NASHVILLE, Tenn. - A Minnesota father has traveled to Tennessee, hoping he can be reunited with his 6-year-old daughter.
Brian Cooney of Perham said he has not seen his daughter, Claire, in more than a month, WKRN reported. Cooney and Claire’s mother, Miranda Cooney, have shared custody of the child.
Miranda Cooney and Jonathan Dennis Bromen, 27, a convicted felon, are traveling with Claire, Brian Cooney said.
A Minnesota court filed an order of protection for Claire, so Brian Cooney has temporary custody. If Miranda Cooney doesn’t show up for court in Minnesota by March 14, an Amber Alert could be issued, Cooney’s lawyer said.
On March 2, a store owner in Centerville, Tennessee, called police when she said two adults came in with a little girl, WKRN reported.
“They looked suspicious,” said Becky Bryant of Becky’s Thrift Store in Centerville. “They bought rope, tarps and hacksaws and said they were ‘going off the grid.’”
Bryant said the girl’s hair had been dyed.
“The bottom of her hair was black but you could see the blonde in her hair at the top,” Bryant told WKRN. “I asked if that was her natural hair color and the mother said, ‘No, she wanted this done for her birthday.'”
Bryant said the girl’s mother was wearing a wig.
Bryant kept them distracted while her nephew took a picture of their license plate.
She called Centerville police and found out the car, a 2004 Trailblazer, belonged to Bromen, WKRN reported.
“It’s been a nightmare not knowing where she is,” Brian Cooney told WKRN. “Not knowing if she’s in the woods or wilderness in Tennessee.”
Cooney also hired private investigator Renee Brewer, who believes the couple is heading toward Florida.
“It’s hard to live off the grid without any support whatsoever,” Brewer told WKRN. “They’re going to run into trouble and they’re gonna come out.”
Brian Cooney and his family have started a GoFundMe account to raise money for a reward for anyone who finds Claire, and to cover expenses for hiring a private investigator and travel to Tennessee. The family also has a website, www.findclairecooney.com.
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