Smoothie-Tossing Ex-Merrill Broker Is Assigned to Rehabilitation After Racist Rant

A former Bank of America Corp. Merrill Lynch adviser will do a rehabilitation program and sidestep a criminal conviction after police charged him with bigotry over a smoothie shop tirade that was caught on video in January.

James Iannazzo was granted entry into an accelerated rehabilitation program which places him under supervision for one year, after which the charges against him will be dismissed. Iannazzo is also required to donate $500 to the Office of Victim Services, in the decision made by judge Peter McShane on Thursday in Connecticut Superior Court.

Bank of America ousted Iannazzo, 48, after a video of him shouting expletives and insults at a Connecticut Robeks outlet went viral earlier this year. He since took a job at broker-dealer Aegis Capital Corp., records show. The judge’s decision also precludes Iannazzo from returning to or contacting employees at the smoothie shop.

The incident occurred after Iannazzo ordered a drink without peanut butter for his son, who has a peanut allergy, according to a statement from the Fairfield Police Department. He left the store, but returned to confront employees after his son had an allergic reaction that sent him to the hospital, police said.

The video, shot from behind the counter at Robeks, shows Iannazzo shouting and throwing a drink at an employee and eventually calling her a “f—ing immigrant loser.” Employees told police Iannazzo didn’t mention his son’s allergy when asking them not to put peanut butter in a drink.

Iannazzo, who turned himself into police, was arrested and accused of intimidation based on bigotry or bias, trespassing and breaching the peace. Later Bank of America said Iannazzo no longer worked at Merrill Lynch Wealth Management. His Finra records show a pending criminal charge for the Jan. 22 incident.