Local USVI News

Public Works Employee Facing Assault Charges For Allegedly Striking Co-Worker With Piece of Two-By-Four Lumber

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ST. THOMAS — Police have arrested an employee of the Department of Public Works after he allegedly assaulted a colleague while on a job site. 

On Monday, May 9th a man showed up at the Alexander Farrelly Justice Complex to file a police report, indicating that he was assaulted while on his job site in the Fort Christian parking lot. He explained that while he was loading lumber into a truck, a piece hit the railing of the truck and then accidentally hit his coworker. He said that his coworker who he identified as Pedro Zapata then struck him in the face with a piece of two-by-four lumber. The complainant recounted that after Zapata hit him, he simply continued loading the truck. When asked by the alleged victim why he hit him, Zapata reportedly refused to reply. 

Police noted that the complainant sustained a cut under his right eye. On June 3rd, police issued a wanted poster for Zapata after several failed attempts to contact him. He turned himself into police that same day and was arrested and charged. He reportedly declined to provide a statement at the time of his arrest. Zapata was charged with third-degree assault, simple assault and battery, and disturbance of the peace.

When Zapata appeared for a bail hearing on Monday, the judge noted that she must give him credit for turning himself in to the police. The defendant’s bail was set at $27,500 and he was allowed to sign an unsecured bond for the full amount. He is prohibited from having any unlawful contact with his colleague while they are at work.

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