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'Chair Girl' sentencing held over until March 12, Crown wants 4-6 months in jail

Last Updated Feb 7, 2020 at 2:45 pm EDT

A woman was captured on video throwing a chair off a balcony on Bremner Boulevard. HANDOUT/Toronto Police Service

The woman known as ‘Chair Girl’ will have to wait several weeks to find out if she’ll be sitting in a jail cell after her sentencing was delayed on Friday because of a scheduling conflict with her attorney.

Marcella Zoia will be sentenced on March 12 at 10 a.m. because her lawyer, Gregory Leslie, has a conflicting trial that begins next week.

The Crown is seeking a four-to-six month jail sentence for Zoia, 20, for throwing a chair off a downtown Toronto highrise balcony, telling the judge at Friday’s sentencing hearing that Zoia “is extremely lucky she didn’t kill someone.”

Reading from a prepared statement, Zoia apologized, saying she realized someone could have been seriously injured by her actions. But she said she never intended to hurt anybody and admitted that she has “a lot of growing up to do.”

Crown lawyer, Heather Keating, showed photos from the incident, including the mangled chair at the base of the building after it hit the ground. Keating says the chair could have easily struck people, shattered a windshield, or caused a multi-vehicle accident.

The chair crashed down 45 storeys near a woman with a child in a stroller, but no one was injured in the incident.

In addition to time behind bars, the Crown is seeking two years probation, 240 hours of community service, counselling for alcohol abuse and some form of a social media ban.

Zoia pleaded guilty to mischief causing danger to life in November in an act that was captured on video and went viral on social media, earning her the nickname ‘Chair Girl.’

Zoia’s lawyer argued for a suspended sentence with conditions for alcohol counselling.

Leslie said Zoia was diagnosed with ADHD as a child but didn’t respond well to prescribed medication. He says his client began self medicating with alcohol in high school.

Zoia has denied posting the video of the incident on social media, saying a friend posted it to her SnapChat account without her knowledge — a claim Keating called “unbelievable” in court Friday.

But Zoia’s lawyer countered that she never intended to get any social media attention from the incident. He argues she has an issue with alcohol, was intoxicated, and felt peer pressure, adding that throwing the chair was a spontaneous reaction.

 

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