Cooper to Face Charges Despite Wife’s Wishes

Michael Cooper, former Laker star and current assistant coach, will be charged with misdemeanor battery and assault resulting from a dispute with his wife last week at their vacation home near Albuquerque, N.M., a police spokesman said Wednesday.

Although Wanda Cooper said she doesn’t want to press charges, Ray Vigil, a spokesman for the Corrales (N.M.) Police Department, said charges will be filed because a police officer witnessed the incident last Wednesday.

Wanda Cooper said police were called after a newly hired housekeeper became concerned.

“I’m not pressing charges against Michael and I would if the situation warranted,” Wanda Cooper said. “They asked me already if I want to press charges and I don’t, but it’s out of my jurisdiction because that’s the new law.


“I know that I wasn’t in any danger with Michael. I’m the one that’s volatile, not him. Michael does not abuse me. I’m not an abused wife. I’m not in denial about this. I’m vehemently opposed to domestic violence, particularly where I’m concerned.

“I would not allow myself to stay in a situation where I thought my life was at stake and I absolutely know that is not the case here. Michael and I had a heated discussion and that’s that. This was blown out of proportion. He’s never expressed anger by manifesting violence.”

A spokeswoman for the Sandoval County district attorney’s office said no trial date has been set.