Miya Ponsetto: SoHo Karen flees to California, doesn't see 'what the problem is' after 'assaulting' Black teen
Miya Ponsetto aka SoHo Karen, 22, has reportedly fled to her family's $389,000 home in California after the incident at the New York hotel
The woman who was dubbed "SoHo Karen" after she was seen in footage posted by Grammy-award winning trumpet player Keyon Harrold on Instagram on December 28, accusing his son of stealing her iPhone in a hotel lobby, recently said she did not see what the "problem" was with her behavior during the incident.
"SoHo Karen" has now been identified as 22-year-old Miya Ponsetto, an ex-cheerleader, who inside the Arlo Hotel in Manhattan’s SoHo neighborhood, was seen falsely accusing the Black teen of stealing her phone only to have her Uber return it to her minutes later. When a New York Post photographer approached Ponsetta coming out of a McDonald's in Fillmore, California, on Friday, January 1, she insisted that she could not understand why the incident had gone viral. “I’m actually 22, so I don’t know what the problem is here,” she said even after the photographer pointed to Harold's son's age. “And I’m also Puerto Rican so thank you. Take care of yourself.”
Ponsetta donned all black and a coronavirus face shield as she walked into the parking lot. When she was asked if she regretted what happened after the viral video emerged, she said, “I’m good, thank you. Have a very good day. Take care of yourself," before she climbed into a large Range Rover SUV.
NYPD is currently considering bringing a slew of charges against her, including assault, grand larceny and attempted robbery, reports said. She has reportedly fled to her family's $389,000 home in the small farming town of Piru, which is north of Los Angeles, after the incident at the New York hotel.
She was previously arrested by Beverly Hills police back in February for being drunk in public, according to an online docket for the Los Angeles Airport Courthouse cited by the Daily Mail. Her mom, Nicole, was a co-defendant booked on the same charge plus assaulting a police officer. Her hearing is scheduled for January 28. She was also arrested in May on four DUI counts, according to the Mail, and pled guilty in September with a sentencing hearing set for on January 14.
The musician recorded the video in which the woman was seen lunging at him and his 14-year-old son as she desperately tried to claim that the iPhone in Harrold's son's possession belonged to her. "I hate I have to post this!!! I am furious!!! We see this crap happening all the time, but it hits different when it hits home!!! I typically try to keep things positive, but nothing about this video is positive. The lady in this video assaulted my 14-year-old son and me as we came down from our room in the @arlohotels Arlo Soho to get breakfast. This person quote on quote 'lost' her iPhone, and apparently, my son magically acquired it, which merely ridiculous," the musician wrote as the caption to his post.
In the clip, the unidentified woman is seen getting the attention of the hotel manager by claiming that the Black teen had taken her phone. As the teenager said, “This is my phone,” Harrold intervened, telling him: “You don’t have to explain nothing to her.” As the woman continued to frantically insist that it was her phone and asked the teen to prove that it was not, Harrold replied: “Are you kidding me? You feel like there’s only one iPhone in the world?”
In the video, she can be seen continuously lunging and toward Harrold as he was shielding his son from her. At one point, she ended up on the floor, after seemingly losing her balance. “She scratched me,” Harrold wrote, “She tackled and grabbed him. He is a child!!!” Harrold posted that her iPhone was finally found when an Uber driver returned it to her after the incident was over. However, the father-son duo never received an apology for the accusations hurled at them by the woman. “No apology from her after this traumatic situation to my son, not me,” Harrold stated. “No apologies from the establishment. This s— happens too often. It needs to stop!!!”
After the video went viral, the Arlo Hotel issued a statement on Sunday, December 27, condemning the woman’s actions. “We’re deeply disheartened about the recent incident of baseless accusation, prejudice, and assault against an innocent guest of Arlo Hotel,” the statement read. “In investigating the incident further, we’ve learned that the manager on duty promptly called the police regarding the woman’s conduct and that hotel security intervened to prevent further violence; still, more could have been done to deescalate the dispute."