EM – James Iannazzo, Defendant in Robek’s Video: 5 Quick Facts You Need to Know

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TikTok/Fairfield Police

James Iannazzo was arrested in an incident at Robeks in Fairfield, Connecticut that went viral.

James Iannazzo is a former Merrill Lynch wealth manager who threw a drink at Robeks employees during a racist attack in Fairfield, Connecticut, police say. He was arrested and charged with second-degree intimidation based on bigotry or bias, second-degree breach of the peace and first-degree criminal trespass following the incident on Saturday, January 22, 2022, Fairfield Police said in a statement. Video of the incident was captured by staff and posted online where it went viral.

Iannazzo, 48, told police he was upset because “his son had a severe allergic reaction and that’s why he went back to the shop went,” police said. “During the investigation, coworkers reported that Iannazzo never told them about the peanut allergy, only asked that his drink not contain peanut butter,” police said. According to police, officers were called to Iannazzo’s home around 1:39 p.m. for a youth who had an allergic reaction and required rush to a local hospital.

Fairfield Police said they received multiple calls around 2:26 p.m. from employees at the Black Rock Turnpike store in 2061: “Reports from a customer were throwing things, yelling at employees and refusing to leave.” Police said: “A short time later, Iannazzo returned to Robeks and confronted the employees yelled at her, demanding to know who made the peanut smoothie that caused his child’s allergic reaction. When staff could not provide an answer to Iannazzo, he became angry and yelled at the staff using a series of expletives.

According to police, “He then threw a drink at an employee, which hit his right shoulder. The employee reported that he had no complaints of pain or injury. Iannazzo also made comments to a staffer citing their immigration status. Iannazzo was asked to leave the house several times by the staff but stayed inside and continued to insult the staff. Iannazzo then attempted to open a locked door that led to a “Staff Only” area where the staff were behind the counter.”

Police said Iannazzo left Robeks before officers arrived, but he later turned himself in without incident after being identified during an investigation. He was first identified on social media by TikTok user That DaneshGuy, who found out that Jim Iannazzo was the managing director of Merrill Lynch Wealth Management at his own company, The Iannazzo Group, in Stamford, Connecticut. The video was first posted on TikTok by a 17-year-old employee, @cjjbreezy, and has more than 15 million views.

Iannazzo did not comment on the incident and the viral video. Bill Haldin, a spokesman for Merrill Lynch and Bank of America, said in a statement, “Our company does not tolerate such behavior. We immediately investigated and took action. This person is no longer employed by our company.”

I have identified this man as @MerrillLynch’s James Iannazzo, who is racist and assaults a minor pic.twitter.com/O8Ic6jyh3p

The video was taken by the Posted by Robeks employees on social media and shared by ThatDaneshGuy, a popular TikTok user who exposes racist and other outrageous behavior in public and online, and often uses information to identify the individuals in viral videos. His TikTok video of the incident has more than 3 million views. “I have identified this man as James Iannazzo from @MerrillLynch who is racist and assaulting a minor,” he tweeted.

The video shows Iannazzo at the counter of Robeks Liquor store in Fairfield yelling, “I want to be with the person speak who made this drink. Is that you?” After the staff told him they weren’t sure which one of them made the drink, he replied, “Stupid freaking ignorant high school kids.” One of the Robeks employees then tells him to leave, after asked to speak to the manager and tells him he can call the company and file a complaint, which Iannazzo then calls her a “F***** B****”.

Raising Awareness He was saying racial slurs and yelling at my colleague a minute before I started recording If anyone sees in Fairfield please send a message

The video then shows Iannazzo pouring the drink over the counter throws the employees and again verbally abuses them several times. One of the workers can be heard saying, “I’ll call the police” as Iannazzo approaches the entrance of the store, which is for employees only. One of the workers tells him to “shut up the shit.” out,” and he answered t: “Shut up. Stupid fucking idiot. You are a fucking idiot. I want the damn number.” He then yells, “You’re a damn immigrant loser” and appears to be heading for the door to the area behind the counter that the clerks are standing in front of to block while they call the police.

In a follow-up video, one of the staff said they were fine and revealed that Iannazzo was arrested. But she said police told them it wasn’t an attack because no one was hurt. She added: “I will file a complaint. But I’m fine.”

In an update to her original viral video, TikTok user @cjjbreezy said, “I just want to point out that we called the police.” She said four teenage girls were working in the Robeks store when the incident happened.

“There was a girl, she was 16. It was literally like her second day,” she said in the TikTok video. “She was in the back, already called the police.” She said she and another colleague had to block the door because “before I started recording, he tried to get in several times.”

She added, “For anyone who says they did anything differently, like throwing things at him, that doesn’t make it any better. It would have made things worse for us.” One of the other workers, also 17, said in the video: “I feel like if I threw something back or spit in his face or did something the same as he did, I would have feeling like it would have changed the whole thing. As much as I wanted to, I just felt like it wasn’t really professional for me to do that.”

Her colleague added that she “needs to be the bigger person”. Her friend said, “I love everyone on TikTok for doing their thing and finding out who he was and all his stuff.” The teen, who originally posted the video, added, “Thanks for all the concerns,” but said they were fine.

According to his LinkedIn profile, Iannazzo has been a wealth management consultant and managing director at Merrill Lynch Wealth Management since November 1995. According to his LinkedIn profile, he graduated from UConn in 1995. Originally from Norwalk, Connecticut, Iannazzo graduated from Norwalk High School in 1991. In his profile he wrote, “Since joining Merrill Lynch Wealth Management in 1995, I have worked with a loyal and growing body of clients whose lives require fluency across a wide range of wealth considerations.”

Iannazzo added, he work with “current and retired corporate executives, investment professionals, physicians, attorneys, accountants and entrepreneurs. Most clients are financially demanding, yet neglect the generational transfer of wealth or long-term care considerations.”

Iannazzo wrote on LinkedIn: “My sensitivity to clients’ needs in difficult times – losing a spouse or job, illness or transitioning into retirement – ​​is critical to being an effective financial advisor. Superior wealth management (from accumulation to distribution) requires my constant attention. Going the extra mile for clients has never been out of my way.”

Iannazzo said on LinkedIn that he is married and has three children with his wife. Public records show that Iannazzo and his wife bought a $1.3 million home in the Southport area of ​​Fairfield in 2021. The couple previously lived elsewhere in Fairfield, according to property records.

According to his company’s website, “The Iannazzo Group believes that good client relationships are built through teamwork and client involvement, provided by our consultants, client associates and access to Merrill’s global resources. Our goal is to be your primary source for financial advice and guidance. We want you to appreciate the commitment and care we put into every step of the wealth management process.”

His website adds, “Jim has lived in Connecticut all his life and graduated from the University of Connecticut with one Bachelor’s degree in finance. He and his wife… are the proud parents of three young children and reside in Fairfield, Connecticut. When he’s not coaching his kids in baseball and basketball, Jim and his family enjoy biking, playing all kinds of sports, and traveling together. Jim is also actively involved in community events and supports several nonprofit organizations in the area.”

Iannazzo said on his corporate website, “In March 2019, Barron’s named Jim Iannazzo one of America’s Top 1,200 Advisors for the fifth consecutive year: State by State’. Jim was also named to Forbes’ 2019 list of ‘Best in State Wealth Advisors’ for the second year running.” He said on the website, “It’s rewarding to bring my experience and energy to clients. Some clients have concentrated stocks and need to diversify their portfolio. Business owners may want information on an exit strategy. Others want to responsibly pass wealth on to their children. Every customer has a specific need and is at a different wealth stage. I enjoy helping people anticipate, identify and achieve meaningful goals – by providing them with value beyond ordinary wealth management.”

Fairfield Police said in a statement that James Iannazzo was admitted to the Bridgeport Superior Court on February 7, 2022 and released. Second-degree intimidation based on bigotry or bias is a Class D felony. Under Connecticut state law, a Class D felony carries a penalty of up to 1 to 5 years in prison and a possible fine of up to $5,000 .

Iannazzo was also charged with criminal misconduct of the first degree, which is a Class A misdemeanor. Under Connecticut law, a Class A misdemeanor carries a penalty of up to one year in prison and a fine of up to $1,000. Iannazzo was also charged with second-degree trespassing, which is a Class B offence. Connecticut law states that a Class B misdemeanor is punishable by up to six months in prison and a fine of up to $1,000.

It was not immediately known if Iannazzo had hired an attorney to speak on his behalf, and Heavy could not be reached for comment. Iannazzo has not commented publicly on his arrest or the viral video. Robeks has not yet commented either. When asked on Twitter why no assault charges were filed, Fairfield Police said, “CT corporation statutes require the defendant to cause an injury, which in this case did not occur.”

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