Falsely Accused of Harrassment

Question:

A co-worker who has gotten a temporary promotion filed a police report on me for harrassment after she received unknown and anonymous letters making derogatory remarks and racial statements.

I had nothing to do with this and have never seen these letters. The management staff is doing absolutely nothing about this because they are all friends. What can I do about being harrassed, intimidated and interogated as a criminal in a situation that has become unbearable to work in–and the company isn’t doing anything about it?

This coworker singled me out for no reason whatsoever and the only persons who have been called to the police to answer questions about me are white.

There have been over 30 employees complaining to Human Resources about how this individual as well as management staff has been treating them and threatening their jobs.

Signed,

Feeling Threatened


Answer:

DearĀ Feeling Threatened:

There is clearly more going on here than a one-to-one conflict. You need to talk to an attorney, not only to represent you during an investigation, but to review the situation at work to see if there are law violations, or if you might have a reason to take civil action.

As for the current investigation about you–it sounds as though right now you are a “person of interest” in the case. If there is no evidence at all to implicate you, it is unlikely that you will be charged with a crime. However, the second you are charged, if that happens, you need to get an attorney and not talk to anyone else after you do so, with the attorney’s advice.

If there are over 30 other employees complaining about a particular employee, you may have even further reason for civil action. Perhaps all thirty would like to be involved in a lawsuit about the matter.

Starting now, keep a diary of the actions that are offensive, what you did to try to stop them–in an appropriate way–whether or not management was aware, and if they are aware, what they did about it.

Sometimes complaints are made in a general sense, rather than providing dates, times and witnesses. You may find the diary would be useful in a variety of ways.

As I said, this seems to be quite serious, and worthy of much more than a quick answer from someone who is not aware of all the details of the problem. I urge you to get all the facts together, then get legal representation. Best wishes!

Tina Lewis Rowe

Tina Lewis Rowe

Tina had a thirty-three year career in law enforcement, serving with the Denver Police Department from 1969-1994 and was the Presidential United States Marshal for Colorado from 1994-2002. She provides training to law enforcement organizations and private sector groups and does conference presentations related to leadership, workplace communications and customized topics. Her style is inspirational with humor.