NEW YORK – A white woman who was broadly criticized for calling police on a Black birdwatcher in Central Park during a contentious encounter in May – leading to a criminal charge against her – called police a second time and further lied that he “tried to assault” her, prosecutors alleged at her first court appearance here Wednesday.
Amy Cooper drew national scorn and was branded a “Karen” after she was recorded on the man’s cellphone video complaining to a 911 operator that she was being harassed by an “African American man” and that he was threatening her and her dog. She had been walking the dog without a leash in a wooded area of the park where such activity is prohibited, and the man took issue with what she was doing.
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Cooper was charged with a misdemeanor count of falsely reporting an incident in the third degree.
The woman “twice reported” that the Black man was putting her in harm’s way, “first by stating that he was threatening her and her dog, then in a second call indicating that he tried to assault her in the Ramble area of the park,” Assistant District Attorney Joan Illuzzi said at Cooper’s arraignment in Manhattan criminal court.