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Amy Cooper faces charges after calling police on Black bird watcher in Central Park

White woman calls police on a Black man for ‘threatening’ her after he asked that she leash her dog
Video shows Amy Cooper calling police on Black bird watcher in Central Park in May.

A white woman who called the police on a Black bird watcher in Central Park in May is facing misdemeanour charges.

A press release from the Manhattan district attorney’s office released Monday says the office “initiated a prosecution of Amy Cooper for falsely reporting an incident in the third degree.”

“Our office will provide the public with additional information as the case proceeds. At this time I would like to encourage anyone who has been the target of false reporting to contact our Office,” the statement reads. “We are strongly committed to holding perpetrators of this conduct accountable.”

She’s been ordered to appear in court on Oct. 14, per the Associated Press.

Read more: Woman called police on a Black man in Central Park, then she was fired

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On May 25, Amy Cooper called 911 on Christian Cooper, a bird watcher who frequents the park, after he asked her to put her dog on a leash.

In the video taken by Christian Cooper and shared to Facebook, a woman comes toward the camera while telling the person behind the camera to stop filming.

After the person asks her not to come closer, the woman pulls out her phone and says she’s going to tell police that “there is an African-American man threatening my life.” The man tells her to “tell them whatever you like.”

The woman then moves away from the person filming to make the call, dragging the dog by the collar.

The woman can be heard repeatedly claiming the man is “threatening me and my dog.” Despite no signs that the man filming her, or anyone else, is advancing towards her, the woman becomes louder as she talks into the phone.

“Please send the cops immediately!” she yells as she puts a leash on her dog, which prompts the person recording the video to thank her.

Amy Cooper was later terminated by her employer.

After the backlash, she released an apology through a public relations service, saying she “reacted emotionally and made false assumptions about his intentions,” AP reports.

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Read more: Outrage erupts over ‘Karen’ who called cops on Black birdwatcher in Central Park

“He had every right to request that I leash my dog in an area where it was required,” she said in the written statement.

“I am well aware of the pain that misassumptions and insensitive statements about race cause and would never have imagined that I would be involved in the type of incident that occurred with Chris.”

— With files from the Associated Press.

meaghan.wray@globalnews.ca

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