Tuesday, June 5, 2012
Man sets fire to McKinney dollar store
Damon Cooper claims that the Dollar Tree company is threatening and stalking him.
Police on Monday arrested a man who distributed thousands of flyers stating his case before setting fire to a dollar store in McKinney.
Around 1:30 p.m., McKinney police received a call from the Dollar Tree store on the southeast corner of Eldorado Parkway and Central Expressway. The caller said a man, soon determined to be Damon Cooper, had entered the store and begun pouring lighter fluid all over, said McKinney Deputy Chief Joe Ellenburg.
A nearby police officer responded to the call, and immediately saw flames in the back of the store. When additional officers arrived on scene, Cooper began throwing canned goods at the windows.
Police gave Cooper verbal commands to exit the store, and when he did, they arrested him.
McKinney fire personnel arrived shortly thereafter to extinguish the fire before it spread to adjacent businesses.
Surrounding businesses between Albertsons, north of the Dollar Tree, and Kohls, south of the store, were evacuated as a safety precaution, said Stacie Durham, McKinney Fire Department public information officer. No one was injured or burned during the incident.
Police took Cooper to the public safety building to investigate him for arson. Scattered all over the Dollar Tree parking lot when police arrived were white flyers with black print that read the following:
"My name is Damon Cooper ... I am being followed, threatened, watched, set-up, stalked, attempted to be committed, imprisoned and much more from state to state by Dollar Trees Inc., N.Y.P.D., Texas P.D., N.C.P.D., Az P.d., Georgia County Superior Court, Wal-Mart, maybe more ... They even tried to kill me ..."
The flyers also allude to Cooper's Facebook page, which shows pictures of more written documents with similar statements, and of license plates on cars that are claimed to belong to "a cop or Dollar Tree Stores security or Wal-Mart security."
On the flyers, Cooper said the main photograph on his Facebook page is of him and his daughter. Chief Ellenburg said Cooper is believed to be in his 20s.
The case is still under investigation, thus Cooper has not yet been officially charged.
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