By Raven Jordan
A fight between two men outside the streets of The Free Man Lounge led to one of the bar’s employees getting shot, but now he’s back home recovering from his injuries.
Cameron Cooper, a performer known as Chief Rebel who sometimes performs with RC & the Gritz, was shot by a stray bullet and critically injured while working security at the lounge Sunday night, Feb. 12.
After the shooting, Cooper was rushed to the hospital and placed into the Intensive Care Unit for his injuries. As of this week, however, Cooper is back home and sharing videos of his recovery progress on social media.
“I just wanted to tap in, let everybody know I’m home,“ Cooper said.
Though the Free Man had no involvement in the fight that happened outside, they still had to close. The Free Man Owner John Jay Myers shared that the Texas Alcohol and Beverage Commision (TABC) had closed the venue for several days as part of an investigation into the incident.
As a result, they couldn’t serve alcohol. The bar returned to full service on Fat Tuesday, which was Feb. 21.
“The TABC has shut down The Free Man because of the altercation that happened outside of the club last night that was completely beyond our control. It spilled over into us in a tragic way, but it didn’t have anything to do with us,“ Myers wrote in a Facebook post.
A few days after the shooting happened, the Deep Ellum community gathered for a fundraiser concert to support Cooper’s treatment and bring healing to family and friends on Feb. 16.
In a phone call, General Manager Gino Iglehart says it’s something that will have long-lasting effects and that Cooper has a long road ahead, but a community to back him up.
“We were able to come together as an arts community, as a business, as friends, colleagues, and really let Chief know how much we love him and how much we’re supporting him,” Iglehart said. “So although you hate the reasoning behind it, you still love that the occasion was able to take place and somebody was able to receive love while they’re still here. It could have been a funeral, a wake, but it wasn’t.”
Tony Cooper, Cooper’s dad, also thanked supporters for their prayers and contributions on the family’s behalf in a Facebook post.
“He, and we would like to thank everyone again and again for your prayers , and your well wishes. Your words and deeds have been monumental in helping the family get through this difficult stretch.”
Police are still investigating the shooting and looking for the suspect who shot Cooper. Anyone with information about the shooting is asked to contact Detective Darryl Barclay at 214-671-4736 or email@example.com.