Thursday, May 31, 2007


Springboig, Glasgow: Liz Cooper

When Liz Cooper’s autistic 13-year-old son Martin raced through their front door covered in blood, Liz, who is confined to a wheelchair, frantically dialled 999.
Liz, 38, explains: ‘Martin was playing with his basketball when three kids approached him. They took his ball and when he asked for it back, they hit him over the head with a brick.
They grabbed him by the hair and smashed his face against a fence, fracturing his cheekbone and breaking his nose. They kicked him, jumped on his head and back, then they whipped him with a rubber hose.
‘Thankfully a man passed by walking his dog, so Martin had the chance to run away. The boys chased him all the way home.
‘He was so badly beaten he was taken to hospital and examined by a facial specialist.
‘His attackers, who were aged 14 and under, were arrested and charged, but the case went no further than a children’s panel.
‘Because of his condition, Martin is very quiet,' says Liz. 'He now refuses to go outside without me. He has constant nightmares about the boys coming for him and he wakes up in a cold sweat.
‘I’m joining Mums’ Army because I want to encourage other families who have been victimised by antisocial behaviour to speak out. We have to work together to put a stop to it.’
Liz Cooper,
Springboig, Glasgow

Martin Cooper after the attack

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