy 30. The suspect vehicle did not stop for the emergency lights and siren. At approximately 10:56pm, a pursuit started and continued to Commercial Avenue in the City of Madison. The Wisconsin State Patrol assisted in the short pursuit.
In the 3000 block of Commercial Avenue, the vehicle slid sideways and crashed into a tree. The vehicle crashed at approximately 10:58pm. The driver, Eric L. Cooper, 27, of Chicago, was arrested after a brief struggle. A loaded handgun was recovered.
Cooper had his 7-year-old son with him in the vehicle. Cooper’s son was wearing a seatbelt in the vehicle. The airbags deployed in the vehicle. Both Cooper and his son received non life-threatening injuries. Cooper is being charged with Eluding, Recklessly Endangering Safety with a Motor Vehicle and Carrying a Concealed Weapon. He is also being charged with Disorderly Conduct while armed for the initial incident.
The pursuit covered 2.8 miles and no other vehicles were involved in the traffic crash.