Amy Cooper, a white woman in New York City who notoriously called the police on a black man back in May, has been charged with filing a false police report, the Manhattan District Attorney announced on Monday. Filing a false report, the charge she faces, is a misdemeanor punishable by up to a year in jail.
Cooper made headlines last May due to an encounter with Christian Cooper, a birdwatcher, in Central Park. (They are of no relation.) Mr. Cooper asked Ms. Cooper to leash her dog in the Ramble, an area where it is not permitted for dogs to roam unleashed. Ms. Cooper refused, prompting Mr. Cooper to try to lure the dog with dog treats. This eventually resulted in her calling 911 and report Mr. Cooper for “threatening” her. “I’m in the Ramble, there is a man, African-American, he has a bicycle helmet and he is recording me and threatening me and my dog,” she is seen saying on the phone to a 911 operator in footage captured by Mr. Cooper.
The footage of Ms. Cooper calling the police on Mr. Cooper went viral, prompting a nationwide conversation about white people exerting their privilege and filing false charges against black people. Ms. Cooper was fired from her job at an investment firm shortly after.
In a statement, she issued an apology to Mr. Cooper. “I reacted emotionally and made false assumptions about his intentions when, in fact, I was the one who was acting inappropriately by not having my dog on a leash,” she said, “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.”
Mr. Cooper accepted the apology, but urged Ms. Cooper to examine her own privilege, saying on The View, “It was just a conflict between a birder and a dog walker, and then she took it to a very dark place. I think she’s gotta sort of examine why and how that happened.”