Detectives from NYPD fly to CA to question woman who ‘wrongfully accused’ black teen of stealing her phone

MANHATTAN, NY- On Wednesday, January 6th, two New York police detectives traveled to California to search for a woman who wrongfully accused a 14-year-old boy of stealing her cell phone in the lobby of a SoHo hotel back in December 2020.

According to NYPD authorities, two detectives from the NYPD’s Manhattan South detective bureau will be the ones to travel across the county in search of 22-year-old Miya Ponsetto.

Video footage of Ponsetto’s attack on 14-year-old Keyon Harrold Jr., the son of Grammy-winning jazz musician Keyon Harrold Sr., who was recording the incident, quickly went viral. The video shows Ponsetto falsely accusing the teenage boy of stealing her phone.

The video then shows Ponsetto lunging at the boy and his father, who said that she scratched him as he tried to protect his young son. Harrold Sr. said:

“This could have gone very wrongly if I had come down after my son. The idea of trauma goes above any charge that we may have…I bring my son places where he shouldn’t have to deal with injustices and shouldn’t have to be profiled.”

The boy’s mother, Kat Rodriguez, a school teacher, said:

“No 14-year-old boy should feel threatened by anybody. When an incident arrives like this in the classroom, I hear everyone’s side of the story.”

She added:

“It breaks my heart that this is happening to our son. This incident could have ended very differently. We have seen this end very differently. I pray for the mothers and fathers that have lose their sons to racial injustice. I cannot begin to imagine how you feel because I know how I feel right now.”

The New York Post reported that following the December 26, 2020 incident, which Mayor Bill de Blasio called “racism, pure and simple,” Ponsetto, who has since been dubbed “SoHo Karen,” will first be questioned by detectives and could very well be arrested and extradited back to New York. 

Chief of Detectives Rodney Harrison said previously that Ponsetto could be tried for assault and maybe even grand larceny or attempted robbery, but sources said she will likely be charged with attempted robbery in the third degree.

The incident occurred at the Arlo SoHo Hotel after Ponsetto realized she could not find her cell phone. Ponsetto immediately jumped to the conclusion that someone stole her phone, so she demanded to see the boutique hotel’s surveillance footage to help find the “culprit.”

She went on to instruct a bystander to “empty their pocket,” then honed in on Keyon and accused him, the teenage boy, of having her phone in his pocket. Ponsetto told CNN:

“That’s when everything got a little bit more serious.”

The teen’s father began recording the scene, which showed an irate woman coming towards them and demanding to see the phone Keyon was holding, which was his own phone, not hers. Ponsetto then alerted a hotel employee and told him to get her phone for her.

In the video, you can hear her say, “Literally, get it back for me, please.” Both Harrold Jr. and his father tried to leave the lobby, at which point Ponsetto charged at both of them and declared she was not going to let them “walk away with my phone.”

The teenage boy’s father said that Ponsetto attacked them and scratched his neck before she grabbed his son and tackled him to the floor. The teen suffered minor injuries from the attack. Keyon said in an interview with CNN:

“I don’t know what would have happened if my Dad wasn’t there, honestly. Why would she do something like this to a kid who has never met you at all?

Ponsetto’s LA-based attorney, Shaten Ghatan confirmed to NBC News that Ponsetto was in NYC visiting her father when she lost her phone in an Uber. Ghatan is blaming the ride-share and said that if the phone had been returned 15 minutes earlier, the incident would have never happened.

Ghatan said that the incident was not a “race related issue,” as Mayor de Blasio called it. Instead, Ghatan said that Ponsetto was scared and anxious because she was alone and did not know anyone in the city. She said:

“Miya is young. She let her emotions get the best of her. That phone could have been in the hand of a 90-year-old grandma, an Asian person…someone black or blue. It wasn’t a race related issue. Things took a life of their own.”

The attorney added that Ponsetto is of Puerto Rican descent who works “9-5 at a typical place” and “not a young lady of privilege.” She said:

“She was a scared girl alone in a city she doesn’t know and lost her one point of contact for her numbers. She lost her mind for a hot minute. She is sorry.”

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LET Unity

Protester spits in officer’s face, gets released after apologizing and blaming ‘systemic racism’

November 27th, 2020

LONDON, ENG- After being arrested for spitting on a police constable (PC) and cocaine possession, an England rioter is walking free. During trial, the protester was released after apologizing and blaming her actions on “systemic racism”.

Halina Kaszycka-Williams, 31, pled guilty to the possession of cocaine and spitting in the face of PC Sam Franks. The attack occurred in Notting Hill on May 31, at the peak of the Coronavirus pandemic.

But, after pleading guilty, the defendant walked away from the courtroom without consequences. According to Court News UK, Kaszycka-Williams received a conditional discharge and a fine for the possession of illicit drugs.

While reading his decisions, the Magistrate Andrew Hammond acknowledged the extreme leniency being given to Kaszycka-Williams.

Hammond said:

“I hope you recognize we are treating you more leniently than even your own advocate suggested.”

The magistrate later said that the criminal’s apology was noted in his sentencing decision:

“We note your apology… and the community work we’ve been told you do,”

He continued:

“Because of that mitigation… we think it is just in this instance acceptable for you to be dealt with by way of a conditional discharge by way of the offence of beating an emergency worker.”

However, Kaszycka-Williams’ apology was less than sincere. The rioter appeared in court wearing all black and refused to acknowledge the severity of her crimes. Instead of apologizing for her actions and asking PC Franks for forgiveness, the defendant pleaded racism as her reasoning for attacking an officer.

Kaszycka-Williams claimed that “years of anger and hurt” had caused her to spit on an innocent officer:

“I have witnessed the effects of systemic racism my entire life. As a black woman, witnessing the death of so many other black people was a deeply traumatic time for me. There were years of anger and hurt and disrespect I had not reacted to until that day.”

After reading through her prepared list of excuses, Kaszycka-Williams finally gave a halfhearted apology for her actions:

“With the stress of the perpetual news cycle on Covid-19 and mass protests…. my mental health was already at a breaking point. I would like to apologize.”

Kaszycka-Williams’ lawyer, Danielle Manson, also provided excuses for the criminal’s actions. Manson argued that the defendant didn’t mean to spit in the face of PC Franks… she only meant to spit on his back. Manson then claimed that Kaszycka-Williams’ attempt to “spit on PC Frank’s back” was intended to humiliate the officer rather than harm him.

Manson said:

“It was her intention to humiliate the officer almost akin to sticking a sign on his back – something others can see but not him,”

Kaszycka-Williams was not the only rioter to be arrested during London’s Black Lives Matter protests. Following George Floyd’s death, thousands of protesters gathered to denounce, what they perceive to be, systemic racism.

Protesters broke lockdown orders and gathered in Trafalgar Square. Attendees shouted “f*ck Boris” and “f*ck the police” during the demonstrations. One protester can be heard screaming into a megaphone saying:

“We need to burn this shit down. I don’t care what the London mayor says. The West is falling! The West is falling!”

Overall, 23 people were arrested during this protest in London, including Kaszycka-Williams. Despite committing an egregious crime against an officer and possessing cocaine, Kaszycka-Williams was allowed a 12-month conditional discharge and received a fine of £565 for the possession of a class A drug.

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Proposed bill in New Jersey would allow illegal immigrants to obtain professional and occupational licenses

Louisville protester who shot two officers during a riot charged with assault, not attempted murder

LOUISVILLE, KY- A protester in Louisville shot two Louisville Metro police officers during the Breonna Taylor riots in late September. Despite the shooter striking and injuring two officers, prosecutors have declined to charge the would-be cop killer with attempted murder.

Larynzo D. Johnson, 26, participated in Louisville riots on September 23rd following the decision of a Jefferson County grand jury to prosecute only one of three officers involved in Taylor’s shooting.

This decision, while legally and morally sound, sparked outrage among protestors and led to violent rioting. Johnson was one of the protesters that took violent action.

The shooting occurred at approximately 8:30pm near Brook Street and Broadway, where demonstrators gathered to protest the grand jury’s decision.

Allegedly, Johnson attended the demonstration and fired several shots at officers who were doing crowd control work in the area. Johnson was apprehended near the scene minutes after the shooting.

Johnson injured two officers, Maj. Aubrey Gregory and Officer Robinson Desroches. Gregory has been an officer in Louisville since 1999 and is now the commander of Louisville Metro Police Department’s (LMPD) special operations division.

Desroches began working for the LMPD in March of 2019 and was formerly a football star at Kentucky Wesleyan University.

Gregory was struck in the hip and Desroches was hit in the abdomen. Both officers were hospitalized following the shooting with Desroches spending almost two weeks in a local hospital recovering. 

According to court documents regarding the case, witnesses have identified Johnson as the person who shot at officers and later attempted to flee the area. The report also states that the shooter, “showed an extreme indifference in the value of human life” to officers at the scene.

Now, Johnson has been indicted for the shooting of Gregory and Desroches, but the charges aren’t what was expected for such a heinous crime.

The shooter is facing two counts of first degree assault and 33 charges of first degree wanton endangerment. The wanton endangerment charges are because Johnson fired shots that could have hit near by demonstrators and officers.

The two assault charges are due to the gunshots that did inflict injury on officers. Many say these charges are not enough.

In an interview with DailyMail, a National Police Association spokeswoman, Betsy Brantner Smith stated that the Johnson’s attack on officers should carry a minimum charge of attempted murder:

“A police officer shot in the gut, and a police officer shot in the hip, in the middle of violent riots and looting would indicate to me that that should be – at a minimum – attempted murder,”

In a statement to DailyMail, Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney Jeffrey Cooke argued that additional charges could be added later, but he is “sure that officers investigating the case filed what charges they felt appropriate at the time”.

Cooke also added:

“Ordinarily if someone intentionally shoots at someone with a firearm and hits them the shooter would be charged with Assault in the First Degree. Depending on the facts, Attempted Murder could also be charged,”

However, in Kentucky it is common for people who shoot at police to be charged with attempted murder, whether or not the bullets cause injury. In Johnson’s case, the lack of regard for human life and the injuries sustained by officers should have led to attempted murder charges immediately.

Johnson’s bond is set at $1 million and he is due to be back in court on November 23rd.

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Author: Jenna Curren

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