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Miya Ponsetto

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Miya Ponsetto, who has been infamously dubbed “SoHo Karen,” pled guilty in connection to the hate crime assault she committed against 14-year-old Keyon Harrold Jr. back in December 2020.

Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg served Ponsetto a light plea deal, which will require her to “live a law-abiding life”  for the next two years. Ponsetto will also avoid jail time, but that’s only if she continues to receive counseling and complete probation associated with her DUI case stemming from January 2021 in California. Once Ponsetto successfully completes her two years, she’ll be eligible to enter a new plea towards a lesser misdemeanor charge, but if trouble finds the young woman again, she could face up to 4 years in prison, according to TMZ.

Paul D’Emilia, Ponsetto’s attorney said he was “pleased” with the proceeding.

“We are appreciative of the district attorney’s thoughtful and empathetic approach to finding an acceptable conclusion, especially in light of the unreasonable pressure brought to bear by many voices not familiar with the more granular details of what occurred that evening,” D’Emilia said in a statement.

Miya Ponsetto accused 14-year-old Keyon Jr. of stealing her iPhone in the lobby of SoHo’s posh Arlo Hotel back on December 26, 2020. As he and his father, Keyon Harrold Sr. attempted to leave the hotel lobby, Ponsetto tackled the young Black teen to the ground and attacked him. Her phone was later returned by an Uber driver, as she had left the device in a cab earlier that day. Video footage of the incident went viral across the internet.

During an interview with the New York Times, Keyon Harrold Sr., a well-known jazz musician, said he was appalled that the hotel’s staff immediately assumed his son was guilty.

“I wonder what would happen if it were different, if it were a Black woman and there was a white 14-year-old,” he added.

Nationally renowned civil rights attorney Ben Crump condemned Bragg’s lenient plea deal, arguing that the ruling was too soft on Ponsetto’s actions.

“When Miya Ponsetto couldn’t find her cell phone, she defaulted to blaming and assaulting an innocent Black teenager and was aided by the Arlo Hotel staff, who backed her up instead of defending their Black guest,” Crump said in a statement. “It’s highly disappointing that she was permitted to plea down, only receiving probation.  We won’t change the culture until we hold people accountable for their outrageously bad behavior.”