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Union official charged with battery

(Union official arrested)…El Centro police took Phillip Farias into custody Sunday.

El Centro Police Commander Jeff Mason says officers were called at around 1:15 Sunday afternoon. They responded to the Gold Cross Ambulance office in the 900 block of Imperial Avenue. They say the 50 year old office manager and 42 year old Farias, the president of Teamsters Local 542, had gotten into an argument which ended with Farias stepping on the office manager’s foot and pushing him. The manager placed Farias under private person’s arrest. Mason says officers obtained video evidence of the incident and Farias, a resident of El Cajon, was taken into custody. He was booked into County Jail, charged with battery. Bail was set at $750. The Commander says a report will be filed with the District Attorney to review for prosecution. The Union has led a strike against the ambulance company since July 28th. The Labor Board is setting up an election, after receiving an employee application to decertify the union. Negotiations are on hold until after that election.