The woman who went viral for calling the cops on a black man who asked her to leash her dog has been fired from her job, her employer said Tuesday. The confrontation occurred in a section of New York City’s Central Park known as the Ramble, where rules require that dogs be leashed.
The sister of the man who filmed the confrontation, Melody Cooper, explained that he had asked the woman to put her dog on its leash. When she refused to, he began filming.
Oh, when Karens take a walk with their dogs off leash in the famous Bramble in NY’s Central Park, where it is clearly posted on signs that dogs MUST be leashed at all times, and someone like my brother (an avid birder) politely asks her to put her dog on the leash. pic.twitter.com/3YnzuATsDm
— Melody Cooper (@melodyMcooper) May 25, 2020
He asked her not to come any closer, and the exchange escalated. She then threatened to call the police and tell them a black man was threatening her life. The woman repeatedly identified the man by his race in her 911 call, in which she demands they “send the cops immediately.”
“There’s an African-American man, he’s recording me and threatening me and my dog,” she claimed. The video doesn’t show the man threatening the woman.
She can also be seen pulling on the dog’s collar rather than leashing the animal throughout the interaction.
The woman was fired from her job at an investment management company on Tuesday. After an internal review, Franklin Templeton said it “made the decision to terminate the employee involved, effective immediately.”
“We do not tolerate racism of any kind at Franklin Templeton,” the company added.
Following our internal review of the incident in Central Park yesterday, we have made the decision to terminate the employee involved, effective immediately. We do not tolerate racism of any kind at Franklin Templeton.
— Franklin Templeton (@FTI_US) May 26, 2020
In a Facebook post, Abandoned Angels Cocker Spaniel Rescue, Inc. wrote that “the owner has voluntarily surrendered the dog in question to our rescue while this matter is being addressed.”
Thank you to the concerned public for reaching out to us about a video involving a dog that was adopted from our rescue…
As for the man who filmed the woman, his sister said in a follow-up tweet that he is safe. The New York City Office of the Deputy Commissioner, Public Information issued a statement noting that “police were called to the Central Park Ramble for a report of an assault.”
“Upon arrival, police determined two individuals had engaged in a verbal dispute. There were no arrests or summonses issued,” the DCPI stated.
My brother & I are so grateful for your concern! He is fine and left to continue birding after she leashed the dog, as he politely requested. I wanted folks to know what happened to make sure it never happens again from her. All she had to do was put her poor dog on the leash.
— Melody Cooper (@melodyMcooper) May 26, 2020
Cooper issued a follow-up tweet about the incident. “I wanted folks to know what happened to make sure it never happens again from her. All she had to do was put her poor dog on the leash,” she said.
In an interview with NBC New York, the woman apologized for her behavior. “I sincerely and humbly apologize to everyone, especially to that man, his family,” the woman, identified as Amy Cooper, told the station. She also addressed the problematic aspects of calling the police on a black man as a white woman.
“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 said.