After 25 million online views of vile racist rant, woman dubbed ‘Central Park Karen,’ apologizes as she is suspended from her New York investment firm job and forced to give up pet
Video posted Monday shows Amy Cooper, 41, who is White, threatening to call cops on Christian Cooper, [no relation], in The Ramble section of New York’s central Park
57-year-old Christian says he asked the woman to put the dog on a leash in a protected wildlife area of Central Park
Footage shows Amy petting her dog then suddenly asks Christian to stop filming her
When he doesn’t stop, she says she’s going to tell cops ‘an African American man threatening my life’
She proceeds to call 911 and repeats to cops that an African American man is recording her dog
Amy becomes hysterical and yells: ‘I’m being threatened by a man in the Ramble, please send the cops immediately’
She has been put on administrative leave pending an investigation by her employer Franklin Templeton
Wide spread criticism of her treatment of the animal also forced her Amy to return the dog to the rescue shelter from where she adopted him
In the apology which came after after the massive public backlash Amy said: “I sincerely and humbly apologize to everyone, especially to that man, his family”
“When I think about the police, I’m such a blessed person. I’ve come to realize especially today that I think of [the police] as a protection agency, and unfortunately, this has caused me to realize that there are so many people in this country that don’t have that luxury,” she added
I ‘m going to call the cops ‘I’m going to tell them there’s an African American man threatening my life.’ Amy Cooper , aka ‘Central Park Karen’, reportedly has apologized after she hysterically called 911 to report ‘black man threatening her life’. The tape went viral and she was suspended from her investment firm job
A racist tinged moment of hysteria may have cost a New York woman her job. At least for now Amy Cooper is temporarily suspended from her high brow job at an investment house
Amy Cooper who is white called the New York PD and accused a Christian Cooper [no relation], black man, of threatening her and her dog after an exchange that started when the Christian asked her to leash her dog in Central Park.
Incidentally New York’s Central Park has an outsized sign warning park users to keep their dogs on a leash at all times.
She was caught on camera calling police and telling them an African American man was threatening her life after he simply asked her to put her dog on a leash in Central Park on Monday.
Amy Cooper, 41, has since apologized and has been placed on administrative leave from her job as head of insurance investment solutions at Franklin Templeton pending an investigation into the incident involving bird watcher Christian Cooper, 57.
She also returned her dog to a rescue after viewers expressed concern about her treatment of the animal.
Christian filmed the later stages of the spat on his phone which he posted online. The video went viral viewed by more than 25 million people as of Tuesday morning.
Late on Monday Amy apologized and said she understands why people may think less of her after viewing the clip: “I sincerely and humbly apologize to everyone, especially to that man, his family,” she told NBC New York.
“It was unacceptable and I humbly and fully apologize to everyone who’s seen that video, everyone that’s been offended … everyone who thinks of me in a lower light and I understand why they do.
“When I think about the police, I’m such a blessed person. I’ve come to realize especially today that I think of [the police] as a protection agency, and unfortunately, this has caused me to realize that there are so many people in this country that don’t have that luxury.”
White woman calls cops on black man after he asks her to put dog on leash The black man apparently asked her to keep her dog on a leash in the famous Ramble section of Central park in New York.”
Melody Cooper posted the message about Amy Cooper’s reaction when her brother Christian reminded her that she should respect the rules of walking a pet in that section of the park
The ‘black man’ involved in the incident Christian Cooper recorded the incident nd uploaded it online. Cooper is an avid birdwatcher who noticed the dog unleashed in a wildlife protected area in Central Park but he claims when he asked her adhere to rules, she refused
‘If the habitat is destroyed we won’t be able to go there to see the birds, to enjoy the plantings. The only way they can keep the dog from eating the treat is to put it on a leash. At some point’ – Christian Cooper
Did Amy Cooper resort to playing the race card?
Possibly believes Christian who explained to NBC News that ‘If the habitat is destroyed we won’t be able to go there to see the birds, to enjoy the plantings. The only way they can keep the dog from eating the treat is to put it on a leash. At some point, she decided I’m gonna play the race card, I guess’
With the video gone viral Amy Cooper’s employer Franklin Templeton issued a statement saying she has been placed on administrative leave
The rescue shelter from whom Amy Cooper is believed to have adopted the dog, in a statement Monday, announced that she returned the dog after social media users accused her of choking the animal
Amy Cooper reportedly, voluntarily returned Henry the Cocker Spaniel to the rescue shelter from where she adopted him after people complained about her treatment of her pet in the park confrontation video
The footage footage was first shared by Christian and his sister, Melody Cooper, a writer and director on HBO’s Two-Sentence Horror Stories.
It begins with Amy, nicknamed ‘Central Park Karen’ by social media users, stroking her rescue pet Henry then marching toward the amateur videographer, demanding: ‘Please stop, sir I’m asking you to stop.’
Christian, who does not appear on camera, claimed in a Facebook post that he had earlier alerted her to a sign that states dogs cannot be walked in the Rambles without a leash as it’s an area that protects wildlife.
AMY COOPER’S APOLOGY
Amy Cooper told NBC after 11 million viewers watched her call the police on Christian Cooper and claim ‘there’s an African American man threatening my life’:
‘I sincerely and humbly apologize to everyone, especially to that man, his family.
‘It was unacceptable and I humbly and fully apologize to everyone who’s seen that video, everyone that’s been offended…everyone who thinks of me in a lower light and I understand why they do.
‘When I think about the police, I’m such a blessed person. I’ve come to realize especially today that I think of [the police] as a protection agency, and unfortunately, this has caused me to realize that there are so many people in this country that don’t have that luxury.’
Christian who is an avid bird-watcher, claimed Amy replied that the dog runs are closed and her pet ‘needs his exercise’.
Christian explained in a Facebook post that he replied: ‘All you have to do is take him to the other side of the drive, outside the Ramble, and you can let him run off leash all you want.’
He states she replied: ‘It’s too dangerous.’
Christian told Facebook followers that he told her: ‘Look, if you’re going to do what you want, I’m going to do what I want, but you’re not going to like it.’
He then beckoned the pooch toward him and pulled out ‘dog treats I carry for just for such intransigence’.
But he stated he didn’t get a chance to toss any treats ‘before Karen scrambled to grab the dog’ and yelled: ‘DON’T YOU TOUCH MY DOG!’
‘That’s when I started video recording with my iPhone, and when her inner Karen fully emerged and took a dark turn…’ he wrote on Facebook Monday.
In the clip he responds: ‘Please don’t come close to me’ several times as the woman asks him to stop filming then tells him she’s calling the cops.
When Christian invites her to ‘please call the cops’, she responds, ‘I’m going to tell them there’s an African American man threatening my life.’
Christian responds to the dog owner: ‘Please tell them whatever you like.’
She is then heard saying: ‘I’m in the Ramble and an African American man with a bicycle helmet, he is recording me and threatening my dog.’
‘DON’T YOU TOUCH MY DOG!’ Video posted by an HBO director Melody Cooper on Monday shows a white woman threatening to call cops and tell them an African American man is threatening her life. The woman is seen petting her pooch then suddenly asks the man to stop filming but when he doesn’t stop she marches directly up to him with a stern message
‘I’m going to tell them there’s an African American man threatening my life,’ Amy says as she gets closer to Christian who she apparently fears. His response is to tell her to say whatever she wants
At this point Cooper is heard repeating in her 911 call that an African American man is recording her dog but after a brief pause she becomes hysterical and claims he’s ‘threatening her and her dog’
She pauses for a moment then continues: ‘I’m am in Central Park, there is an African American man. He is recording me and threatening my dog.’
There is another pause as the woman listens to the other end of the phone line then she suddenly sounds hysterical.
‘I’m sorry I can’t hear,’ she cries. ‘I’m being threatened by a man in the Ramble, please send the cops immediately…’
After a brief pause she responds to the operator: ‘I’m in Central Park in the Ramble, I don’t know.’
At that point the woman clips the dog onto a leash and Christian responds: ‘Thank you’ and stops filming.
His sister Melody Cooper responded to a Twitter user that as soon as the woman leashed the dog, he said thank you, stopped filming and ‘went about his business’. ‘This kind of entitlement dog walking happens weekly in the Ramble,’ she added.
Christian later explained to NBC New York News: ‘If the habitat is destroyed we won’t be able to go there to see the birds, to enjoy the plantings.
‘The only way they can keep the dog from eating the treat is to put it on a leash. At some point, she decided I’m gonna play the race card, I guess.’
Christian says he continued to film the woman because he wasn’t going to be intimated, adding: ‘We live in an age of Ahmaud Arbery where black men are gunned down because of assumptions people make about black men, black people, and I’m just not going to participate in that.’
Christian is heard saying ‘Thank you’ and stops filming as soon as Amy put her dog on the leash she held in one hand all along
Posting details of his encounter with Amy on Facebook, Christian recalls that he offered the dog treats, then things ‘took a dark turn’. He caught the mood swing on his camera
Visible warning: Inside the Ramble Central Park, New York City, there large sign warns park users that dogs must be on a leash at all times
Police said they responded to the call but both Christian and Amy were no longer there.
They said a call came in for a dispute, inside of Central Park’s Ramble, around 8am but no report was filed and no arrests were made. Sergeant Mary Frances O’Donnell said no one has come forward to police since.
Melody explained that her sibling ‘started filming her because she refused to put her dog on a leash and he sensed she was going to go full on Karen. And she did.’
A Manhattan DA candidate shared her opinion on the matter Monday after the video was shared online, and vowed to make sure Christian would not become yet another victim of the criminal justice system that has been criticized for disfavoring poor black Americans.
‘This is serious. Happened today in Manhattan. As a public defender for over a decade, I have tried cases where the Manhattan DA uses a “hysterical 911 call” as categorical evidence of guilt. Usually there’s no video like this to refute it,’ Eliza Orlins explained.
‘What happens: White lady calls the cops on Black man. Cops believe her. He gets arrested and then arraigned. Outrageous bail gets set. His family cannot afford to buy his freedom. He gets sent to Rikers Island, where he sits for any number of days, months, or years.
‘Eventually the case resolves in some way–gets dismissed or he takes a plea to the charge or a lesser offense to get out because he’s threatened with doing serious time. Meanwhile, he’s potentially lost his job, his home, his children. Right now, it is even worse.
‘People are sitting on Rikers Island on the basis of nothing more than an accusation (like in this video!) with the added risk of contracting COVID-19. So, we can call out these “Karens,” but also we need a Manhattan DA who is committed to real reform. I will be that DA.’
The tweets from Eliza Orlins evoked memories of Emmett Till, a 14-year-old boy killed in 1955 after Carolyn Donham accused him of assaulting her.
It also brought back memories of the Central Park Five. When a group of Black teenagers dubbed the Central Park Five were wrongly accused of raping a white woman in the New York City park. They were convicted in 1990 and each served sentences from five years to 15 years before they were exonerated.
Social media users called for the woman in Monday’s video to be fired. In response, she was placed on administrative leave on Monday night by her employer Franklin Templeton: ‘We take these matters very seriously and we do not condone racism of any kind,’ Franklin Templeton stated on Monday.
‘While we are in the process of investigating the situation, the employee involved has been put on administrative leave,’ the statement read.
In addition to criticism of racism, Amy also received criticism of animal cruelty because she appeared to be choking her dog for nearly a minute after she grabbed it by the collar.
Throughout the video the dog is seen flailing around seemingly eager to be free of Amy Cooper’s restraint as she grabs the harness by the neck without attaching a leash. It led to calls from social media for the dog to be removed from her care due to concerns she was choking it.
Viewers of the video contacted Abandoned Angels Cocker Spaniel Rescue which later said the dog had been returned.
‘Thank you to the concerned public for reaching out to us about a video involving a dog that was adopted from our rescue a few years ago,’ they wrote on Facebook. ‘As of this evening, the owner has voluntarily surrendered the dog in question to our rescue while this matter is being addressed.
‘Our mission remains the health and safety of our rescued dogs. The dog is now in our rescue’s care and he is safe and in good health. We will not be responding to any further inquiries about the situation, either.’
Mayor Bill de Blasio described the video footage as “racism, plain and simple.”
While the Central Park Civic Association, which represents area businesses and residents, called for Amy Cooper to be banned from the park for life in a statement Tuesday.