A former Merrill Lynch financial advisor, who was arrested for threatening employees and using racial slurs at a Connecticut smoothie shop, has been suspended by the CFP board as of February. 7, the board announced today, pending an investigation.
James Innazo was originally arrested shortly after the incident, which took place in January. 22 at a Robex smoothie shop in Fairfield, Conn. According to Fairfield PoliceIannazzo returned to the store after buying a smoothie, started yelling at the staff and threw a drink at one.
In the video, Innazo can be heard cursing employees, and calling one a “(derogatory) immigrant loser”. Later, he allegedly attempted to enter the “employees only” section of the store where the employees were located, police said.
According to Fairfield Police, Innazzo was angry about a smoothie he had bought that allegedly contained peanut butter. His son is reportedly allergic to peanut butter, and Innazo told police he had to call 911 after his son had an allergic reaction. Innazo was reportedly upset that the shop’s service staff did not take his request seriously.
Innazo left before the police arrived, but later locked himself in, according to the police report; Fairfield Police also said that employees reported that Innazo had requested a smoothie without peanut butter, but said nothing about allergies. After the incident and video spread on social media, Merrill Lynch issued a statement saying it immediately investigated and terminated Inazo’s employment. He was with the company since 1996, According to their IAPD profile,
According to the CFP Board, Since Inazzo was charged with three offences, including one offense of intimidation based on bigotry or prejudice in the second degree, counsel for the CFP Board filed a motion for interim suspension against Inazzo, which was to be held at a hearing. The panel approved, finding that “Mr. Iannazzo’s conduct has a significant impact on the reputation of the profession and the CFP certification marks.”
Inazo’s ability to use the position has been suspended until the board completes its investigation, as well as other disciplinary proceedings. The former consultant also appeared in court this week for the first time since his arrest, where he was ordered to keep his distance from the Robex store; He did not file a petition and would return to court in March, According to Fairfield Patch.