Small-Town Ice Cream Truckers' Anarchic Reign of Terror Challenged

The town of Gloversville, New York—population 16 thousand—isn't big enough for two ice cream trucks. Or one man's anger-management issues.

Residents of Gloversville have learned to tremble in fear at the strains of "Turkey in the Straw," thanks to the (alleged) chaos sewn by Sno Kone Joe, an ice cream truck owned by Amanda Scott, 21.

Between Scott and Joshua Malatino, the Frank Nitti of her ice-cream-vending spelling abomination, the Sno Kone Joe vendors have run into the law ten times since 2009—yes, over fighting in pizza parlors, and yes, over arguing with 14-year-old customers, but most of all, over territorial disputes with their sworn enemy, Mr. Ding-A-Ling (owned by Phillip Hollister).

But Sno Kone Joe's reign of terror may soon be over, as both Scott and Malatino face harassment and stalking charges. A state Supreme Court Justice heard cases from both sides yesterday, in Scott's only chance to fight the city's decision to revoke her license to vend ice cream from a moving vehicle. Her lawyer argued that the city did not have a rational basis for denying Scott another license.

The representative of Gloversville says that the litany of police reports is a rational basis for preventing Scott from ever selling ice cream again. These include:

  • Two complaints from a former driver of the Mr. Ding-A-Ling ice cream truck, Melanie Ryder, who said that Malatino followed her truck, yelling out: "What the fuck are you doing in Gloversville!"
  • August 2011: Complaints from a man, who, in his attempt to buy ice cream was called a pedophile by Malatino. He was denied ice cream and was engaged in a shouting match in front of a line of children waiting for a mid-summer snack.
  • August 16, 2011: Reports from a former landlord of Malatino, who said he declared Malatino would "have him killed." Malatino chased him with a car and spit at him. Malatino said he was also spit at.
  • October 14, 2011: A charge of third-degree assault at the Pizza Joint in Gloversville. Malatino yelled at the man he was punching: "[I will] break every bone in your body and I’m going to kill you."
  • May 11, 2012: Reports of disorderly conduct when Malatino yelled from the Sno Kone Joe truck at an ex-girlfriend of Mr. Ding-A-Ling driver, Joe McSpirit. McSpirit was parked outside his ex-girlfriend's house. When police asked Malatino why was parked behind the Mr. Ding-A-Line truck, he responded it was his duty to compete with his rival because his truck was "more popular."
  • August 2012: Reports of an altercation between Scott and another woman, fighting about the ice cream truck's music. At least it didn't do this.
  • September 2012: Allegations of harassment from another rival ice cream truck driver.
  • September 14, 2012: A complaint, filed by Scott, against a 14-year-old, who she said demanded free ice cream. He said he was seeking a sample.
  • April 24, 2013: A report that Malatino argued with the Gloversville Police Chief who asked him to move the Sno Kone Joe truck from a no parking zone.
  • April 16, April 19, April 28, 2013: Complaints from the owner of Mr. Ding-A-Ling truck of stalking and harassment.

The result was not determined as of late Wednesday, reports the Schenectady Daily Gazette, doggedly chasing the story down despite troubles at its offices. Though Mr. Ding-A-Ling will probably not enter the witness protection program for testifying against Sno Kone Joe, it might be best if both vendors changed their names.

[image via Adrian Zenz/Shutterstock]