Miya Ponsetto, the woman who was caught on camera attacking a black teenager after falsely accusing him of stealing her phone has been arrested.
She fled New York after officers issued a warrant for her arrest. She was finally apprehended by Ventura County sheriff’s deputies in California on Thursday after a brief car chase that ended with her refusing to leave her car.
“She tried to slam the door on one of the deputies and that’s when they just reached in and forcibly removed her,” Capt. Eric Buschow of Ventura County PD said.
On Boxing Day, Ponsetto accosted Jazz musician Keyon Harrold and his son 14-year-old Keyon Harrold Jr., in the lobby of the Arlo Hotel in Soho, New York and demanded that the boy handed over her phone even though he kept saying that it was his phone.
Security video released by the NYPD shows Ponsetto frantically grabbing at the teen as he tried to get away from her through the hotel’s front door. She’s seen clutching him from behind before both tumble to the ground.
Her phone was later returned to the hotel by an Uber driver.
Officers did not say what charges she might face.
Her attorney, Sharon Ghatan is doubling down on her mental health issues and insisting that the problem was not about race.
“She suffers from a lot of anxiety attacks,” Ghatan said. “She was alone … 22 years old in a city she doesn’t know, absolutely nobody there and her phone had everything about it.”
Ghatan said she was concerned for Ponsetto’s well-being, saying she was “emotionally and mentally unwell.”
The video drew comparison to an incident last May when Amy Cooper called the police on black birdwatcher Christian Cooper falsely claiming that he was threatening her by telling her to put her dog on a leash as park rules state.