Woman accused of assaulting teen over iPhone claims to be victim
The woman did not provide proof to back up her claims in a phone conversation with CNN
The woman who falsely accused the 14-year-old son of jazz musician Keyon Harrold of stealing her iPhone and assaulting him is claiming she is the actual victim.
The 22-year-old white woman at the center of the incident at the Arlo SoHo Hotel in New York, which the family believed was racially motivated, reached out to CNN to share her side of the incident that took place last weekend. CNN chose not to publicly name the woman who claimed she was receiving death threats.
In a 20-minute phone interview on Tuesday, she claimed that she approached Arlo Hotel security to determine who had taken her missing iPhone. She claimed to have told another guest at the hotel to “empty their pocket,” before turning her attention on Keyon Harrold Jr.
“That’s when everything got a little bit more serious,” she said.
CNN described the woman as “rambling” on the phone conversation and that she expressed concern over how she came across in the viral video of the incident.
“Of course I worry. That’s not who I am. I actually… try very hard to make sure that I am always doing the right thing.”
At one point, the woman claimed that she was the one assaulted despite the video uploaded by Harrold Sr. appearing to show her lunge at his son. CNN reported that the woman stopped responding to texts and messages after requesting proof of her allegations.
Before the woman cut off communication with CNN, she offered to speak with the Harrold’s and participate in any police investigation. As theGrio reported, the NYPD announced on Wednesday that formal charges would be brought against her.
“After we were able to get video,” Rodney Harrison, the NYPD chief of detectives, said at a news briefing. “we’re now looking to charge this individual with assault and maybe even look at grand larceny or maybe even attempted robbery.”
The development follows the call to action that civil rights attorney Ben Crump and the Harrold’s demanded on Monday. They want District Attorney Cy Vance Jr. to charge her with assault.
“We strongly urge Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance Jr. to bring assault and battery charges against this woman to send the message that hateful, racially motivated behavior is unacceptable. This is what it will take to drive change,” Crump said in a statement.
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