An organizer for a Teamsters Union local was arrested yesterday by D.C. police and charged with making threats and destroying property at the Northeast Washington offices of a nonunion bus company where union organizing efforts have been under way.
James F. Woodward, 31, an organizer for Teamsters Local 639, was arrested in connection with incidents that allegedly occurred this month involving the Yellow Bus Line, Inc., a private company that transports children enrolled in private schools.
A lawyer for the union local said that some effort had been made to organize drivers at the company, and a company lawyer said that some of the company's 14 drivers went on strike for several days earlier this month in connection with that effort.
On Nov. 9, according to an affidavit filed in support of the warrant for Woodward's arrest, an official and a driver of the bus line were asked whether their buses were insured. When they said yes, according to the affidavit, they were told that was good because the vehicles would be burned.
Subsequently, the affidavit said, broken windows were discovered in the trailer that serves as the company's office at 2000 Kendall St. NE. Broken windows also were found in a company bus and in a driver's private car, the affidavit said.
Police also said a driver reported that a man in a car cut him off while he was driving a company bus. The driver was alone in the bus and was not hurt.
A lawyer for the local said that Woodward, who lives in Alexandria, denies the charges.