Lacy Park Murder Victim Remembered As Avid Sportsman, Family Man


Friday, July 24th 2015, 6:23 pm
By: News On 6


Tulsa police want to know who ambushed and killed a man leaving the Lacy Park tennis court. Homicide detectives are trying to figure out why James Cooper was shot.

Friends of Cooper said he was a dedicated member of the community and loved playing with the Northside Tennis Association. 

John Fellows says his friend James Cooper was a church-going family man, a respected developer - businessman - and father of four who volunteered his time to teach children how to play tennis.

"You can depend on him if you need something; he was there for you. You know, he's that kind of guy," John Fellows said.

Cooper's life ended when someone shot him Thursday night outside the Lacy Park tennis courts. Police say the shooter approached Cooper who was putting his tennis gear in his car, shot him, and then ran towards a nearby bike path.

The question for Homicide detectives -- why someone would target Cooper.    

"It's one of those cold-blooded, calculated, premeditated murders because he has a getaway right there by the beltway," said Sergeant Dave Walker, Tulsa Police Department.

7/24/2015 Related Story: Police Identify Man Shot To Death After Playing Tennis At Tulsa Park

The investigation into Cooper's murder is already getting attention from crews producing a national TV series.

"Being a tennis player, being a good guy, being engaged in the community doesn't get you dead, something has to happen there," Walker said.

Walker says tennis players should keep their cars in a lit area and as close as possible to the courts.

"I would say you have to be aware; I wouldn't quit. Don't quit playing tennis. Don't let this insurgent win," the homicide detective said.

Fellows says Cooper will be missed and was a friend to everyone.

"As far as I'm concerned, he's a well respected man and he wouldn't do wrong nobody," said John Fellows, a friend of the victim. "It's sad thing for you know for this thing to happen."

Police have a very limited description of the shooter.

Anyone with information about the shooting can call Crime Stoppers at 918-596-COPS.