PASADENA, Calif. (AP) – Pasadena police have made an arrest in connection with the killing of Mickey Cooper, the brother of Lakers legend Michael Cooper. Aaron Miguel Conell, 24, of Pasadena, was taken into custody less than 24 hours after Mickey Cooper’s body was found at Washington Park in Pasadena.
Conell was initially booked on an assault with a firearm charge, and police later added a murder charge as they gathered more evidence. The motive for the killing has not been disclosed at this time.
Michael Cooper, a former Lakers player and coach, expressed bewilderment at the tragic loss of his brother, describing Mickey as a quiet and well-liked person who had grown up playing basketball at the same park where the shooting took place. Michael Cooper also revealed that Mickey had struggled with drug addiction for several years, but emphasized that his brother was loved by many and did not deserve such a fate.
Mickey’s body was discovered in the park around 4 a.m. Saturday when the police department’s ShotSpotter system detected gunfire in the area. Police found him with multiple gunshot wounds and pronounced him dead at the scene. Conell was identified as a “person of interest” within hours and was considered an immediate threat to the public, leading to a coordinated effort by law enforcement to apprehend him.
Authorities have not established a link between this incident and another shooting at the same park last month. Nevertheless, police have increased security in the area following Mickey Cooper’s killing.
Conell is being held on a $2 million bail and the investigation into the tragedy continues.