Toronto's "Chair Girl" Marcella Zoia has been in the spotlight for the past year after a video of her throwing a chair off a highrise condo went viral. The Toronto icon pleaded guilty to mischief endangering life back in November, and her sentencing hearing is set to take place in February. Marcella Zoia's lawyer Greg Leslie has been by her side throughout the past year, but this isn't the first time he has had a high profile case.
In fact, Leslie has been practicing law for over 25 years and has some serious persuasion tactics.
The Toronto lawyer was once spotted bringing a baseball bat to court in 2018 while defending a client. Why did he do it? To leave a statement. According to the Montreal Gazette, Greg Leslie was defending his client, Steve Barnes, who was accused of manslaughter.
Barnes stabbed his alleged drug dealer George Berry in the stomach, which resulted in his death. It seemed that Barnes owed his drug dealer between $6,000 and $8,000 for drugs. When Berry showed up to Barnes' house to collect the money, he showed up carrying a baseball bat. That's when things got out of hand, leading to Leslie's client killing Berry in self-defence.
Marcella Zoia, alledged chair thrower from a downtown highrise has been charged with mischief— endangering life, mi… https://t.co/8scFgII18x— Steve Russell (@Steve Russell) 1550094192.0
While defending his client, Leslie showed up to the courthouse wielding a baseball bat and smacked the bat over a table.He then said to the jury, “imagine that’s your head. What would you do?"
The Montreal Gazette reported that it took the jury just a little bit over an hour to decide that the defendant was not guilty and that he had indeed acted in self-defence.
Leslie told Narcity that, "I wanted to make an impact and I wanted to startle the jury. The best way to do so was to show them what kind of damage the baseball bat could do."
"So, that's why I brought it to court and I smashed it down on the desk, and right away I said to them, imagine if that was your head."
When asked if he thought it made a difference in how the jury viewed the case, Leslie revealed, "I think it left an impression on them. Instead of just making a statement... I think it left a statement and they understood."
Here’s video taken of Marcella Zoia arriving at Old City Hall courthouse just before 10 am today for her sentencing… https://t.co/9dvuzC3RKF— Catherine McDonald (@Catherine McDonald) 1579015627.0
Although Zoia's case is different in nature, the Toronto lawyer has been by his client's side since the beginning of the case.
In fact, Leslie was spotted telling reporters that he believes his client could have a shot at serving through community service, opposed to six months in jail.
Zoia will be back in court for her sentencing on February 7, after the original court date was postponed due to rising questions about who posted the viral video of her throwing the chair.