“SoHo Karen” Who Falsely Accused Black Teen Of Theft Now In California Sheriff’s Custody, NYPD Awaits Extradition
The woman, spotted in a viral video falsely claiming that a black teenager stole her iPhone (when she actually left it in an Uber) and then assaulted the boy in a Manhattan hotel, has now been arrested in California.
Miya Ponsetto, 22, a Simi Valley, Calif. Resident, was arrested Thursday and is being held without bail as she is being extradited to New York on charges.
Jazz musician Keyon Harrold shared a video of the December 26, 2020 incident at the Arlo Hotel in SoHo, showing a young woman demanding the iPhone from Harrold’s 14-year-old son, Keyon Harrold Jr., insisting that he stole it . The father pointed out that he and his son have just got off an elevator. “Are you kidding me? You have the feeling that there is only one iPhone in the world?”
The woman also hired an Arlo manager who asks Keyon Jr. about the iPhone and tells Harrold to tell his son not to give it to him. Then the woman attacks the boy to get the phone.
An Uber driver apparently later found the woman’s phone and returned it to her.
On December 30, 2020, the NYPD released a video showing the woman attacking Keyon Jr. and asked the public for help in finding her.
On Saturday, December 26th, in this video, the woman falsely accused an innocent 14-year-old teenager of stealing her cell phone. She then physically assaulted him and fled the place before police officers arrived on the spot. pic.twitter.com/qtZZWetBWH
– Chef Rodney Harrison (@NYPDDetectives) December 31, 2020
The woman in the video was quickly identified as Ponsetto. Officials from the Ventura County Sheriff’s Office and NYPD reportedly followed her with a cursory warrant and attempted to drag her near her home, but she slapped a door on the leg of a deputy when she was taken out of her car.
Sharen Ghatan, Ponsetto’s attorney, told TMZ Thursday that she didn’t know her client had been arrested but said, “Miya failed to understand the gravity of her circumstances. She specifically ignores advice and has become a villain … I had I met up with Miya in person today and after seeing her in person I found that she is just sick. She is emotionally and mentally fragile. I had to cancel national interviews because I was concerned about her wellbeing and lack of Understanding I’m here to lead her as a legal advisor – but if she’s not willing to take my advice, there’s not much else I can do. “
In an interview with the NY Times, Ghatan alleged that Ponsetto did not target Keyon Jr. because he was black: “She’s not trying to make a racist statement … She’s a woman of mixed ethnicity herself. She isn’t Blonde, blue eyed privileged white lady. She literally just wanted her cell phone back. “
Harrold spoke about the incident at a press conference with civil rights attorney Benjamin Crump and Rev. Al Shaprton. “I want my son to grow up,” he said. “I can’t even come down to New York City, New York City and just have brunch without being attacked and unjustly accused.”