Black teen falsely accused of stealing iPhone is seeking therapy

Keyon Harrold Jr. asked his father "Why me?" after being assaulted by a woman in a NYC hotel

The young teen who was assaulted in a New York City hotel is now seeking therapy.

Read More: New video shows woman attacking Black teen at Arlo Hotel over iPhone

Award-winning musician Keyon Harrold is seeking counseling for his 14-year-old son, Keyon Jr. after he was assaulted by a woman, Miya Ponsetto, who falsely accused him of stealing her iPhone on Dec. 26 at a New York City hotel. Dubbed ‘Soho Karen’ after Harrold posted video of the altercation on his Instagram page, the Simi Valley, California native is being sought for arrest in the incident.

Per TMZ, the teen’s parents are seeking therapy because the incident traumatized him.

“He wonders if he’s good enough to own an iPhone, or whether he’s out of place at a nice hotel,” Harrold said to the outlet.

“I have tried to instill dignity in my son. I’m trying to build his ego, because for so long egos of Black men have been shattered.”

As a musician, Harrold travels often and his son is accustomed to staying in hotels but now says the young man questions himself, is afraid of going to hotels, and worries about being assaulted. The teen also told his dad he felt like a criminal after being falsely accused.

Jazz musician Keyon Harrold speaks at a press conference held in lower Manhattan on December 30, 2020, in New York City. After Harrold shared video footage of a white woman assaulting his son and wrongfully accusing the boy of stealing her phone in a Manhattan hotel lobby, civil rights leaders have called for an end to persistent racial profiling and injustice. (Photo by Scott Heins/Getty Images)

Harrold Jr. asked his father “Why me?” after the incident, which the family believes was racially motivated.

In addition to seeking therapy, the Harrolds are taking legal action.

As previously reported by theGrio, the Harrold family has since obtained legal representation by famed civil rights attorney Ben Crump, who has called on Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance Jr. to charge Ponsetto with assault. The NYPD says they are currently trying to track her down.

Ponsetto has been arrested twice before for public intoxication, according to TMZ. As reported by theGrio, the 22-year-old says she is Puerto Rican.

“When I saw this story, I thought about how I was one of those kids whose father never took him anywhere for Christmas, never had brunch with my father,” the Rev. Al Sharpton said, according to ABC-7.

Read More: Woman expected to be charged in alleged hotel attack involving Black teen

“And for this Black man to take his Black son, put him in a hotel during a pandemic, and spend Christmas with him, raising him, and to be assaulted because of the color of their skin, I wanted to stand with this man and this woman who provided for their son, and they’re being criminalized for it. The arrogance and audacity of this woman.”

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theGrio’s Stephanie Guerilus, Gerren Keith Gaynor and Matthew Allen contributed to this report.

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