February 19 Update: DeVantell Cooper, the 27-year-old Daytona Beach and Bunnell man wanted in an alleged shooting at a driver on U.S. 1 last month, was arrested in Daytona Beach today, the Flagler County Sheriff’s Office announced.
The Flagler County Sheriff’s Office’s Problem Area Crime Enforcement Unit learned that Cooper may be staying at an apartment complex in Daytona Beach. The Florida Department of Law Enforcement, the Daytona Beach Police Department and their SWAT team made contact with Cooper at the apartment complex and took him into custody today, a sheriff’s release states.
Cooper has been booked at the Flagler County jail almost a dozen times in the past 10 years, the last time last December, on a drug charge, when he was court-ordered released. He was to be arraigned on that charge, a third-degree felony, on Feb. 24. His warrant calls for a no-bond incarceration this time.
The previous story is below.
Sheriff Seeking DeVantell Cooper, ‘Armed and Dangerous’ Felon Wanted in Shooting at U.S. 1 Roundabout
January 18–Early the evening of Jan. 12, an individual was driving north on U.S. 1, noticing a black Nissan Altima following closely behind, then tailgating and refusing to pass by despite the driver slowing intentionally. When the driver reached the roundabout, the individual noticed the rear window on the suspect’s vehicle go down and saw a brown-skinned man in a gray hoodie, with short, faded style hair hold his arm out with a gun and fire two shots at the individual’s vehicle. The suspect vehicle then continued on the roundabout and went south toward Ormond Beach.
The individual suffered a panic attack, went to a local hospital, and reported the incident to the Flagler County Sheriff’s Office. Bullet holes were located inside the trunk and an indentation was located on the rear bumper of the victim’s vehicle, presumably from the bullet exiting. On Jan. 16, Circuit Judge Terence Perkins signed a warrant for the arrest of DeVantell Rashaun Cooper, a 27-year-old resident of Flagler and Volusia counties whose last known address was 1105 Berkshire Road in Holly Hill.
Cooper had two stints in state prison, the last one ending two years ago after a second conviction on drug charges and on charges of fleeing police, a reflection of his very slippery history when it comes to eluding law enforcement. He has more than a dozen aliases, changing names with the frequency of changing locations and cars–he has a “history of using rental vehicles during his prior violations of the law,” according to his arrest affidavit–and has a dozen arrests in Flagler alone on drug charges, illegal weapons possession, contempt, resisting and burglary, though until now and aside from the fleeing charges, he had not faced charges for a violent offense.
Detectives concluded that Cooper is the alleged shooter at the roundabout based on a series of verifications of the victim’s account, through observations about the alleged assailant’s car, analyses of rentals of Nissans matching the vehicle description, and especially data from the sheriff’s license plate readers (provided by Vigilant Solutions), which produced license plate numbers and a timeline. Further investigation suggested that Cooper was staying at Bermuda Estates Apartments in Ormond Beach.
During the investigation, a detective “located the black Nissan Altima bearing Florida tag KQT X59, parked within a general parking area of the complex,” the arrest affidavit states. The detective “then captured several photographs of the vehicle,” noticing that the window tint on the rear driver’s was peeling up, just as the victim had described it. The detective spoke with the rental agency, which revealed that the car had been rented to an individual currently on probation in Volusia, and wearing an ankle monitor. The company also provided GPS data from the car, which established the path of the vehicle at the time when the victim described the shooting: it matched the locations given.
Cooper faces charges of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and shooting into an occupied vehicle, both felonies. He is still at large. “De’Vantell Cooper should be considered armed and dangerous and should not be approached,” the sheriff’s office said in a release issued Friday.
“This is a dangerous individual who needs to be taken off the streets as soon as possible,” Sheriff Rick Staly said. “Anyone with information on his whereabouts is encouraged to call the Sheriff’s Office or CrimeStoppers as soon as possible.”
If anyone has any information on his whereabouts, please call the Flagler County Sheriff’s Office at 386-313-4911. To remain anonymous, call Crimestoppers at 1-888-277-TIPS (8477). Information leading to the capture of this violent felon could lead to a cash reward up to $5,000.00.