What to Know
Jesse Colon, 45, is free on his $1,000 bail on assault and battery and assault with a dangerous weapon charges
Police say Colon grabbed one of his passengers by the neck and threatened the pair with a metal pipe in Boston's North End on Sunday
Colon says the passengers said they would give him $30 for returning a phone, but then threw him only a few dollars and told him to leave
A Massachusetts Lyft driver accused of assaulting and then threatening his passengers with a metal pipe over the weekend faced a judge Tuesday morning.
Jesse Colon, 45, of Boston will remain out on his $1,000 bail on charges of assault and battery and assault with a dangerous weapon. A Boston Municipal Court judge ordered him to stay away from his alleged victims and told him to not transport passengers while his case is pending.
Police say the incident between Colon and two of his passengers happened in the city's North End neighborhood early Sunday morning when an argument over money broke out after he had returned with a cellphone belonging to one of the passengers.
Colon then allegedly grabbed one of his passengers by the neck and threatened the pair with a metal pipe.
Although he would not speak with NBC Boston outside of court on Tuesday morning, he previously said while he was free on bail pending his arraignment that he didn't start the fight and was looking forward to fighting the charges.
He said the passengers offered him $30 to bring back their phone, but when he arrived, they threw only a few dollars at him and told him to leave.
Colon got into a vocal argument that he said then turned physical and that he pulled out the metal pipe as protection.
In a statement to NBC Boston, Lyft said they have "deactivated" Colon as a driver and are cooperating with the investigation.
"These allegations are extremely concerning — the safety of the Lyft community is our number one priority," the company said.
His next court date is Jan. 12, 2018. It's unclear if Colon has an attorney.