A woman in New York City has been caught on camera falsely accusing a 14-year-old Black teenager of stealing her iPhone—before discovering that it was actually left behind in an Uber. Keyon Harrold, a Grammy-winning jazz musician, posted the footage to his Instagram this weekend. It shows him and his teen son in the lobby of a SoHo hotel where they were staying, when the unnamed woman falsely accuses the teenager of taking her cellphone and demanding that he give it back. The masked woman, who appears to be white, eventually tackled the boy and tried to look in his pockets, Harrold told The New York Times, and a hotel worker asked the boy to produce the phone. “I wonder what would happen if it were different, if it were a Black woman and there was a white 14-year-old... They assumed he was guilty,” Harrold said. He added that he was told by the hotel that the phone was later found by an Uber driver and brought back to the hotel, where the musician said he was told by managers that she was a guest earlier in the week. In a statement, the Arlo hotel apologized to Harrold and his son.
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