UPDATED (7/20/2022): After months of pre-trial work, the State Attorney’s office has filed amended charges, reducing the charge to aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, which is a third degree felony. The new filed information alleges Bianca Montanez did “make an assault” with a vehicle, “a deadly weapon,” and that Montanez “did intentionally threaten to do violence to a person…creating a well founded fear in a person,” adding “that such violence was imminent.” Montanez filed a not guilty plea to the new charge.
The lesser charge will qualify Montanez for a pre-trial diversion program, which is more like probation and would help Montanez avoid a permanent record after successful completition, as all charges would be dropped permanently. It also helps her avoid years in prison for the original charge. Pre-trial diversion, or pre-trial release, is an option sometimes offered to first-time offenders charged with certain misdemeanor or lesser felony offenses. Dropping the domestic violence aspect of the original charge and changing the battery charge with an assault charge were necessary to be able to offer this instead of a trial. The case is closed and held in abeyance – as long as Montanez does not violate the diversion program guidelines.
Great news for Montanez – bad news for Universal Team Members at the Guest Contact Center, who better look both ways in the parking lot.
Original full story:
Universal Orlando Team Members who work at the Guest Contact Center are in another uproar as a Supervisor has been charged with aggravated battery with a deadly weapon and they say she is being rewarded by management, including with a free trip to Hollywood. This follows months of complaints by employees about a toxic workplace at the Guest Contact Center that led two senior Universal executives to apologize for failed leadership and lack of support. The Guest Contact Center is Universal’s call center in Orlando that handles tickets, annual passes, vacation packages, customer service, and other tasks.
Universal GCC Supervisor Bianca Montanez was charged by State Attorney Monique Worrell with aggravated battery with a deadly weapon in a domestic violence situation, according to records from the Circuit Court of Orange County. In Florida, aggravated battery is a felony of the second degree punishable by up to 15 years in prison and a $10,000 fine. All defendants are innocent until proven guilty. But the State Attorney stated Montanez “did, in violation of Florida Statutes 784.045(1)(a)(2) and 741.28, knowingly commit a battery upon a person,” and that “in the commission of said battery, Bianca Lizzette Montanez did use a vehicle, a deadly weapon.” See more court documents below.
Team Members have been circulating court documents and memes of the Supervisor who is now facing a serious criminal felony charge, asking why upper management rewarded her with a company trip to Hollywood, California. Employees, asking to remain anonymous due to fear of retaliation, said upper management approved the trip for Montanez because of bias and favorable treatment in the workplace. They said one director who is personally close with Montanez, Jermaine Bennett, made sure she is protected and rewarded with the trip. Bennett is also the subject of quite the rumor mill at Universal’s Guest Contact Center.
Montanez was arrested after a warrant was issued for her arrest following the alleged domestic violence incident that was detailed by police. According to the affidavit for arrest warrant filed with the court, after having a verbal disagreement with her boyfriend at the time, Montanez got in her car and “accelerated the vehicle striking him head on.” He was apparently “tossed several feet after being struck by the vehicle and sustained several injuries to include cuts to the right leg, left ankle, left palm and swelling behind the right shoulder.” He also “complained of significant pain to his left wrist and his head.”
Montanez then fled the scene and did not return. She was arrested days later by police. Another witness to the incident also provided a sworn written statement to authorities. The records state Montanez had been in an intimate relationship with the victim for three years, making it a domestic violence situation.
Universal Orlando declined to comment and did not refute the claims when asked by the West Orlando News. Universal Orlando also did not respond to Team Members saying they now have additional fear at their workplace. But internal Team Members are buzzing with reactions:
“We now have an attempted murderer employed in a position of power,” remarked one GCC Team Member.
“That is a criminal felony! She’s still walking around the office as if nothing happened,” said another concerned GCC Team Member. “Why is she working around here with a criminal felony charge? It’s not fair.”
“She lined up her car, then accelerated,” added another Team Member, “and that is why I don’t want to be in the parking lot at work with her anymore.”
“Legit attempted murder, but it’s cool, she gives tolerable slow blows so we will let it pass,” said a GCC employee, alluding to the rumors surrounding many of the members of management.
The Universal Guest Contact Center in Orlando, which is led by Senior Director Deborah Colangelo, has been desperate to attract new sales counselors who work the phones selling tickets, annual passes, Loews hotels at Universal Orlando, and vacation packages. Due to the failed leadership under Colangelo and the toxic workplace created by her management team, Universal employees have been complaining or quitting for over a year now as internal investigations appear to not lead to any significant changes. As with the Montanez situation, Team Members are saying it is clear who Universal management wants to protect and that the culture is rotten from the top.
The alleged victim and former boyfriend of Montanez did file a document stating he advised the State Attorney he did not want the case prosecuted, saying he is “not in fear of the Defendant.” He did not deny being struck by her car or other details from the police report in the court document. Typically, many domestic violence victims do not want to prosecute and in many cases when it is a male victim and a female perpetrator, the men do not want to testify.
State Attorney Worrell’s office still moved forward and charged Montanez on April 19, 2022. Montanez issued a written plea of not guilty and waived her personal appearance before the court for arraignment purposes. The criminal felony case remains open according to the Orange County Clerk as Montanez currently travels in Hollywood.
Here are some of the court documents related to this case, which are being circulated by Universal Orlando employees: