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Woman in chair-throwing video granted bail

NEWS STAFF | posted Thursday, Feb 14th, 2019

The woman who was allegedly filmed in a video throwing a chair from a balcony narrowly missing the Gardiner Expressway over the weekend has been released on bail after surrendered to police.

Marcella Zoia, 19, of Toronto, was by herself when she walked into 52 division just at 7 a.m. Wednesday.

Zoia appeared in court Wednesday afternoon and was charged with one count each of mischief endangering life, mischief endangering property under $5,000 and common nuisance. She was released on $2,000 bail and ordered to live with her mother. She must also not have any contact with the four individuals that were with her at the time.

Her lawyer said she was embarrassed and understands the public anger generated by the alleged incident.

“She wishes it never happened,” Greg Leslie told reporters after his client was granted bail. “Of course, she would never wish anybody would be hurt.”

Leslie said she understands the public outage. He said he’ll have discussions with the prosecution and said it might not go to trial but said he’ll see how it develops.

Jenna Periti, who has known Zoia from the time they attended St. Elizabeth Catholic High School, in Thornhill called her a smart girl and said the video “does not do her justice.” She said Zoia came to Canada from Brazil just before ninth grade and lived with her mom. She said she was with people who didn’t graduate high school and who like to drink rather than go to school.

The woman allegedly threw items off the balcony, including two chairs, from around the 45th floor of a highrise on Bremner Boulevard.

The incident is believed to have taken place on Saturday morning. No injuries were reported.

Police said the apartment the furniture was allegedly tossed from was being used as a “short-term rental property” but could not say which company it was rented through.

Airbnb said Wednesday that it has contacted Toronto police and offered its support in the investigation.

The company said it has no evidence that the woman was an Airbnb user but it has suspended the account of a guest with a reservation at that building pending further review.

“We remain outraged by the blatant disregard for community safety on display in the video,” the company said in a statement.

Toronto Mayor John Tory condemned the alleged actions, saying they can’t be tolerated.

“This was not just something that was sort of a lark gone bad,” he said. “It was grossly irresponsible behaviour that could have caused serious injury and death.”

Police said Tuesday they identified the woman but did not publicly name her. Officers had given her about 24 hours to turn herself in.

Video available here

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