August 9, 2016
By Joe Maniscalco
New York, NY – The foreman who allegedly attacked a Bronx ironworker inside a super-ritzy development on “Billionaire’s Row” in Midtown, Manhattan last month, has a September court date and is being ordered to steer clear of the 30-year-old father of two he is accused of assaulting on the job.
Martin Andia, a 42-year-old Park Side Construction foreman attached to the swanky JDS Development Group project going up at 111 West 57th Street, was arraigned in criminal court on Thursday, August 3, after initially being charged with one count of Assault in the Third Degree and another count of Harassment in the Second Degree.
Ironworker Juan Paulino says that Andia attacked him on the fourth floor of the West 57th Street development in mid-July when he attempted to find out why he hadn’t seen a paycheck after weeks on the job.
Instead of securing his wages, however, the Dominican emigre says he was struck and tackled to the ground. The resulting injury left his lower right leg shattered and in need of surgery.
It took another week, and the intervention of the New York State District Council of Ironworkers, to finally secure Paulino’s missing paychecks. There now remains serious doubt that Paulino will be able to continue his career as an ironworker.
“Maybe I’m not going to work for a long time,” Paulino told LaborPress earlier. “Maybe in three years, maybe not — I can’t answer that question.”
Andia was reportedly able to turn himself into authorities instead of being arrested at the JDS development site on July 15. He was later released on his own recognizance and is due back in court on September 27.
In the meantime, Andia is prohibited from having any direct contact with Paulino. The office of Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance informed the injured ironworker on August 4, that a Temporary Order of Protection had been issued against Andia. It states, in part, that a “violation of this order may be the basis for the police to make an arrest.”
Paulino is not the first non-union worker to report ongoing workplace abuses and unsafe conditions at JDS' West 57th Street development.
Ironworker Edgar Joshua Melendez walked off the job in June citing safety concerns. On last week’s episode of LaborPress’ “Blue Collar Buzz,” he joined with Eddie Jorge of the NYS District Council of Ironworkers in further denouncing JDS’ long history of dealing with contractors unfriendly to working men and women.