Man who allegedly stole Middletown cruiser tells judge he would live with girlfriend who called police if released on bond

Bond was set at $250,000 for a Middletown man who has been indicted on multiple felony charges in connection with allegedly stealing a police cruiser and then purposely crashing into another cruiser.

Jason Cooper was indicted earlier this month by a Butler County grand jury for two counts of felonious assault, aggravated robbery, grand theft, two counts of resisting arrest, two counts of vandalism and possessing criminal tools.

MORE: 911 caller before Middletown police cruiser theft: My boyfriend is ‘extremely drunk’

Cooper’s arm remained bandaged when he was arraigned by county Common Pleas Judge Charles Pater. He asked for a court-appointed attorney and entered a not guilty plea to all charges. When he was brought into the courtroom, Cooper smiled, waved at three women seated in the front row. The women declined comment after the hearing.

The 49-year-old man told Pater if he got out on bond he could go back to the Bavarian Street residence to live with his girlfriend. That is the same location were the alleged incident happened last month.

Assistant Butler County Prosecutor Kraig Chadrick urged the judge to set a substantial bond, noting he had concerns about Cooper returning to live with his girlfriend who called police to the residence and is a witness in the case.

Chadrick said the allegation is that this was a planned event.

MORE: Police: Suspect scanning police scanner prior to stealing Middletown cruiser, ramming another

“He is not only a flight risk, but a risk to the community, police officers and society if he is out on bond,” Chadrick said.

Cooper’s bond was previously set at $1 million in Middletown Municipal Court shortly after his arrest and before the indictment was handed down.

On Feb. 28, Cooper’s girlfriend called 911 Middletown dispatchers claiming he was “extremely drunk,” slamming doors, yelling and cursing. When officer Patrick Glassburn arrived to the 100 block of Bavarian Street, the 911 caller stood on the second-floor balcony and told the officer her boyfriend was hiding in the bushes outside the apartment.

As Cooper hid, he listened to the police scanner on his cell phone, and Chief Rodney Muterspaw believes Cooper was going to “ambush” the officer. Cooper allegedly came out from behind the bushes and displayed a knife to the officer. Glassburn told Cooper to drop what he was carrying, and when he refused, he was shocked by Glassburn’s Taser, which was ineffective.

Cooper then got into the cruiser and crashed into a cruiser driven by Officer Ryan Morgan, who was responding to the disturbance call.

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