Former Taco Bell Executive Charged With Assault, Battery in Attack on Uber Driver

A former Taco Bell executive was charged with assault and battery Tuesday in an attack on an Uber driver in Southern California that was caught on camera, prosecutors said.

Newport Beach resident Benjamin Allen Golden, 32, faces four misdemeanor counts, including battery on a public transit employee with injury, assault on a public transportation property, assault and battery, according to the Orange County District Attorney's office.

If convicted, he faces a maximum sentence of a year in jail and a $10,000 fine, prosecutors said.

The Costa Mesa Police Department said Golden had been arrested on charges including public intoxication, but prosecutors declined to pursue that charge.

Golden was not in custody as of Tuesday afternoon; he could not be reached for comment. Prosecutors planned to request Golden be held on $20,000 bail at his arraignment Nov. 17.

Video captured on the Uber car's dashboard camera shows a passenger identified as Golden striking the driver in the head and pulling his hair.

"He was grabbing my head and was trying to smash it against the window," said the driver, Edward Caban.

Caban then sprayed the passenger in the face with Mace.

Caban said the incident began when he went to pick up an "incredibly intoxicated" man near Baja Sharkeez on the Balboa Peninsula.

Taco Bell on Monday said it had fired Golden, who served as the chain's mobile experience and innovation lead, according to an online bio discovered by CNBC.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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