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Woman Who Called Cops On Black Bird Watcher Sues Former Employer For Discrimination

Christian Cooper

Amy Cooper, the White woman made famous for threatening then calling and lying to the police about a Black birdwatcher is suing her former employer. Cooper became angry after she was asked to leash her dog in an area of Central Park that requires all pets be on leashes.

In her lawsuit, Cooper cited racial and gender discrimination.


Cooper filed a complaint on Tuesday night against Franklin Templeton, the investment company where she worked as an insurance portfolio manager.


Franklin Templeton, which is part of Franklin Resources Inc, fired her after she faced backlash from the viral video taken on May 25, 2020, of her encounter with birdwatcher Christian Cooper—who is of no relation.

She said the company's actions substantially ruined her career and caused her emotional distress.


The complaint filed in Manhattan federal court said:

"Plaintiff's personal and professional life has been destroyed by the knowingly false statements defendants made."




According to Yahoo News, Amy Cooper is "seeking unspecified damages for race and gender discrimination, defamation, intentional infliction of emotional distress and negligence."

Franklin Templeton plans to defend against her "baseless" claims, including against Chief Executive Jenny Johnson.

The company's statement read:

"We believe the circumstances of the situation speak for themselves and that the company responded appropriately."


In the video taken by Christian, Amy Cooper got out her phone and told him, "I'm going to tell [the police] an African American man is threatening my life," when he was clearly posing no threat to her.

According to a 911 report, by the time New York City police officers responded, neither Christian Cooper nor Amy Cooper was present at the scene of the "active assault" Amy Cooper reported.

A prosecutor later disclosed Amy Cooper had made a second 911 call that was previously unreported, claiming a Black man had "tried to assault her in the Ramble area of the park."

Amy later issued a public apology for her reaction but justified her reason for calling the cops on Christian because she "feared for her life." She also insisted she was not a "racist" person despite citing Christian Cooper's race in her threats to him.

"I think I was just scared," she told CNN.


The public was not forgiving.

After the ensuing backlash to her defensive response and potentially putting Christian Cooper's life at risk by weaponizing the police against a person of color, Franklin Templeton put Amy on suspension pending an investigation.

She was later terminated and the company said they did not condone racism.

Manhattan prosecutors charged her with filing a false police report last July.

The misdemeanor charge was dropped last February after she completed therapy that included instruction on not using racial bias.