Monday, September 17, 2007

City Employee Crime

A letter writer to The Capital today suggested that the aloofness of the Moyer administration regarding crime(s) that a former city employee recently committed can be correlated with crime in our city.

So opines the writer:

According to the story, "Mayor Ellen O. Moyer declined to comment this morning through her spokesman Ray Weaver. She said she doesn't like it when anyone is robbed in the city, whether it be by a city employee or not."

Now there is a brilliant statement. Do you wonder why the city has a serious crime problem?

My initial reaction to this story was something like.........

"Why would the city notice a criminal from amongst thier midst?? After all, birds of a feather flock together."

And after realizing that such a comment was really for personal amusement more than anything else, I didn't have much to say.

What I want to say is: people are crazy. I own a company, and have witnessed the following employee problems:

-employee jailed for 24 hours for spreading the ashes of his cremated relative without a permit
-employee half-naked on-site with his girlfriend
-employee, while on the clock, wearing a shirt bearing the name of the company, ordering an alcoholic beverage from a bar that he knew was a business partner of our company, with the following instruction: "make it a double, and make it quick...i have to get back to work"
-employee missing work because his roommate left a newborn baby on his doorstep

And I only have 12 employees. The city has, like, way more than 12. There is only so much you can learn about a person in a job interview and/or background check. I think these are the only fair questions to ask here:

Did the city do a proper background check?
Is it policy to hire known violent criminals?
Do the city's hiring practices need to be changed?

Other than that, you can't babysit people. You can make the punishment for crimes bad enough to deter criminal behavior, and you can punish these people for a long time after the first offense so you know they won't do it again, but you can't control everything. It can probably be expected that there will be bad apples in the city government just like anywhere else, and every once in a while we have to hear a story like this.

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