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Truck driver pulls gun on striking UAW workers in Warren

Truck driver pulls gun on striking UAW workers in Warren
Truck driver pulls gun on striking UAW workers in Warren 03:09

WARREN, Mich. (CBS DETROIT) - In the past couple of weeks, striking workers outside the Stellantis Parts Distribution Center on Sherwood Avenue have had to deal with people yelling profanities and throwing stuff at them, but no one has brandished a weapon until now. 

Around 12:30 a.m. Friday, a truck driver with Midwest Freight Systems pulled up to the main gate but got quickly upset he couldn't get through the line of picketers. 

Courtesy: Hearmon Heard

"The people were like, 'No, you can't break the strike now. You got to wait until we let you in, and we got the legal right to hold you for a couple of lights before we let you in.' And then he got into an argument with the people telling, 'I'm gonna run them over,'" said Nate Moore, a member of UAW Local 1248.

In a video recorded on Facebook Live by Hearmon Heard, you can observe the driver leaning down in his cab, opening the door, and jumping out with a gun in his right hand. 

He holds the weapon in the low-ready position while exchanging words and expletives with the striking workers.

Eventually, he returns to the truck and continues his business.

"You can go back and forth to get out your truck and threaten people. That's a whole other thing," Darcel Daniels, another striking UAW member, said. 

Even though Stellantis has hired Huffmaster, a private security company, a spokesperson for the automaker said the firm was not on-site at the time of the incident. 

Stellantis provided the following statement to CBS News Detroit:

"Stellantis respects the right of those on strike to advocate for their position, including their right to peacefully picket, and strongly condemns any and all acts of violence. To protect the safety and security of our employees, the picketers and the public as well as prevent threatening activity, Stellantis has hired a security firm at certain facilities currently on strike. We are following our contingency plans to ensure we can still run the business without putting anyone in harm's way." 

Midwest Freight Systems at 21900 Hoover Road confirmed Friday night that the truck driver was no longer employed by the company. 

"We have a very strict policy against possession of firearms in our trucks, on our property, and in our customers. Our driver should not have done that," said Jim Kosak, director of business development at Midwest Freight Systems.

Warren Police were called to the scene overnight and maintained a presence at the parts facility on Friday evening. 

"We are aware of the incident as a police report was made. The case is open and the investigation is active. Once the investigation is complete, the facts will be turned over to the Prosecutor's Office or Warren City Attorney's Office for review to see if charges are appropriate. Given that the investigation is still active, we will not be releasing the report at this time. Members of our Department have spoken with the appropriate UAW personnel regarding the report and investigation," said Lt. John Gajewski of the Warren Police Department in a statement. 

For more on the UAW strike, visit here

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