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Thread: Should I get an attorney?

  1. #1
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    Should I get an attorney?

    I use to work as an assistant manager of a retail store. I was the assistant manager for nearly a year, but I left to leave the state to pursue a career in law enforcement. I have degrees in criminal justice, and have been looking to pursue that field for many years.

    Anyway, about a week before I left, apparently the morning deposit never got taken over to the bank.

    Here is the gist.

    The store had a total of three managers working each day. An opening manager, a mid manager, and a closing manager. The duties of the opening manager are to do the deposit, enter it in the system, and take it to the bank when the mid manager gets on duty.

    Apparently, during one of the days, a couple of weeks ago, the morning manager forgot to take the deposit to the bank, and the bank reported that it never arrived -- but the deposit is not in the safe, where it should be. The deposit always remains in the safe until someone takes it to the bank. The bank recently gave the store a transaction log of all deposits, and that one in particular was missing.

    I receive a phone call today from the stores loss prevention department, inquiring if I know anything about the deposits whereabouts, or who handled it. I was the closing manager that day, and I do not recall if it was in the safe or not. The store had started to get really sloppy with taking the deposit to the bank, and there were many circumstances where the opening manager left the deposit in the safe, over night, and let the opening manager of the following day deal with it.

    I do not know if this happened or not. What I DO know, is I did not handle this deposit, because I have not worked an opening shift in over a month, and never take deposits over unless I open. I also never touch the deposit unless I am taking it to the bank.

    There were two other managers that worked that day, and both claim to not know where it is. The loss prevention department called me, and questioned me. And then (now I believe he was just using tactics) he claimed to have "video evidence" of me reaching into the safe "near" where the deposit was.

    Two things: There are no surveillance cameras in the saferoom, but he claimed there was (it's widely known in the store that there aren't.) and two: I am 100% sure I did not handle the deposit, so it sounds like he was trying to use tactics on me to see if I would admit to handling the deposit that day.

    I told him that I absolutely did not handle the deposit, and the only time I would ever open the safe would be to put money from register "pick ups" in the safe, and at the end of the day, when I am counting the tills down and putting them away.

    He then asked me if I could write up a written statement of everything I recall happening that day, and asked me to fax it to him (since I am out of state)

    Now, I am in the middle of police applications. They conduct a very thorough background check, and will ask former employers if there were any "problems" or "cash misunderstandings". I fear this will negatively reflect me, even though I am not at fault, and never handled that deposit. One reason being, the loss prevention manager claimed to have "seen" me on "video" reaching "near" the deposit. He never came out and accused me, but he was routinely beating around the bush, when I know I did not handle it.

    I am in fear that this will slander my personal character when it comes to my police background, and am wondering if I should hire an attorney. I am not sure what for, and what would need to be dealt with, but I'd like to hear some opinions on how to handle this situation.

    Thanks.

  2. #2
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    Get an attorney.

  3. #3
    Activist Member N605TW's Avatar
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    If your asking if you need an attorney its likely time to get one. I wouldn't put anything in writing.

    *I don't have any experience in matters like this so take my advise for what its worth.

  4. #4
    Campaign Veteran skidmark's Avatar
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    The loss prevention guy has made a claim that you deny. Doesn't matter if there was no way a video could have been made or not - it's as close to an accusation of criminal activity as you ever want to be. And as you have figured out, it has the possibility of damaging your reputation and negatively effecting your employability.

    Unless you are an expert in all these areas you would benefit from guidance and advice.

    Do you need an attorney? Probably not - yet.

    Should you be talking with one at this point? The more time they have to prepare the easier their job and your life will be. If you pay them now you might actually save some money in the long run - they may be able to get loss prevention off your back before actual allegations are made or charges filed.

    And for everybody else reading this - this is not an unusual situation when folks get "sloppy" about following established procedure.

    stay safe.
    "He'll regret it to his dying day....if ever he lives that long."----The Quiet Man

    Because stupidity isn't a race, and everybody can win.

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  5. #5
    McX
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    There are some of us here, me included, that have experience with the Police being more willing to go on a witch hunt, or dirt dig, to try to reinforce loose accusations. get a lawyer, shut up, and stop cooperating, or ultimately you will be made the scapegoat. claims of evidence are just that; claims, and they will be proven or disproven on 'discovery'. make sure you do get something formal from the knob that claims he has a video, so that you can prove their intent to railroad you with lies.

    and now a little related music for your listening pleasure:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vt0q6uflFMU&feature=fvst
    Last edited by McX; 11-29-2011 at 07:58 AM.

  6. #6
    Regular Member Jack House's Avatar
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    I agree with Skid, you probably don't need one right now, but you should definitely consult with an attorney anyway. Hopefully you wont need one. That said, situations like these are similar to carrying a gun. You don't do so because you need to, you do so if the need arises you are prepared.
    Last edited by Jack House; 11-29-2011 at 11:32 AM.

  7. #7
    Regular Member Billy D's Avatar
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    tell this guy making the claim that he "saw you on video" that you will give him a writen statement AFTER he gives you one, signed, stating he saw you on video. Of course you will NEVER give him anything. Watch his jaw drop, shut up, lawyer up immediatly. He has slandered you already, and if this affects your job prospects your lawyer will let him know.
    My 2nd amedment rights trump some paranoid persons ignorance.

  8. #8
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    If you even have to ask the question "should I get an attorney" you probably needed one before you formed the question.
    Don't believe any facts that I say! This is the internet and it is filled with lies and untruth. I invite you to look up for yourself the basic facts that my arguments might be based upon. This way we can have a discussion where logic and hints on where to find information are what is brought to the forum and people look up and verify facts for themselves.

  9. #9
    Founder's Club Member thebigsd's Avatar
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    I would have an attorney on standby. The better question is why in the heck didn't the safe room have a functional camera? That's just asinine.
    "When seconds count between living or dying, the police are only minutes away."

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    Thanks. In your opinion, do you feel I should not write him the statement he is requesting? I am on the fence about it. The statement would consist of me explaining who worked that day, my conversation with him, and me explaining that I do not have any knowledge of the missing deposit, and that I did not handle it.

  11. #11
    Regular Member Redbaron007's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by skidmark View Post
    The loss prevention guy has made a claim that you deny. Doesn't matter if there was no way a video could have been made or not - it's as close to an accusation of criminal activity as you ever want to be. And as you have figured out, it has the possibility of damaging your reputation and negatively effecting your employability.

    Unless you are an expert in all these areas you would benefit from guidance and advice.

    Do you need an attorney? Probably not - yet.

    Should you be talking with one at this point? The more time they have to prepare the easier their job and your life will be. If you pay them now you might actually save some money in the long run - they may be able to get loss prevention off your back before actual allegations are made or charges filed.

    And for everybody else reading this - this is not an unusual situation when folks get "sloppy" about following established procedure.

    stay safe.
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    You are not bound to discuss anything with them now that you are not employed with them.
    Last edited by Redbaron007; 11-29-2011 at 02:56 PM.

  12. #12
    Regular Member Billy D's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aaron1124 View Post
    Thanks. In your opinion, do you feel I should not write him the statement he is requesting? I am on the fence about it. The statement would consist of me explaining who worked that day, my conversation with him, and me explaining that I do not have any knowledge of the missing deposit, and that I did not handle it.
    (Yelling) HELLS NO!
    "lawyer up means shut up"
    My 2nd amedment rights trump some paranoid persons ignorance.

  13. #13
    Founder's Club Member thebigsd's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aaron1124 View Post
    Thanks. In your opinion, do you feel I should not write him the statement he is requesting? I am on the fence about it. The statement would consist of me explaining who worked that day, my conversation with him, and me explaining that I do not have any knowledge of the missing deposit, and that I did not handle it.
    NOOO!! First of all, you no longer work there and you are not obligated to speak to him in any way. Second, if you have any further conversations with him, I would make sure that you are recording. Third, if you are really concerned then speak to an attorney. Many will give you a free consultation.
    "When seconds count between living or dying, the police are only minutes away."

  14. #14
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    That's understandable. I just didn't want it to negatively reflect my character if, when asked by future employers, the LP manager stated that the deposit went missing, and then I suddenly refused to keep in communication with him, making me look fishy. I figured it would at least show I was willing to help, but I can see the other side, as well.
    Last edited by Aaron1124; 11-29-2011 at 03:10 PM.

  15. #15
    Regular Member Steeler-gal's Avatar
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    Since Loss Prevention has contacted you I'd say talk to an attorney before you put anything in writing.
    Don't even put a last day summary into writing for them until you talk to an attorney.
    It's worth it just to begin protecting your hide.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Billy D View Post
    tell this guy making the claim that he "saw you on video" that you will give him a writen statement AFTER he gives you one, signed, stating he saw you on video. Of course you will NEVER give him anything. Watch his jaw drop, shut up, lawyer up immediatly. He has slandered you already, and if this affects your job prospects your lawyer will let him know.
    +1 Yes, this one! This is exactly what you should do - take the offensive. In calling his bluff, you'll be forcing an admission (on his part) that the video DID NOT show you reaching near the deposit. That video should clear you if it exists! If the video never existed in the first place, then at least you have put him in a pickle.

  17. #17
    Regular Member Baked on Grease's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aaron1124 View Post
    Thanks. In your opinion, do you feel I should not write him the statement he is requesting? I am on the fence about it. The statement would consist of me explaining who worked that day, my conversation with him, and me explaining that I do not have any knowledge of the missing deposit, and that I did not handle it.
    NO! Just like.with cops, don't give them something they CAN use against you, however convoluted their accusation is. You never know, you may say you were "here at such a time" then they go to the video and find you walking into the safe room.

    Now theu can say "why would he lie about being in the room unless he did it?" And now you are screwed because it is yhe perception that counts.
    "A Right Un-exercised is a Right Lost"

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  18. #18
    Regular Member CharleyCherokee's Avatar
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    I would be very cautious in giving a written statement about the "occurrences" of the day. I mean unless you can remember EVERY detail from that day confidently. It is likely he is waiting a written statement from you so he can use video he does have to see how it relates. If it is off then this just makes you look shifty and suspect.
    A bullet may have your name on it, but shrapnel is addressed to whom it may concern.
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  19. #19
    Regular Member okboomer's Avatar
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    My suggestions based on my Private Investigators training [Oklahoma] is [IANAL]:

    Do not have any more contact with the store or any of their representatives.

    Get yourself to an attorney and find out how much for him to write a letter explaining that you had no contact with the money that day per store regulations and if there are any more questions, to direct them at the attorney. And have the attorney "remind" the Store of your state's libel and slander laws.

    Also, gather up your pay and schedule documents to prove when and what position you were employed. You should absolutely be able to account for every penny you have or spent in the intervening time ... basically, make it too 'dangerous' for them to continue this false accusation against you.

    Your attorney might also want to ask the store if they have changed the combo to the safe since you left? If not, then why not?

    And make no 'absolute' statements ... all your statments should be prefaced with phrases such as, "To the best of my recollection" or "If I remember correctly" so if you need wiggle room later, you have it built in from the beginning.

    Do not answer the phone without your recorder going until this is put to rest.

    And, if they call you again, make them identify themselves, and ask them exactly why they are calling you again ... that would be admissible in court to prove that you did talk to them previously, and if you can, lead them into admitting they already threatened you with 'video evidence' ... don't let on that is actually what you want, but it will add zeros to any defamation/libel/slander suit you might bring. Conclude the call with a statement along the lines of, "I told you in the last call that I was not involved in the disappearance of the money and I have no knowledge of what happened to it or who might have done something to it. Any further contact will be through my attorney at XXX-555-5555." Then hang up and call your attorney and shoot him a COPY of the recording.

    Also, what do you know about the other managers that were employed when the money went missing? What is their character like? Do you have a 'gut feeling' about which one might have done something hinky like take the money? That is the one pointing the finger at you most likely ... now, when was the last confrontation between you and that manager and how did that end?

    If you cannot get this halted immediately, it might be in your best interest to delay your LE application for a few days to make sure this is completely dropped and you are exonerated.

    I would also suggest that you might want your attorney to demand an apology in writing from the Store for the statement/accusation by their employee.

    If you don't guard your reputation with vigor, no one else will do it for you!

    Good luck!

    Now, considering your future employment as LE, you will understand that INNOCENT folks DO need attorneys ... it isn't just the criminals/guiltyBGs that ask for attorneys This is also NOT you escalating the situation, it is your attempt to de-escalate the situation!
    Last edited by okboomer; 11-30-2011 at 10:27 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aaron1124 View Post
    Thanks. In your opinion, do you feel I should not write him the statement he is requesting? I am on the fence about it. The statement would consist of me explaining who worked that day, my conversation with him, and me explaining that I do not have any knowledge of the missing deposit, and that I did not handle it.
    No! He has already implied he considers you a serious suspect. His claim about having you on video proves beyond all doubt that he is adversarial to you. Recall the Miranda Warning: Anything you say can and will be used against you in court. While it is usually police giving this warning, I have no information that police cannot use pre-Miranda Warning statements made to others.

    Recall the warning from James Duane of Regent University Law School. The gist: Even the truthful statements of an innocent witness can be used against him in court if the police, through no fault of their own, come across evidence that contradicts the truthful statements of the innocent witness. A signed statement from you is evidence that can be used against you--to paint you as a liar, to discredit you--if the police come up with a person who is willing to say they did in fact see you handling the deposit on the day in question.

  21. #21
    Regular Member okboomer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Citizen View Post
    No! He has already implied he considers you a serious suspect. His claim about having you on video proves beyond all doubt that he is adversarial to you. Recall the Miranda Warning: Anything you say can and will be used against you in court. While it is usually police giving this warning, I have no information that police cannot use pre-Miranda Warning statements made to others.

    Recall the warning from James Duane of Regent University Law School. The gist: Even the truthful statements of an innocent witness can be used against him in court if the police, through no fault of their own, come across evidence that contradicts the truthful statements of the innocent witness. A signed statement from you is evidence that can be used against you--to paint you as a liar, to discredit you--if the police come up with a person who is willing to say they did in fact see you handling the deposit on the day in question.
    Not to pick nits, but they would also have to have physical evidence or a second, corroborating 'witness' to actually use this in court ... of course, anything said/written up until that time can and will be used by LE against you.

    What I have learned in my interaction with the LEO, DA, and other state investigators is that they are NOT concerned with the TRUTH, they are only concerned with PROVING you are GUILTY if they have already come to that conclusion.

    Other than that, LISTEN to Citizen ... and don't say anything more, consult an attorney!
    Last edited by okboomer; 12-01-2011 at 12:14 AM.
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  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by okboomer View Post
    Not to pick nits, but they would also have to have physical evidence or a second, corroborating 'witness' to actually use this in court ... of course, anything said/written up until that time can and will be used by LE against you.

    What I have learned in my interaction with the LEO, DA, and other state investigators is that they are NOT concerned with the TRUTH, they are only concerned with PROVING you are GUILTY if they have already come to that conclusion.

    Other than that, LISTEN to Citizen ... and don't say anything more, consult an attorney!
    I don't want to go too far off topic.

    Is this a Rule of Evidence in his state? Cite, please.

    Thanks for the validation.

  23. #23
    Regular Member okboomer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Citizen View Post
    I don't want to go too far off topic.

    Is this a Rule of Evidence in his state? Cite, please.

    Thanks for the validation.
    Again, caught making assumptions [about Rules of Evidence in other states]

    That might not be the Rule of Evidence in his state, but it is in MY state, so I should not have made that absolute assumption ... just goes to show that he needs to consult an attorney Of course, IANAL

    I should also back up a bit and say that the laws about recording conversations on a phone should also be researched before doing so ... in the state where the phone call originates from and the state of current residency (if different) ... those are also slippery laws and might make a difference between getting pertinent evidence/admissions and committing a crime.

    Get an attorney, have them write a letter and stick it up the Store's backend! You may even need an attorney in the original state, rather than in the current residential state.
    cheers - okboomer
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  24. #24
    Campaign Veteran MAC702's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by okboomer View Post
    ...Do not answer the phone without your recorder going until this is put to rest.

    And, if they call you again, make them identify themselves, and ask them exactly why they are calling you again ... that would be admissible in court to prove that you did talk to them previously, and if you can, lead them into admitting they already threatened you with 'video evidence' ... don't let on that is actually what you want, but it will add zeros to any defamation/libel/slander suit you might bring. Conclude the call with a statement along the lines of, "I told you in the last call that I was not involved in the disappearance of the money and I have no knowledge of what happened to it or who might have done something to it. Any further contact will be through my attorney at XXX-555-5555." Then hang up and call your attorney and shoot him a COPY of the recording....
    Without a warrant, aren't you required to inform the other party that a telephone conversation is being recorded?
    "It's not important how many people I've killed. What's important is how I get along with the people who are still alive" - Jimmy the Tulip

  25. #25
    Regular Member okboomer's Avatar
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    MAC702 - If you will read my post just above yours, you will see that I amended the statement you quoted.

    In my state (Oklahoma) it is a one-party state for recording ... only ONE party to a conversation has to know it is being recorded.

    In other states, there is a two-party notice for recording.

    Also, remember, these parties are private citizens, so no warrant required if the state's other recording limitations are observed.
    Last edited by okboomer; 12-01-2011 at 01:44 AM.
    cheers - okboomer
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    Lead, follow, or get out of the way

    Exercising my 2A Rights does NOT make me a CRIMINAL! Infringing on the exercise of those rights makes YOU one!

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