NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Amy Cooper, the white woman who was seen on camera calling 911 and falsely accusing Chris Cooper, an African-American man, of threatening her in Central Park, is now facing charges.
The video, recorded in May, shows Amy Cooper frantically calling police, while alleging Chris Cooper — no relation — was threatening her.
Chris Cooper is an avid bird watcher and was in the Central Park Ramble, where dogs must be leashed. He was simply asking Amy to follow the rules and leash her dog.
Oh, when Karens take a walk with their dogs off leash in the famous Bramble in NY’s Central Park, where it is clearly posted on signs that dogs MUST be leashed at all times, and someone like my brother (an avid birder) politely asks her to put her dog on the leash. pic.twitter.com/3YnzuATsDm
— Melody Cooper (@melodyMcooper) May 25, 2020
He told CBS2 he was was recording the encounter until she did so.
Her reaction sparked public outrage and, as a result, Amy Cooper lost her job and temporarily surrendered her dog. Up until Monday, she hadn’t faced charges.
After the incident, CBS2 spoke to the man who recorded the video, Chris Cooper.
“I wasn’t going to participate in my own dehumanization and feed that so I just kept recording,” he said. “It’s not just about her. She tapped into something that’s pervasive in our society that we all really need to address.”
The Manhattan district attorney announced the charges Monday, also encouraging anyone who has been the target of false reporting to reach out, saying, “We are strongly committed to holding perpetrators of this conduct accountable.”
Added Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams: “We can arrest someone for pulling a fire alarm, we can surely arrest someone for attempting to burn down a life of an innocent person.”
Amy Cooper is due in court on Oct. 4. She could face up to a year in jail for the misdemeanor charge.
“Once all the facts are known, Amy Cooper will be found not guilty of the single, misdemeanor charge filed in this case. The rush to judgment by some in the public, in this cancel culture epidemic, will be proven as wrong as cancel culture itself. She lost her job, her home, and her public life. Now some demand her freedom? How many lives are we going to destroy over misunderstood 60-second videos on social media?” said Robert Barnes, her attorney.
The New York City Human Rights Commission is also investigating the incident.