Christian Cooper said he won't cooperate in prosecuting Amy Cooper, the white woman who was filmed calling the cops after falsely accusing him of threatening her life in a New York City park.
"I must err on the side of compassion and choose not to be involved in this prosecution," Christian Cooper, a Black writer, editor, and bird-watcher who is not related to Amy Cooper, wrote in a Washington Post op-ed published Tuesday.
"Considering that Amy Cooper has already lost her job and her reputation, it’s hard to see what is to be gained by a criminal charge, aside from the upholding of principle," he wrote.
The Manhattan district attorney recently charged Amy Cooper, who infamously became known as "Central Park Karen" after the incident.
Christian Cooper, who had earlier told the New York Times of his decision not to cooperate as a witness, wrote that he was "ambivalent about the prosecution and [has] chosen not to aid the investigation."
He added that he would testify in the case if he were subpoenaed by the prosecutor.
"I’ve said all along that I think it’s a mistake to focus on this one individual," he wrote. "The important thing the incident highlights is the long-standing, deep-seated racial bias against us black and brown folk that permeates the United States — bias that can bring horrific consequences, as with the killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis later the same day I encountered Amy Cooper, or just small daily cuts."
Christian Cooper had filmed his viral encounter with Amy Cooper while he was bird-watching in an area of Central Park known as the Ramble on May 25.
He had asked her to put her dog on a leash per a sign in the area, but she refused. During their argument, she told him she was going to call the police and "tell them there's an African American man threatening [her] life," which she proceeded to do.
Cooper wrote that focusing on charging Amy Cooper "lets white people off the hook" from more pressing questions about the "toxic racial bias" that she had quickly tapped into and about fixing policing and the criminal justice system.
"They can scream for her head while leaving their own prejudices unexamined," Cooper wrote. "They can push for her prosecution and pat themselves on the back for having done something about racism, when they’ve actually done nothing, and their own Amy Cooper remains only one purse-clutch in the presence of a black man away."