PASADENA, Calif. - Legendary Laker Michael Cooper and his family continue to grieve following the sudden loss of his brother after investigators said he was gunned down at a park in Pasadena over the weekend.
On Wednesday, the former NBA star joined officials as they announced the criminal charges against 24-year-old Aaron Miguel Conell, the suspect in Mickey Cooper’s killing.
"Yes, we’re going to miss Mickey, so we like to feel that he’s in a better place," Michael Cooper said.
During the early morning hours of Saturday, Nov. 18, Michael's younger brother, Mickey, was found in Pasadena's Washington Park suffering from gunshot wounds. He was declared dead by authorities at the scene.
"This is the time of year when families should be together," said Pasadena Mayor Victor Gordon. "When they’ve been a victim of crime, that can’t happen. So we should do everything we can to avoid situations like this."
Cooper said Washington Park is where he and his brother grew up playing basketball.
"The reason is that my brother was there was because it was a safe haven for him…and it had been up until that tragic night," Michael Cooper said.
"We know Washington Park to be a safe and inviting place during daylight hours, but it’s been something else over these past several weeks," Councilmember Jess Rivas added.
Michael Cooper also shared that his brother has been struggling over the years.
"My brother had an addiction he just couldn’t shake. Over the past year, we tried to get him help," he said.
Aaron Miguel Conell has been charged with the murder of Mickey Cooper
Officials announced Wednesday Conell was charged with one count each of murder, attempted murder, and assault with a semiautomatic firearm, with allegations on all counts.
Conell is being held on $4 million bail and he is scheduled to be arraigned Nov. 27.
Head Coach Pat Riley of the Los Angeles Lakers talks with his player Michael Cooper #21 during an NBA basketball game circa 1985. Riley coached the Lakers from 1981-1990. (Photo by Focus on Sport/Getty Images)
Michael Cooper was a "Showtime Laker" who played for the franchise from 1978-1990. He played for the Lakers his entire NBA career, winning five championships along with fellow legends such as Magic Johnson, James Worthy, and Byron Scott.