There was the “Daddy” hat. There was the wave of the hand, and imperious “All right, Gayle. Enough!” And, in Gayle King’s now viral-interview with Miya Ponsetto, the so-called “SoHo Karen” arrested for attacking a Black teen and falsely accusing him of stealing her cell phone, there were the baffling answers the interviewee presented for her actions.
King spoke with Ponsetto, 22, “hours before she was arrested,” according to CBS This Morning. Ponsetto apologized from “the bottom of my heart” for the incident—but then repeatedly defended her actions, insisting, “I don’t feel like this one mistake does define me.” “I consider myself to be super sweet,” she added. “I’m a 22-year-old girl... how is one girl accusing a guy about a phone a crime?”
Ponsetto chose a puzzling piece of attire for her TV debut: a black baseball cap emblazoned with “Daddy.” It appears to be from Urban Outfitters, and you can get your very own now on sale for $16.
The Daily Beast spoke with Ponsetto’s lawyer, Sharen H. Ghatan of California Legal Counsel, and she is just as confused as we are about the accessory.
“The hat definitely wasn’t chosen by me,” Ghatan said. “My office gave her advice on what to wear. We asked her to wear professional attire. When she came to the interview, I told her the baseball hat wouldn’t be something we could use in the interview. One because of the lighting, two because of the logo. She was very defiant and insistent that she wear it. I specifically asked her to remove it before the interview. She said it’s her story, it’s her hat, and she wants to wear it. She’s a very challenging client.”
Ghatan thought the choice “might cause some controversy.” Both she and the crew asked Ponsetto to remove it multiple times.
“It was important to her,” Ghatan stressed. Why? “I am uncertain. I’m very concerned about her mental health and wellbeing because for her to start an interview with such a defiant tone, disregarding everything she’s saying, including myself, and I’m here for her best interest, concerned me greatly.”
Asked to elaborate on the state of Ponsetto's mental health, Ghatan replied, “She’s just not well. I am not a psychiatrist... She’s not well, that is all I can say. She needs help, and it is not the type of help I can give.”
Ghatan told TMZ that she was “forced to cancel other” interviews after realizing what a train-wreck the King interview turned out to be.
“I am uncertain as to how I’m going to proceed,” the lawyer said to The Daily Beast. “I’m uncertain if I can proceed forward with a client who is unwilling and unaccepting of the legal advice I’m giving her.”
Like the rest of the internet, Ghatan praised Gayle King for keeping her composure during a tense interview where her client shushed the anchor. “The interview was very well done. Gayle King is such a professional, as is the entire CBS team. They’re fantastic.”
At the end of the clip, Ghatan tried to reel Ponsetto back a bit. According to her, that was not the only attempt. “I interrupted [Miya] several times, and I intervened several times. I made statements and tried my best, but she would cut me off and stop. It put me at a disadvantage to help her.”
Ghatan added that this was, “the most challenging thing I’ve faced with a client, frankly. Out of a thousand clients, you might get one that doesn’t listen, the other 99 want to listen. She happens to be the one.”