After the now viral video above made the rounds, James Iannazzo, 48, was arrested and charged with a hate crime following the outburst at Robeks in Fairfield, Conn. over the weekend. The Fairfield Police Department said that Iannazzo returned to the store after a smoothie he purchased caused his son, who is allergic to peanuts, to be rushed to the hospital from his home. Iannazzo apparently ordered the smoothie without peanut butter, but did not explain to employees that his son had an allergy.
The New York Post says he called a staff member a “fucking immigrant.” The Times says he called her an “immigrant loser.”
After the Merrill Lynch office where Iannazzo works was swamped in furious emails, he was fired from his job as an analyst. A spokesman for Bank of America, the parent company of Merrill Lynch, told the New York Times in an email,
“Our company does not tolerate behavior of this kind. We immediately investigated and have taken action. This individual is no longer employed at our firm.”
“When faced with a dire situation for his son, Mr. Iannazzo’s parental instinct kicked in and he acted out of anger and fear,” the father’s lawyer said. “He is not a racist individual and deeply regrets his statements and actions during a moment of extreme emotional stress.”
There are many troubling aspects to the matter.