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Christian Cooper, the black birdwatcher who demanded that "Central Park Karen" leash her dog and then recorded her reporting the incident to police on May 25, will not cooperate with the prosecution’s investigation, according to The New York Times.
The defendant, Amy Cooper, is facing a misdemeanor charge from New York's district attorney's office for filing the alleged false report, claiming in a 911 call that the "African-American man" had threatened her in Central Park.
However, Manhattan district attorney Cyrus Vance’s decision to charge Ms. Cooper does not have the support of the key "victim" himself.
Mr. Cooper said punishment may be a step too far given Ms. Cooper has already lost her job, her dog, and her reputation. The misdemeanor itself carries a maximum penalty of one year behind bars.
"On the one hand, she’s already paid a steep price," Mr. Cooper told the The New York Times in a statement on Tuesday. "That’s not enough of a deterrent to others? Bringing her more misery just seems like piling on."
"So if the DA feels the need to pursue charges, he should pursue charges. But he can do that without me," Mr. Cooper resolved.
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio praised the DA’s decision to charge Ms. Cooper.
"Her racist behavior could have had dire consequences for a black man," de Blasio tweeted. "Glad she’ll face consequences of her own."
Mr. Cooper had said in his original Facebook post about the incident that he tried to offer the dog treats to de-escalate tension and convince Ms. Cooper to abide by the leash law.
"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 told her before he pulled out some dog treats, according to the post.
Ms. Cooper then scrambled to grab her dog and screamed at Mr. Cooper to stay away.
To win the case, the prosecution will have to prove that Ms. Cooper did not believe in that very moment she was being threatened and that she intended specifically to file a false complaint against him, said Daniel Alonso, former chief assistant district attorney in Manhattan, to the The New York Times.
"A threat can be, 'I’m going to kill you,' or it can be subtle," Mr. Alonso said. "She may well have believed at the time that his statement was threatening in her definition."
"Central Park Karen" might finally catch a break if others rally in her court.