Former Prov. restaurant owner pleads not guilty to simple assault

Juan Noboa

By News Staff

Reporting By Kainani Stevens

kstevens@abc6.com

@kainanistevens

A former Providence restaurant owner in court Monday morning accused of assaulting one of his former employees with a baseball bat, all of this stemming from a protest over unpaid wages, plead not guilty.

Atlantic restaurant has been closed for over a year now but former employees are still looking for wages they say they are owed.

When they went to their former boss’ home early Saturday morning in protest, things quickly turned violent.

Juan Noboa facing a judge Monday in Providence District court on simple assault charges all of this stemming from an early morning protest on Halloween.

Twenty former workers gathering outside Noboa’s home demanding over $17,000 in unpaid wages.

When workers confronted Noboa on his front porch, things turned violent.

"Ms. Salazar knocked on the door and then she was stuck three times with the baseball bat. She then had to be transported to Rhode Island hospital for treatment," said the Providence District Attorney.

Noboa also assaulted a police officer and resisted arrest. He’s being held on $5,000 surety bond in this case but is also now a superior court violator stemming from an unrelated drug charge.

Protestors and former workers appeared in court today for the arraignment. Flor Salazar spoke through an interpreter saying despite her injuries she will not stop fighting for what she thinks is right.

"That’s why we do this. That is why we protest, because we have a dream to go out and work and provide for our children," said Salazar.

The Rhode Island Department of Labor and Training did grant 6 employees a little less than $4,000 dollars in June.

Noboa had 30 days to pay, but according to employees, he never did.

© WLNE-TV 2015