Musician Keyon Harrold teen son captured on video being falsely accused by Soho Karen of stealing her phone in latest instance of white privilege.
A famed jazz musician has claimed he and his teen son were assaulted at an upscale New York City hotel by a woman who accused the teenage boy of stealing her cellphone over the weekend.
Keyon Harrold on Sunday posted a video on Instagram which showed part of the Saturday incident in the lobby of the Arlo Hotel in SoHo, once again re-igniting conversations of white privilege and how black people are treated and perceived.
The renowned trumpeter said he and his 14-year-old son came down from their hotel room Saturday to get breakfast when they were accosted by a woman since alleged to be Staten Island woman, Cassandra Medina according to social media.
In the one-minute long video, the woman kept insisting that Harrold’s son show her his phone, after claiming the device belonging to her. Video captured her saying amid hotel staff, ‘he’s not leaving’ until they prove that they didn’t steal her phone.
‘This is my phone,’ Harrold’s son is heard telling the woman and the boss, who is not seen in the video. ‘You don’t have to justify nothing to her,’ Harrold tells his son.
Woman: “He’s not leaving…I’m not letting him walk away with my phone.”
The woman’s phone was found in an Uber.pic.twitter.com/qWMKE9XSSy
— Keith Boykin (@keithboykin) December 28, 2020
According to the father, the unhinged woman at one point tackled his son and tried searching his pockets.
‘This incident went on for five more minutes, me protecting my son from this lunatic. She scratched me; she Tackled and grabbed him,’ Harrold wrote in the Instagram caption.
The footage doesn’t appear to show anyone being physically attacked but Harrold can be heard saying ‘get your hands off’ before the video abruptly ended.
The musician said he later filed a police report against the woman.
Harrold said the woman wasn’t a current hotel guest and that she checked out on Dec. 23, a few days before the incident, but the hotel manager still appeared to try to get Harrold’s son to show the woman his phone.
‘He actually empowered her!!! He didn’t even consider the fact we were actually the guests! Now think about the trauma that my son now has to carry, only coming downstairs to have box day brunch with his dad,’ Harrold wrote, adding that an Uber driver later returned the woman her phone.
The Arlo Hotel later posted a statement on Instagram, issuing an apology to Harrold and saying that the incident was ‘inexcusable.’
Cassandra Medina denies she is Soho Karen
‘In investigating the incident further, we’ve learned that the manager on duty promptly called the police regarding the woman’s conduct and that hotel security intervened to prevent further violence; still, more could have been done to deescalate the dispute,’ the statement read.
But there’s more.
Cassandra Medina has since posted a denial that she is ‘Soho Karen’ after being bombed with social media harassment accusing her of being the woman in the video.
On her Instagram Sunday, Cassandra Medina, a registered nurse from Staten Island, posted a message saying, ‘I’ve been tagged in this video all morning and this is not me.’
‘It’s not cool to be wrongly accused on social media, and I don’t want someone to do that.’
In her post, she then addressed Harrold, saying, ‘I hope you truly find (sic) who this individual is because what she did is disgusting and this hotel should be held responsible.’
‘I’m the victim’
Her account, which has 1,888 followers, shows images of her in SoHo and NoMad at Arlo.
The case is the latest of confrontations captured on video of black people being wrongly accused over the last year. The most recent and widely shared incident occurred in Central Park back in May when a white woman aka Central Park Karen, falsely accused Christian Cooper, a black birdwatcher of assault after he asked her to put her dog on a leash — only for the woman to call 911 and claim, ‘a black man was threatening her.’