- Associated Press - Sunday, February 7, 2016

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. (AP) - A Flagstaff tourism official faces a misdemeanor battery charge related to his arrest in Florida that occurred shortly after he agreed to direct the Convention and Visitors Bureau.

Tracy Ward was arrested in November, six days after accepting the Flagstaff job. He’s been in his new role for over two months, the Arizona Daily Sun reported (https://bit.ly/23RtjFR).

An Orange County Sheriff’s report says Ward and his roommate argued over the roommate’s missing dog. The roommate told authorities Ward punched him in the head.

Ward told authorities the dog ran away and that he never touched the roommate, who he says accused him of stealing the dog.

A city of Flagstaff statement says all defendants are innocent until proven guilty.

“The city is following (Equal Employment Opportunity) guidance, which provides that an employment action (if any proves merited) will be job-related, consistent with business necessity, and determined on a case by case basis,” the city’s statement says.

Ward said he could not comment on the pending case.

A CVB press release says Ward has 25 years of experience in hospitality and destination marketing. He was previously the interim director for Osceloa County, Florida’s convention and visitors bureau Experience Kissimmee.

According to the city, Ward’s background check and motor vehicles record check went back seven years as part of the application process. No reportable records were discovered.

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Information from: Arizona Daily Sun, https://www.azdailysun.com/

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